3D Career/Plans

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  01 January 2011
3D Career/Plans

Okay, In short, I want to be in the media, preferbly 3D, specialising in what Im not so sure but I like Photography, Cinematography, Designing, Editing. Im currently 17years old, 18 this year and in college. Im taking Business + media studies and also computing at the moment which comprises of using Visual Basic 6 and I will hopefully be taking photography this year as well. The programs I can use at the moment Are Sony Vegas Pro 9/10, Blender, Kerkythea/luxrender/yafaray , Visual Basic 6 and Photoshop CS5. Im not amazing at any of these programs but I would say I'm capable. Im hoping to learn how to use 3DS max soon as a cousin has access to it and will get me a copy and im going to be purchasing octane render and some other stuff soon after I finish building my new pc this year. By hand Im not a great drawer but I have started drawing to improve my hand drawing skills as thats vital.

As for university Im planning to go to bournemouth uni(UK) in 2012 or 2013(may have to take art foundation as i dont have GCSE art =\) as I have heard its the best animation/modelling etc uni in the UK. is this right? As for software and stuff, what more Should I learn? Im also planning to dabble a bit in sound as thats just another skill i can cover and im familiar with it as I fiddled with sound before.

So what can I do currently to improve my skills or w/e. For some reason I dont rlly feel like I have alot time so im trying to learn as much as possible before Uni.

Im not looking for spend thousands on software so please sensible answers lol

thanks
 
  01 January 2011
If you are not a good drawer then I would suggest to NOT focus on software, instead focus on those drawing skills. You might know the software inside and out, but if you have a bad foundation in traditional skills then the work you'll be putting out would be crap. Traditional skills are very important as a foundation, don't skip that part cause you are in a hurry to learn.
 
  01 January 2011
Also, figure out exactly which job you want to do, and then focus on that.

I wasted lots of time trying to figure out things I would never use just because they seemed cool
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  01 January 2011
hi there, I have to agree with what ejayM2 and darthviper107 advice, it's better to be sure of what you want to do and learn in this field, putting money into software is abit waisting if you're not going to be able to learn anything.

advice from me will be to talk to artist of all area from student, lecturer, staff and probably people who are have been involve in arts for awhile, ask as much you need to know about arts field before venturing further till you are sure about this, and probably can ask oneself what's inpired you to learn about arts.

finally happy new year 8D
 
  01 January 2011
Im not like completely clueless as such, i may have explained things a bit badly. Hand drawing wise Im decent but nothing amazing but can be improved. when modelling things on the computer via mouse Im alot better than I am by hand.

im finding this really hard to explain lol. Im not that new to 3d, Ive been learning for about a year and a half id say but alot more intensely these past 6months. If i was given for e.g. a task of creating a 3d viz of a product, I could mostly likely do it. texturing+lighting wouldnt be great as at the moment im trying to enhance my skills in these areas but i could do it.

I dont want to be a software designer or programmer.

In short I want to know What software Im going to have to be familiar with in order to make myself look abit better to studios+clients.

All i know so far is that most 3d artists have to be familiar with these programs

CelAction
Adobe Flash CS3, Photoshop CS3, Premiere CS3 and After Effects CS3
Silhouette Roto and Paint
Trapcode Particular
Autodesk 3D Studio Max 9
Splutterfish Brazil Rendering System v2
RPManager
Dreamscape
Max2AE plugin
Autodesk Maya 2009
Next Limit Realflow 4
Pixel Farm PFTrack 5.0
ZBrush 3
Frantic Films Deadline Network Render 3
Toonboom Harmony
Rayfire
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by darthviper107: Also, figure out exactly which job you want to do, and then focus on that.

I wasted lots of time trying to figure out things I would never use just because they seemed cool


Ditto! Seriously... listen and heed this advice. This is wisdom. In larger game/animation/vfx studios, you will be working in one or two disiplines. Do you want to animate? Then some basic rigging would be a good skill to know. Do you want to rig? Then some basic animation knowledge is vital to know. Do you want to be a concept artist? Then traditional drawing skills are essential, as is knowing how to use digital painting software and a graphics tablet. If you want to model then you should know how to UV and texture including diffuse maps, normal maps, ambient occlusion, etc.

