14 replies · posted

I'm trying to find a spot on the video game industry

Hey guys, I been trying for a while to get into the video game industry. The closest I got to is when I was designing Skins for a game called Rust, I started watching Allegorithmic tutorials like if they were water and eventually I achieved a good level of quality.

The money that I was earning was really good for me. I cannot discuss figures but let me just give you a rough estimation, life in Spain is around a thousand euros and for my first accepted skin I made somewhat lower than the standard of living, but I thought I could make a living of this, silly me.

Well the problem was that steam would take a month to pay me, this is by design because of all the fraud and legal things, I guess that wasn't much of a problem but later as well market of skins in Rust go over saturated ,so all the sudden I was just making a 15% of what I used to, and what you have to understand is that I would spend 8 to 10 hours per model and only a 10% of my models were making it in the game so I was a low pay off and really frustrating.

I decided to drop that because while It gave me confidence that I could work on textures.I felt like I was not a full rounded artist and also I could not earn a decent living that way, so I started diving into 3d, I first used udemy for this but I noticed that the quality of most of the courses that I would take there were kinda not good for video game standards, but I finally came across CG Cookie and I must say I'm really happy with the change my understanding of the tools has severely improve since then.

Anyway I took some freelancing opportunities on a site but it was pretty much what you guys discussed on the freelance tips stream, you are trying to catch up with people that would happily work for 5 dollars an hour, so after seeing that was also not the way, I find myself stuck on a limbo.

I want to create stuff and at the same time being able to get pay but I dunno if my portfolio is big enough to impress anyone ( here is my Sketchfab, so that you can give me some feedback https://sketchfab.com/elfideorubio Please I rather you be harsh when criticizing ) like I feel fairly confident in my texturing skills but if I have to be completely honest, I know how to achieve good effects and so on, but creating a texture from the ground up with designer that presents itself more challenging, and I could only imagine that studios that specifically search for texture artist are looking for a good understanding of designer as well.

I started throwing my portfolio thinking that maybe someone despite my knowledge will throw me a bone, and then I can learn from the inside of a company, I dunno how good this idea is, but at the moment I'm just stranded in nowhere land, so I'm doing the only think left to do ask for your guys help, see if you can share some light into this issue, because at the moment money is super tight, and I'm just maybe thinking of getting a regular job while learning this on the side. So what do you guys think should be my next step ? 

  • crew

    Why not try selling your assets? If you really want to get into the game industry using your skills start selling your assets, start working with people who would use your assets in your games. It's tough to see your range based off your portfolio as a third of them or more are similar in style. I can tell you have skill and from what you've shown off it looks good. I would continue to add more to your portfolio, keep building new things and keep learning the skills needed. 

    Also don't be afraid to get a regular job while working on this. It's tough to feel creative and inspire when you're struggling financially. Think of a job as a way to fund your creative endeavors. As far as those willing to work for low pay, those folks will never become the true source that game developers will be looking for. Those types will tend to cut corners and produce shoddy work. I would instead focus on creating something amazing. There's always a demand for high quality work. 

    • Thanks for the kind words, yeah It's an option that I haven't explore just yet so I'll get to it, I'm also thinking of doing a couple of contest to put myself out there in the community of artist we'll see how it goes for me thanks again.

  • crew

    Hey elfideo , it takes time but I'm confident you can do it! I can see each project in your portfolio is getting progressively better, so you seem to be finding your stride. Take my advice with a grain of salt, but here's my opinion: 

    at the moment money is super tight, and I'm just maybe thinking of getting a regular job while learning this on the side.

    If you're not yet finding enough freelance jobs to pay the bills, this seems like the smart thing to do. While it may take you longer to get to the level you want to be at since you'll have less time to practice, it's much easier to find a job that's a good fit while you're not desperate, and you'll be able to take your time on a few portfolio pieces instead of feeling the preassure to pump out things as quickly as possible. 

    Contests are an excellent idea, definitely do one if you can!

