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How to Garner Experience as a Freelance 3D Designer and Land a Marketable Job

 |  Amy Johnson

9 Key Tips For Improving Yourself as a Freelance 3D Designer and Gain Experience

There are numerous freelancers in today's modern world. From a market size of 151.8 billion U.S. dollars during 2019, the U.S. recruiting and staffing market is estimated to decrease to 119.4 billion U.S. dollars in 2020. The decrease is primarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This is a 21% decrease from the previous years’ figure. It's been found that these days, most people prefer freelancing to earn extra. And most 3D artists are involved in freelancing, either full-time or on the side.

freelance 3D designer

Image source: Statistica

Want to become a freelance 3D designer? First you need to understand that the basic requirement is having established connections and solid experience. The experience can be the result of working in an industry for many years. It sometimes happens that you have done something small but which helps you sell your skills in the on-demand market. Many 3D designers have started making good use of opportunities that come their way.

What is a 3D Designer Freelancer?

Any individual working with 3D models can be called a 3D designer, artist, or modeler. A 3D designer deals with a 3D model that helps display two-dimensional images through 3D rendering. Individuals can start their careers as freelancers; they can learn to design 3D objects in 3D modeling with SelfCAD. But starting the 3D freelancing profession is certainly not for someone who has little knowledge and market experience.

"If the victim would persist in his folly, he would become wise." William Blake

Today, 3D modeling is not just for animated movies and video games. 3D designing is now an in-demand career. An individual can work almost anywhere as a 3D designer once they have become skilled enough. Big business giants require it to build new merchandise efficiently, customize old products, and design whole buildings from the bottom up.

Once you get your feet in the door, 3D design is a well-paid career with an average base pay of ₹31,088. It also satisfies the urge many artistically-minded people have. It does require thought and work, and these tips could help you get started. Becoming a freelancer 3D designer is not an easy task, but it's completely worth the effort.

freelance 3D designer

Image source: Glassdoor

You can choose to remain at your desk, hating your job forever, or can decide to kickstart your freelance 3D designer career. You can gain outstanding experience by choosing to prepare interactive tutorials using SelfCAD and getting them published on the tutorial page available on the platform. These tutorials can serve as your experience when asked to provide proof of work experience. It can help you display your work online, thus helping you land more projects in no time.

Tips to Get experience as a Freelance 3D Designer & Land a Marketable Job

If you are not a freelance designer, then you have the chance to become one now. It might take time since you have to learn the skill itself, after which you can then learn how to start a 3D designer business online. If you have not learned 3D design, you can try to teach yourself by enrolling in online courses or trying out different platforms like SelfCAD.

Starting as a freelance 3D designer can unleash a wide range of emotions that ranges from empowering to terrifying. However, it might not be the easiest path; running your designing business does guarantee a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that comes with knowing your every cent was acquired through your hard work and skills.

To help you out with the journey to self-employment, we have compiled a list of essential aspects. It would be best if you kept each in mind when choosing to become your own boss. Check how you can become a successful freelance 3D designer; the article covers everything from developing a website to setting up a productive working station and demanding compensation from clients.

How to Become a Freelance 3D Designer?

  • Make bureaucracy your friend;
  • Personal branding is key to success;
  • Eyes on the prize;
  • The client better have money;
  • Juggling the perfect work-life balance;
  • Spread the word.

Let's explore the points in depth right away!

Take a Test Drive

Becoming an expert 3D designer involves a significant investment of money and time. While it is possible to become a 3D designer based on experience alone, a degree can make a huge difference in how you can start out.

There is nothing like signing up for many classes, purchasing the necessary apps, and discovering that you hate most aspects of a career. Before you start working towards building your career as a professional, just play around and win the game. There are numerous options when you choose to become a freelance 3D designer; there are multiple softwares, and few are free, so you can test the waters to become the best.

If you find one that caters to all your needs, you will definitely love it. This brings you one step closer to your goal. You can start learning and go on to build a career that you love.

Start Small

Your project might be simple and small. Remember that a coder starts with creating a code for printing "Hello world, good morning!" and then move to using large apps like Deezer, Spotify, or any other. The task is not flashy or out of the ordinary, but guides you through the simple steps.  It might help you to understand techniques such as edges, lighting, and shading.

