how do i compete with these people??!!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by felix_suwarno, Feb 4, 2003.

  1. felix_suwarno

    felix_suwarno Screenwriter

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    i am graduating this summer. major is computer graphics.

    but hell, i just paid a visit to cgchannel.com, and they have lots of people showing their best works... i was awestruck. AWESOME! but, it made me feel stupid at the same time.

    see, i have a family, i have to go to school ( 2 more quarters ), and how do i compete with these people? i think they have no life for being able to create wonderful images on their pc! there was this guy who took 5 months to model an acura nsx! 5 friggin months. to think that i still have to study some silly things at school makes me wondering...

    whats the point of getting a master's degree if i havent even mastered anything yet? i know rhino3D, adobe illustrator, 3D studio, and thats it. i dont even know maya or lightwave.

    please educate me in this matter.

    thanks in advance.
     
  2. Masood Ali

    Masood Ali Supporting Actor

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    I'm sure the guy who modeled the NSX was saying the same thing after he graduated with a degree.

    Practice, practice, and practice some more.
     
  3. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    Yeah. What I would highly recommend is doing what a friend of mine does. She contributes to a 3d modeling forum. They have nice challenges weekly to create something from a basic theme. The nice part is that you start with a small and (relatively) easy to complete task and you can put your skills to work. Its also a good way to get aquainted with tools you don't.

    Spend some time there and I'm sure that you'll find your results improving constantly.

    Stick with it! [​IMG]
     
  4. VinhT

    VinhT Second Unit

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    Unfortunately in the computer graphics industry, sometimes it's not really about your formal education, but simply what you can or cannot do. One of my friends is a 3D post-production enthusiast. During his early years at college, he showed his porfolio to a few companies and got hired immediately. He nearly dropped out of college because he was making so much money, but wanted to continue just for the principle of graduating from college. He taught himself everything, and of course practiced quite a bit. The funny thing is, I was actually better than him for a while. But I never really considered a career in computer graphics, instead preferring to major in computer science.

    Just keep at it. Make sure to keep an extensive portfolio. I know how hard it is. Even worse is how much the software costs. How can a student possibly afford to branch out and experiment if the software packages cost nearly as much as tuition?

    Don't worry though. Your master's degree will definitely get you in the door. I'm sure there are places that offer on-site training. Good luck!
     
  5. felix_suwarno

    felix_suwarno Screenwriter

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    i didnt have time to check this thread, because, i am busy honing my skills on my pc.

    alex, please let me know what 3d modelling forum your friend visits?

    and i have no idea what kind of extensive port folio i could do in a short amount of time. i am afraid that i need a year working alone on my pc before i could convince somebody out there to hire me.
     
  6. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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    Its basically the same for every profession. You learn as much as you can of the basics and get your foot in the door at a company. They'll teach you the rest. As long as your good at adapting and learning there won't be a problem.
     
  7. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    I think one of Felix's concerns is that he doesn't have enough time. I hear ya... You're basically competing with a bunch of geeks who spend all their free time (except the 5 hrs of sleep/night) by the computer. [​IMG]

    I don't have the answer to how to compete with them when you have a family and other things to care about though. [​IMG]
     
  8. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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  9. Joe Szott

    Joe Szott Screenwriter

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    Felix,

    Looks aren't everything, adaptability can be just as if not more important in a business environment. I work in technical publishing and I would take someone with so-so graphics skills who can hit a deadline, is flexible, and easy to work with every time over someone with great talent at graphics but is always late and unwilling to compromise their 'art'.

    No worries, there are lots of positions for all types and you aren't decided upon for one lone factor.
     
  10. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    I can only speak from my experiences (whihc have little to do with computer imaging or graphics)- but the majority of what you learn in school, even at the college level is bordering on worthless.

    Ok, maybe that's a bit of an overstatement- but I'm always surprised, almost literally daily, by how many people I encounter in college that are waiting around to be tought something. They have taken zero initiative to understand their chosen major beyond what the classroom has to offer.

    In my particular major ("Electronic Media" which is a big word for Radio/TV)- 99% of the kids have done exactly zero dabbling with digital editing in audio or video outside of waht they've been specifically instructed upon. And daily I hear people lament about "finally being able to do some work hands on"- when guys like myself have been doing it for years without ever looking for the education system to grant permission.

    I'm not sure how you should move forward in your case- but I find it amazing that you've made it to the point of a Masters and find yourself with zero experience in the industry standard tools and minimal quality portfolio material. In this day and age- it seems that you really have to take it upon yourself to actively seek out opportunities to learn skills you simply won't be given in formal education environments.

    -Vince
     
  11. matt bee

    matt bee Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with Joe. I work in the graphics field as well, and I know that with some of the jobs I've gotten I've been up against people with much more polished portfolios than my own. Much of the reason that I got the job over these people has to do with how well the employer felt I would fit in with the company.

    When I got my first graphics job I had completely bombed the company's computer graphics test that they gave interviewees, and my portfolio was not very polished at all.(My first real interview and it was a 4 hour tested affair...yikes!)I got the job because the creative director had the philosophy that computer skills can be taught on the job, creativity and artistic skills cannot I also made a good impression with the other employees when I met them.

    There are those people who dedicate themselves to getting a prime job right out of college. I was more concerned with giving myself a good life outside of work, and as a result I've spent the last 7 years building my skills at various jobs until I've finally reached a point where my career goals and non-work goals have come into a balance. It'a all about priorities and to people like myself, work may not necessarily be the top priority so it just takes a little longer to get were we need to go.
     
  12. John Miles

    John Miles Stunt Coordinator

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  13. Patrick Larkin

    Patrick Larkin Screenwriter

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    Here's a short article on the release of the Personal Learning Edition of Maya:

    http://maccentral.macworld.com/news/0301/07.maya.php

    There appear to be a couple more limitations other than the watermark, but it should be sufficient.

    There is also a Maya Starter kit for $120 which includes 3 books and the software.


    I was lucky enough to get a job where the person in charge understands that you need free time to explore new stuff. That is how I really escalated my skills - by having a fostering atmosphere.
     
  14. John Miles

    John Miles Stunt Coordinator

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    Wow. The 4.5 release sounds a LOT nicer than the 4.0 version I tried. They no longer watermark the wireframe view, according to the article, and you can now import files created in the retail package.

    Anyone interested in modelling and animation would be crazy not to give the Maya PLE a try. This is serious, professional-grade stuff.
     
  15. andrew markworthy

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