    Looking at your portfolio, I can see you definitely have the basics down, so I think you're ready to step things up a notch. I'm not sure if you designed each one or worked from concepts, but the designs are awesome. Each model you have is good but fairly simple, so nothing really stands out as over-the-top awesome. Try something higher poly for the next project and focus a little more on the modeling stage. 

    Since it looks like you like guns, here are a few examples of what I mean: 






    Since your primary goal is to get attention, render out the high poly version in Cycles with sexy lighting, context, and reflections as well as putting the low poly version on Sketchfab.

    Hope that helps, and I'm looking forward to seeing your WIP's! 

    • Thanks for the references and the advice, yeah I know what you mean when you say that nothing really stands out, I want to focus more in environment to be honest, but those might takes months to complete, you think I should focus on getting my hard surface modelling to a good standard and then move into environments ?

  • I happen to have an OpenSource game engine project I manage that uses Blender and Unity if you are interested in contributing. I have a gallery page about it here: https://cgcookie.com/u/catherineirkalla/projects/stagemechanic-game-engine

    It is still in a development stage but so far all the main game play mechanics have been implemented and our built-in level editor is working quite nicely. But we are certainly in need of artwork! (note that toward the end of that video you can see a couple of the current themes in action)

    There is the possibility of creating characters, doing animations, getting creative with cubes, make pick up items, skyboxes, and background set pieces (like unreachable houses, mountains, etc), and all sorts of other things.

    The project is very easy going with no commitments and literally complete artistic freedom (even if you want to do NSFW content). Since our project supports user-selectable themes for the look of the blocks, characters, etc. the project itself doesn't depend on any particular model being completed - missing models just mean incomplete themes.

    It also means that you can choose to work with the subject of any theme you choose (ie maybe you want to make a Haunted House theme and so you make versions of all the block types and characters to fit this theme) or you could choose to challenge yourself you making as many different depictions of, say, a bomb block as you can come up with

    And for what its worth I have about 15 years experience managing and coding large commercial software projects. OpenSource projects, IMHO, look great on a resume and are excellent portfolio builders since they are real-world projects.

    But, of course, there is no pay for this contribution as this project explicitly does not make money itself directly. (it is, however, BSD/CC0 licensed so one can use it as the basis for commercial projects and artists are free to reuse their artwork outside of the project in any way they wish.)

    If you (or any other readers) are interested in contributing just le me know!

    What i've learned is that (certain) "things in your life happen for a higher-than-your-ego-can-curently-understand" reason Elfideo.  
    It is always helpful to share your own situation and share it with others.
    They can have a different viewpoint and/or opinion on your current situation.
    And when their feedback is honest and focussed on your situation you can learn from them too.

    "The act of earning money" (just having to pay the bills, to stay alive inside a artificial financial prison)
    never should be the major driving force of your current activities ever! If you want or are forced to do so..
    so be it.. but know you have the power to start thinking differently and use your own power of choice to start making planning a different life. (now!)

    is what counts since it will give you wings and push your skills forwards too.
    Money will come flowing later as a RESULT of the different choice, once you have freed yourself from
    "I-have-to-take-care-of-the-financial-burden-first" mindset and actions.

    When I look at your current situation, this might give your more financial stability first.
    This also can help you to get your head cleared up from the financial pressure and get your true (passionate driven) priorities straigthend out first. One has to have some sort of basis in life, from where one can start planning ahead right.

    Start at the /root of your desires and grow/work you way up the natural way, from the Heart.


    To me - the fact you have not succeeded finding a spot INSIDE the video-games industry means (to me) that you have to look OUTSIDE the video-games industry branch. What has motivated you in the first place to start working over there?

    When you learn to let go of it, you quickly will discover that there is a WHOLE PLANET where you can apply your texturing (and possible many other of your own overlooked) skills too ;-) Refocus and widen your view to find an new source of income.