If you want to be a CG animator, then traditional drawing skills are great to know but are not vital. Many excellent CG animators are not good traditional artists. Though many are. Find your niche and work toward that and one or two related areas. If you are not sure which disicpline is right for you, then learning the basics of many areas in school can be a good way to identify what you want to do. Though this can be considerably more expensive.

Good luck.
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by heyitsdave: Ditto! Seriously... listen and heed this advice. This is wisdom. In larger game/animation/vfx studios, you will be working in one or two disiplines. Do you want to animate? Then some basic rigging would be a good skill to know. Do you want to rig? Then some basic animation knowledge is vital to know. Do you want to be a concept artist? Then traditional drawing skills are essential, as is knowing how to use digital painting software and a graphics tablet. If you want to model then you should know how to UV and texture including diffuse maps, normal maps, ambient occlusion, etc.

If you want to be a CG animator, then traditional drawing skills are great to know but are not vital. Many excellent CG animators are not good traditional artists. Though many are. Find your niche and work toward that and one or two related areas. If you are not sure which disicpline is right for you, then learning the basics of many areas in school can be a good way to identify what you want to do. Though this can be considerably more expensive.

Good luck.


thanks, thats quite useful, I thought to be a CG artist u had to be able to model,texture,rig,composit, render? u have to focus on one area?
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by CWMdesign: thanks, thats quite useful, I thought to be a CG artist u had to be able to model,texture,rig,composit, render? u have to focus on one area?



The field of CG Artists comprises of those areas you mentioned (Animation, Model, Texture, Rig, Render, Particles... etc). A person that does all of these is called a generalist, they tend to get a lot of small consistent jobs but also get paid a bit less. If you specialize in any one or two of these fields, you'll make considerably more money and tend to get longer, more consistent jobs. A good way to pick a field is to dive into each and see which one you like. I tend to like all the areas, but I mainly do Rendering/Compositing.

Hope this helps!
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by comfortk: The field of CG Artists comprises of those areas you mentioned (Animation, Model, Texture, Rig, Render, Particles... etc). A person that does all of these is called a generalist, they tend to get a lot of small consistent jobs but also get paid a bit less. If you specialize in any one or two of these fields, you'll make considerably more money and tend to get longer, more consistent jobs. A good way to pick a field is to dive into each and see which one you like. I tend to like all the areas, but I mainly do Rendering/Compositing.

Hope this helps!


Oh okay then, Well, I like Modelling, Rendering and compositing. Animation + rigging im not jumping up and down about but Im interested in animation more than rigging. so i need to concentrate on the 3/4 i picked up there? yes? and also do you have to be able to script? and if so, how could i learn? what programs could i use to learn? and also why would a multiskilled cgartist get paid less than one who specializes in one area? is this a skills issue?
 
  01 January 2011
This may be difficult to do if you haven't had a chance to try out each area a little bit (something school can be useful for) but try to find out what it is about creating CG art that gives you goose bumps. What really gets you excited? Remember that this is a field where it's not uncommon to work very long hours (12+ a day - sometimes 6-7 days a week if you're nearing the end of a project) and you must love what you do if you are going to be successful at it. All of these areas are highly competitive and if you lack passion you could easily burn out or end up not practicing enough to beat out the other hundreds of people applying for the same jobs you are. If you say rigging and animation donít make you jump up and down, then move on and pick a different area to focus upon.

When I was first starting out I also liked many different areas, like compositing, lighting, modeling, texturing, and animating. It took me a long time (too long) to make a decision, but when I finally had the epiphany that breathing life into the characters on a screen is what charged me, I decided to work hard at learning character animation. I still have much to learn but Iíve never looked back. It's been a while since Iíve done anything substantial outside of character animation or rigging.