Generalize First

Having a niche is not always favorable. Being stuck in a niche limits the amount of work you can search for. When you limit yourself to one area, you come under fierce competition. It's harder to search for someone willing to take a risk on a novice when there are more experienced modelers to choose from.

Willing to Work for Little

When you start your journey as a 3D designer, you need to learn to deal with everything that is thrown at you. It is sometimes worthwhile to price projects on the lower end of the scale when you are just starting out. It increases the possibility of a brand to take a chance on new 3D designs, because it will help them save both time and money.

Know What You're Worth

3D designing is a high-paying job. However, if you have just started as a freelance 3D designer, then you need to work for lower pay. You can continue doing the same for a few years until you’ve built a solid profile. Most freelancers fall into the rut of refusing to ask for a raise or avoid moving to a company that pays them what they are worth. 

Make sure that your wages reflect your experience and knowledge at the same time. Accepting low pay is worthwhile when starting out. Once you improve, make sure you're being paid what you're worth.

Choose Best Solution

3D designing is a wide field and if you choose to focus on all of them it becomes a challenge. To become a master, you need to choose one field and focus on it. Some of the areas in 3D designing available include 3D artist, 3D animation, art director, architectural designer, and many others. When you focus on one area, you will increase your chances of being an expert in that area hence increasing your chances of landing a highly paid job. 

Additionally, you also need to choose a software that works best for you and that improves your work as well. After getting the software to use, you can explore YouTube videos, blogs, and other sources to improve your skills and earn more from your freelancing work. 

Nail Your First Job

freelance 3D designer

It is one thing to dream of being a freelance 3D designer, and an entirely different thing to start doing it. Your project can be a frightening experience. However, it's hard to estimate how immeasurable your skills are until you are working with or sweating through an interview.

You can learn a lot from the jobs, for example, whether the commitment and time are worth the money you asked for, how skills are compared, and how to interact with customers. If your customers are pleased with your output, you know you have gotten things right. 

Know Your Strengths and Weaknesses

Everyone excels at various things. Your particular talent could be coloring, texturing, lighting, or realistic movement. It may be knowing how to create an ordinary object that looks exceptional. It is helpful to know what the most substantial asset is and showcase that in the portfolio during each project. 

Playing to strengths is a straightforward way to land projects considerably consistently. It also helps you to know what your weaknesses are. If you are struggling with a specific program or searching for certain parts of 3D designing, making time to shore up the weakness can make you a more well-rounded designer. 

Build a Strong Portfolio

Your portfolio reflects what you do as a 3D modeler. You can build a strong profile by listing your past work. Viewing evidence that you know how to attain the goals will go a long route in generating sales. Most customers prefer to explore previous work before hiring a freelance 3D designer. Hence, make sure to build a strong portfolio as it helps you to get more money in less time. 

Train and Mentor Others

Training and mentoring others will help improve your design skills too as you will be improving in the process. One of the ways you can teach others is by using the interactive tutorial feature of SelfCAD.

If you have a design idea in mind, you can record the steps of designing it and be able to share it either in the form of a link or save instructions to the computer and share it and you can also request to publish them on the interactive tutorial page of SelfCAD under your name for others to be able to see. The instructions prepared through this method are easy to follow when compared to the video tutorials and lengthy articles.

Preparing and publishing your tutorials on the interactive tutorial section will not only help you in improving your design skills, but you will also be able to build your name as an expert in 3D design.

Decide on Whether to Go Freelance or Look for Full-Time Work

3D designing is flexible in terms of what you can do. If you are already working for any brand full-time, you can continue with it or choose to start as a freelance 3D designer. It might be harder to get freelance work at first if you have no experience. But once you build a strong profile, then you can quickly get a 3D designer job. Be sure to make the intelligent choice as it will help you earn significant revenue in very little time. 

Enjoy powerful modeling, rendering, and 3D printing tools without the steep learning curve.

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Author Bio

Gaurav Kanabar, founder of Alphanso Tech. He has specialized in blog writing, article writing, and copyrighting on different topics like the latest music industry trends, what is iptv, app development, marketing tips, and many more. Besides that, Gaurav loves spending time with nature, reading novels, and playing snooker.

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