    I can not determine what is best for your personal growth Elfideo.
    That is the essence of the entire process that you are going through right now.
    You need to FEEL want you really WANT .... and... you already know deep down inside Elfideo ;-)

    Dare to follow the inner stream of PURE (texturing or other) PASSION(S)
    ... and see where that will take you in life.
    ...... I'm pretty sure it will take you to a higher playfield then the video-game-industry.

    • iindigowarrior9  Hey thanks for the response, so what drove me initially was the fact of interacting with others  exploring new unrealistic environments and  being able to explore abstract ideas. 

      When I get to create something like a room in vr chat (that I'm still working on) and I had people to test it, it was very rewarding experience in a sense, I made the whole thing in 4 days and everyone was impressed by the quality and the speed that I was working, and then I just stopped..... whatever force was driving me was no longer there.

      It's something that happens to me often and I don't thinks It means that I hate because at the same time I can get lost doing it, it's just overcoming that barrier you sometimes encounter of not being able to continue, but you have to push forward to make out to the other side.

      vr room WIP

    • elfideo The video op your VR room looks nice, well done.

      whatever force was driving me was no longer there.
      That is what I call flow, and when you are on the right track (for head and heart), it can last 24/7.
      I even encounter having trouble going to sleep due to its force.

      it's just overcoming that barrier you sometimes encounter of not being  able to continue, 
      Have you even tought about the HOW and WHY behind barrier appearing in your life? projects?

      but you have to push forward to make out to the other  side.
      To push is, to my experience, something unnaturalIt feels (to me) going up against your own nature.
      mentally forcing something down your Soul-Heart-Body system, which will sooner or later always back-fire.
      When you're in the right flow, you simply feel / sense:
      - what needs to be done next
      - where you need to go now
      - when to pause, unwind and do something completely else (in order to keep your inner balance)

    • iindigowarrior9  Yeah let me put it in other words, like... I enjoy the process of creating stuff and when I do it, it feels natural and I enjoy it, however, I'm limited but the current skill I have, so I have to watch a lot of tutorials and reproduce the technique and that to me it eliminates the fun part of it, but at the same time I understand it's necessary  so when I say push this is what I mean.

      I would lie if I say that I am 100% certain that 3d is what I want to be doing, there's always doubts,I'm the kind of person that has a lot of interest and narrowing something down it becomes challenging, I know for sure that I like to create worlds and stories especially in video games, so I'll keep at it and see where it leads me.

    • crew

      elfideo Everyone goes through the rough stages of development. This is known as "the gap", this video is a great reminder about this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91FQKciKfHI

    • elfideo
      I'm limited but the current skill I have, so I have to watch a lot of  tutorials and reproduce the technique and that to me it eliminates the  fun part of it,
      You can also watch 1 tutorial and try it out immediately.. Like
      - Breathe 1 tutorial in and
      - Breathe 1 example project out
      This keeps funny, light(er) and you get instant feedback, results, skill growth in little steps..

      I'm the kind of person that has a lot of interest  and narrowing something down it becomes challenging, 
      Yeap since that is the point of focus, the point of making it happen into reality / 3d space.
      That moment in time that you have to choose ;-)

      I know for sure that I like to create worlds and stories especially in video games, so  I'll keep at it and see where it leads me.
      If you feel no doubt anymore and you are 100% sure with that goal, go go go for it.
      Keep those project screenshots and videos coming.

  • crew

    If you really want to succeed with your artwork you need to build a following. Start signing up to the big art sites like Art Station, post your art here on the gallery too. Maybe even start up a Youtube channel showing off your work and maybe even giving tips and tricks to those who may not be at your level. Challenge yourself to create something weekly and put it out for others to see. Start networking with those who are in your field. 

    You say "whatever force was driving me was no longer there". This may be because you were working solely off motivation. If you work only when you're motivated you'll definitely feel like that. If you had a following of people expecting to see new art work from you on a weekly or even monthly basis you now have a reason to continue creating. Don't overwhelm yourself and put excess pressure, but sometimes things like that can make a different in keeping the momentum going.