How much can a 3d character modeler make?

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  3 Weeks Ago
How much can a 3d character modeler make?

I was wondering if many or some of you make a good living or a living wage as solely a freelance character modeler.

What do you think about being a modeler?
Is 4,000 a month possible at a low end?
  3 Weeks Ago
Freelancing in what market...? Games?

You have posted before that you Made $100,000 USD on Fivr
sleeping in to 10 am everyday.

I think a character modelor would have to work alot harder than that
just marketing his services.
to say nothing of actually creating the models, to see a steady revenue of $1000 every week doing custom client guided modeling with client revisions and wait times for third party approvals etc.
  3 Weeks Ago
I'm trying to get some experiences from folks who concentrate solely on character modeling. Games, movies, 3d printing, etc. I have a friend who has recently took up modeling and is already quite skilled for even their first model....they are taking their normal art skills and applying it to 3d.

I wanted to help get her in the right direction.
She will be on Fiverr, Upwork, Olance, etc.
Also once she gets more experience we will be working on her Daz and Reallusion store for residual income.

I'm having her build up a good portfolio for Artstation. So we will see how that goes.

Personally I'm in the video making category of CG so wanted just a little more insight into 3d modeling that is more up to date.
Thankfully 1000 a week is not required. More like 1500 a month given the person lives in Latin America at a lower cost of living.

So trying to get all the cogs and wheels going while she concentrates on learning Zbrush and modeling skills.
  3 Weeks Ago
Grain of salt because you mentioned that your contact is in Latrin America, and my advice is coming from the stand point of someone on the east coast of the U.S., but hopefully this is helpful.

Typically, in my experience, there aren't very many folks doing true "freelance" 3D modeling. When they do, they are typically folks who have already made a name and connections by being in the industry and having had a successful studio career first. There's contract work for modeling, but I've seen very few true "freelancers". Particularly in situations where NDAs and IP need to be worried about. Studios (the people who would be giving this person work), tend to want their modelers in the building. There's exceptions to this of course, but it's probably not likely that a "newbie" will be one of those exceptions.

I would recommend making sure she has not only a good game/film portfolio, but also an archviz and product portfolio. I don't freelance anymore, but when i did, the freelance modeling jobs I got tended to be less about games/film and more about product design, city planning, infrastructure, and archviz. These things were not really available via any of the sites you mention (Fiver, etc), but this was a few years ago so maybe that's changed. I found that, at least at the time, Fiver was attracting both the wrong kind of client, AND hooking them up with more low-end design, so it did me a favor by leaving the high-end clients in nice, clear blue water. I can't really give decent advice on getting work via those avenues.

I would also make sure her Art Station and other portfolios are ready before she starts job hunting. Something else I've sen people have success with, is isolating multiple portfolios. So, for example, they might have all characters and fantasy environment modeling on Art Station, but then a separate portfolio on something like Behance that has the more "serious" stuff like product and archviz.

Keep us posted. I'd be interested to watch this develop.
  3 Weeks Ago
My friend is actually going to be moving to Austin area...which surprisingly does have a really good gaming market. I think though what she wants is not full time but part time. Right now she is making money in Latin America as a singer. She puts herself in the tourist area of town and makes pretty decent money.

Now that she is moving to the US in a year we were seeing what other avenues she has to make some money.

I'm looking for modelers all the time and the best ones are always booked for 3 or 4 months. Her 3 modeling talent right now is above average and that is her first model. I'll ask if I can post her WIP. I was quite impressed by a first model being as good as it was. I think her next 5 or 6 models will bring her into pro territory once she learns retopologizing.

I'm trying to see how we can get her working part time while making some residuals and freelance jobs to give her more freedom. Trying to come up with a business plan. We talked about the ARCHviz but she hates that type of seeing if there is a way to stay on the character route if possible. Gathering all the information I can and advice from ya'll more experienced in this arena.

I will definitely keep you and everyone posted.
I am on the same page. She won't job hunt until she has some great stuff. I know we will hit up nerd forums with artwork once she gets it going properly. Then hunt for a job.

Last edited by ilovekaiju : 3 Weeks Ago at 09:39 PM.
  3 Weeks Ago
Quote: I'm trying to see how we can get her working part time

Ah. Well that's a little different. Lining up short term contracts is often a lot easier than getting a full-time gig, and definitely easier than working in a true "freelance" role. Assuming the work visa isn't an issue, you are correct about Austin having a decent market. Good luck to her!
  3 Weeks Ago
I'd consider 4k a month to be on the high end, albeit nowhere near the top. As a remote freelancer you're competing with labor from places with a far lower cost of living, so getting a decent wage by American standards is tough.
  3 Weeks Ago
Quote: I'd consider 4k a month to be on the high end, albeit nowhere near the top. As a remote freelancer you're competing with labor from places with a far lower cost of living, so getting a decent wage by American standards is toug

Cool thing for now she is in one of those remote countries with lower cost of living but at the same time I don't want her to sell herself short.

I also wanted to share something with ya'll. It is a WIP but she has only been using Zbrush for about a week. This is her 1st model and only a week in of learning. This is basically her learning model. I'm sure she will get better in the 3, 4, 5th and 6th.

  3 Weeks Ago
She has a really good eye, if she can make it at the start of her path. The anatomy needs a bit of learning, specifically where muscles joint, but! The feeling of form is very good.
  3 Weeks Ago
Thanks mister3d. I'll let her know what you said. I noticed she has an eye and I'm pretty impressed this the very first model she is working on....learning as she goes. So we will see her progress in the next few models...but I told her not to move on until she has a completed model. Build a portfolio on Arstation and Deviantart.
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