Scripting is a great skill to have across many disciplines. If you can write simple scripts to speed up your workflow, it will make you more productive whether youíre compositing, modeling, animating, or whatever. I write simple scripts all the time that make doing repetitive tasks a push of a button. But Iím not qualified to be a tech artist. A tech artist is a whole other discipline where scripting is a huge part of it.

So yes, learn a little bit of scripting. As to which program you use, again it somewhat depends on what youíre doing. For compositing you may want to look at Nuke, for VFX you may want to look at Houdini, but you canít go wrong starting with either 3DS Max (MaxScript) or Maya (MEL/Python). There are several great training videos online for learning. Start with a Google/YouTube search and youíll get tons of great starting videos for free. When youíre ready to invest some money you can find some great videos from CG Academy, Lynda.com, Digital Tutors, and many others. Some of the authors, like Bobo and Paul Neale even hang out in these forums.

But donít get ahead of yourself. Find the goose bumps. Find what gets you excited. Then focus on that.
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by CWMdesign: Oh okay then, Well, I like Modelling, Rendering and compositing. Animation + rigging im not jumping up and down about but Im interested in animation more than rigging. so i need to concentrate on the 3/4 i picked up there? yes? and also do you have to be able to script? and if so, how could i learn? what programs could i use to learn? and also why would a multiskilled cgartist get paid less than one who specializes in one area? is this a skills issue?


If you want to get into rigging, scripting would be a hell of a thing to learn. When projects get near the end and people start to worry, people who know how to script well really shine through and speed up the process/fix problems easily.

Also, generalists tend to earn less money because they are disposable. There are thousands of generalists looking for jobs. If you specialize in a certain area, you tend to be better in that area than a generalist. Generalists tend to know most areas but not very well.
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by CWMdesign:
All i know so far is that most 3d artists have to be familiar with these programs

CelAction
Adobe Flash CS3, Photoshop CS3, Premiere CS3 and After Effects CS3
Silhouette Roto and Paint
Trapcode Particular
Autodesk 3D Studio Max 9
Splutterfish Brazil Rendering System v2
RPManager
Dreamscape
Max2AE plugin
Autodesk Maya 2009
Next Limit Realflow 4
Pixel Farm PFTrack 5.0
ZBrush 3
Frantic Films Deadline Network Render 3
Toonboom Harmony
Rayfire


You are all over the place with this list. You wouldn't need to learn even a quarter of those to be taken seriously, it almost looks like someone is just rattling off random programs or plugins they heard about.
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www.psvisuals.com - 3D Visualization and Content Creation
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by Decency: You are all over the place with this list. You wouldn't need to learn even a quarter of those to be taken seriously, it almost looks like someone is just rattling off random programs or plugins they heard about.



I would have to agree. I've been in school and freelancing professionally for the past 7 years and I know 5 programs that I am truly comfortable with (excluding Adobe Suite)... you definitely don't need to learn all those programs but it would be nice to get familiar with them
 
  01 January 2011
Originally Posted by Decency: You are all over the place with this list. You wouldn't need to learn even a quarter of those to be taken seriously, it almost looks like someone is just rattling off random programs or plugins they heard about.


thanks guys and also I wasnt saying you HAVE to know them or else but u have to know generally a few of them. and it wasnt a random list. I looked at 3d jobs in particular and these are generally the programs that kept popping up. why toonboom and 2d stuff was there i have no idea but ah well..its there. lol, I have 3ds Max now, Its odd, its REALLY similar to blender but so far I like blenders UI better, everything is just neater although i do understand that 3ds is better, industry wise. thanks for all your comments guys, repp++
 
  01 January 2011
Thumbs up Free Autodesk software for students :D

Hi, im roughly the same age 16/17, and doing similar subjects (Media, Computing, ICT) and I teach my self how to use software and things in my free time. Im also in the same situation as you as I did not do art.

If your looking for 3D modelling software Autodesk products which are used a lot in the industry are free for students (google "autodesk student community" as for adobe products like photoshop and after effects there are plenty of Open Source versions out there which i hear are really good, i currently have CS4 though

Hope this was helpful

Matt
 
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