I've been working as a 3D animator and illustrator for the past 9 years now. The subject matter I deal with is basically scientific, medical, technical. I have a science degree and a graphic arts degree from a popular art school. I have extensive 3ds max experience, some flash, some web. I'm not necessarily the special effects or gaming guy or not even the small studio guy, but more like the expert that can use 3D graphics for communications in technical, engineering, educational, scientific and medical firms.
I find over the past 10 years, the 3D industry has changed a Whole lot, from hyper realism, to motion capture, to stereo, to tablets, and now augmented reality. I also see now that the competition for 3D jobs, contracts, positions are even more fierce now due to world-wide competition in quality and in costs. (Companies seem to now look to Asia for quick, and well- made 3D work for a fraction of the cost.) My feeling is that surviving as a 3D artist/generalist nowdays and trying to make a long lasting career out of it is even more difficult and much more competitive then it used to be.
What can I do as 3D artist/generalist in a technical field to compliment my 3D skills to make me even more competitive and saught after so that I can find work, stay on the front edge, stay relevant, stay employed?
In your experiences or knowledge, what gives 3D artist the extra tools or the extra edge in todays vast multimedia and computer graphics world?
If my field of work is too particular and you dont have a comment, then just consider it to be any kind of work field
So in simplistic terms: 3D skills + XYZ = permanent, well paid, saught after, fulltime work
What is XYZ?
Looking for all your opinions.