How to Start a Career as a Freelance Animator

A freelance animator specializes in producing dynamic graphics with the help of computer and graphics related technology. Sometimes as a freelance writer, you will also get an opportunity to create your own characters and bring them to motion. However, this is not always the case. There might also be situations where you will be expected to work on the designs and ideas of other professionals. If you are considering the option of becoming a freelance animator, here is what you need to do.

Obtain Appropriate Qualifications

There is no specific educational degree or course that is compulsory for becoming a freelance animator. If you have a great passion and aptitude for visual art then the rest of the procedure is not tough to follow. It is widely believed that art cannot be taught, but has to come from within. While this is true, it cannot be denied that with basic knowledge and interest in the field, a classroom can help hone your skills.

  • A 2 to 4 years course in computer animation and graphics will provide the required training. This course can also be completed on a part time basis.
  • A strong understanding in few basic computer applications will go a long way in understanding the core issues of graphics and animation.
  • A bachelor’s degree in a related subject could be an added advantage.
  • Keeping in pace with the ever changing trend in graphic and animation related technologies is crucial.
  • As a freelancer, strong communications skills and willingness to work with tight deadlines is important.

Get to know the Job Outlook

A freelance animator could be hired by a firm, organization or an individual to work on projects like movies, commercials, animated software or even video games. If you have the aptitude for sketching, willingness to co-operate with the team members and ability to give a visual form to your imaginations through graphics are important qualities to become a freelance animator. One of the important facts about working as a freelance animator is the ability to choose your own schedule. However, sometimes it will be necessary to adapt to clients’ schedule as well. As a freelance animator you will be expected to:

  • Interact with the clients to understand their requirements.
  • Provide valuable inputs according to the clients’ needs
  • Develop models based on the design or concept provided.
  • Give visual form in terms of sketches and graphics to characters.
  • Produce story boards.
  • Use design software according to the needs of the project.
  • Work in a team and meet strict deadlines.

Advancement Opportunities and Salary

An average a freelance animator earns about $30,000 annually. However after a considerable period of handling various projects it is expected to increase up to $80,000 per year. Improving the business gradually is the key to success in this field. After entering the field as an animator, it is possible to become an assistant designer or the chief designer in due course of time. Working as a supervisory animator for a team of entry level animators is also an option.