Digital artist - 3D

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Name: Anthony
Age: Early 30s
Works for: Himself (self-employed)

"I’d always wanted to be a model maker, to create the spaceships off Star Wars and things like that, but I never believed it was a real job."

Music-mad Anthony can play twelve-string guitar, electric guitar and the violin. His music journey has taken him from classical origins to heavy metal and grunge, before segueing into chill-out, Celtic and classical sounds once more. He especially loves working to the dulcet tones of Hybrid, because it reminds him of computer animation. Whether he’s at work or not, Anthony always makes sure his friends are nearby.

What do you do for work Anthony?

I’ve been freelancing for three and a half years as a 3D artist, designing 3D elements on computer for different companies and industries. Basically I create models. It’s a bit like playing with clay, only on the computer. Say I wanted to create a ship. I model it on the computer. Next with my mouse I create a simple box. Then I cut lines into that box, moving the points around to shape my design. Eventually after time, effort and a lot of tweaking, I’ll have hopefully created the ship that was in my head.

What sort of jobs do you work on?

As a 3D artist I get to work on many different projects. A job can take a day, a week or six months, depending on what it is. I create architectural renderings. I work on TV shows and movies. I create 3D imagery for commercials. Sometimes I work on computer games or even for film festivals. I get called upon to create models by ad agencies, graphic designers and interior designers. It’s pretty diverse.

What do you like about your job?

I like the people that I deal with, both my clients and others within the industry. It’s very casual… it doesn’t have to be formal. I share a studio in South Melbourne with other creatives. It’s nice to work with friends, to go and have lunch with them everyday.

Do you feel you sit in front of a computer all day?

Not necessarily. A lot of my time is taken up meeting with clients. There’s a lot of running around. One day I’ll be wearing a helmet on a building site, the next day I’ll be sitting around an ad agency conference table.

ICT. Where did it all begin for you?

I was never a kid who played with computers. I began a course in Film and TV at RMIT but dropped out when I was offered a job as a cameraman. I started work but soon realised it wasn’t for me. I was really bored stuck behind a camera all day.

A friend told me about 3D and how it was becoming big. I really liked the idea of it. I’d always wanted to be a model maker, to create the spaceships off Star Wars and things like that, but I never believed it was a real job. My friend brought a 3D program over for me to look at. I really liked it and spent three months studying it. That was the first time I had ever turned on a computer!

I applied for a job with a company as a Computer Animator, showing them samples of my 3D work. The boss said no because I had been using a computer for such a short time but the Technical Director argued yes. If I had created this in three months he said, imagine what I could do in years to come? The Technical Director took me under his wing and taught me pretty much everything I know today.

What does your work entail on a day-to-day basis?

The good thing is that it is always changing. I’ve never had the same day twice. Every morning I head to my favourite cafĂ© and plan my day. Next I’ll go to my studio or maybe a meeting. A briefing could be for the interior to a nightclub or perhaps a TV commercial. Most of my clients come to me through word of mouth. People see my work and contact me.

What skills did you need for this job?

It’s hard to say. Like so many in the industry, I was self-taught. No-one in Melbourne really knew about 3D back then. The industry is still fairly young but nowadays there are courses you can take. It would have been good to do a course like people can these days.

I also love the 3D work itself. It reminds me of playing Lego when I was little. Sometimes it’s midnight and there I am, doing work. But I still love it. I’ve turned a hobby into career I guess.

What advice would you give to anyone considering a career in ICT?

Get a part time job outside of ICT. In a kitchen, waitering, whatever. Work anywhere you can and see what it’s like to do a normal job. Then you’ll have a better understanding of how good ICT can be.

What is your ultimate dream?

I think I’m living it.

Find out more about this career path at myfuture.edu.au (new window) (Note: free registration is required to access the myfuture site).