To everyone who observes it, happy new year! I was curious to know what all of you have been up to in 2017, and what this year might bring.
Personally throughout 2017 my technical skills have grown substantially! I’ve become way more comfortable with C#, Python, and VEX. I’ve written small games and created tools that assist in my workflow. I’ve also started evangelizing Houdini more seriously, which has really solidified my understanding of the application (having to teach something really makes you second-guess everything you know)!
This year I’m hoping to return to more artistic initiatives, but also maybe become better at shader programming. I’m itching to learn more about stylized effects, so I think combining the two will be a lot of fun! A friend lent me her copy of Elemental Magic, and it’s already having me rethink how I approach effects work.
What might your plans be?
2017 was a very mixed year for me. I learned a lot from freelancing, but I also took on a bit too much work which affected my health.
In 2018 I’m starting a new job where I’ll be able to focus more on the big picture which I find incredibly exciting!
Happy new year!
In 2017 I have gained some experiences that I think simply couldn’t be explained, only experienced. I feel like a broken record saying this here yet again, but this year I was able to go to GDC, meet a bunch of you in person, joined this forum and wrote many a thank you note. As it would turn out, a sudden delayed reply from one of these thank you notes would also result in giving me the opportunity to an early morning final Thank You to a one of a kind feline friend for whom I feel I shall never see an equal to again. That one of kind
pet friend. It’s a long story, and its events may very well been happenstance, but it is done. It is history.
I also was finally able to get a new computer after far too long an unneeded and unwarranted delay. Another story. I have so many stories, and it doesn’t even feel like I’ve done anything yet. I wonder if that’s a good thing or not.
In 2018, I’m not getting any younger. Darn! Really though, in 2018 I will either start a career as a Realtime VFX artist or I “never” will. At minimum I simply need to get into this Realtime Industry. With context and personal reasons being key to choices, I have in these last few years been, perhaps foolishly, holding my self back in various ways. I’ve made choices to keep my eyes on the VFX prize. I have “suffered” for convenience. I’ve totally redirected my life once it became clear that the sheer possibility to become a VFX artist was actually a possibility for me.
Now that I finally have my own “Modern 2017” computer, and presuming fate doesn’t jump in and “sike” me yet again; I’m going to go full throttle with this and it’s going to be quite painful I expect. As a generalist, I’m going to have to really force myself to not get distracted on all the other non-VFX stuff I’m interested in learning more about and simply want to make right now. Lighting, Texturing, Environments, Design… it’s all amazing interesting stuff. There simply isn’t enough stamina in a day. Yet none of those career paths hold a candle to the sheer glee I get from my experiences with VFX creation. I’m going to do what I feel I gotta do. Since you are here reading this, I expect you will see what I mean… Soon.
In till then…
Happy New Year All!
10th of January Edit: … or should I?
2017 was a rollercoaster, but definitely a good year
Made a VFX pack for unity
Quit my my job as a pixel artist to work as a fulltime VFX artist at another studio
But I was resigned before I could start
Went into a freelance rampage mode, turned out to be good
Tried making effect packs but was not happy due technical difficulties, staggered development until now. (currently in Unity’s review process)
Been learning Unreal(Cascade) which has broaden my scope a lot about shaders/material editors
After a lot of back and forth I decided to take a fulltime position at Mojang as 3D/VFX artist
Goal: want to make 2 more effect packs, not sure what they will be, but its gonna happen(not counting the ones that are in review process)
I want to study more about handwriting shaders and I will be attending GDC this year, really excited!
Besides reducing the amount of time working for clients I want to try and focus a bit more on what I want in 2018.
I wont go into much detail but a few years ago I was poor, dry bread only for lunch and dinner poor.
I also ended up an orphan. (at age 32) I had to pick up my slack and myself and went all out these past few years.
A few friends suggested I’d do some freelance work focusing on vfx which is something I always liked doing and I was very fortunate that it paid off and had a steady stream of work. I earned my first real money in a long time and now I am even earning enough to save money and am capable of not only taking care of myself but my gf as well.
Since I am 34 now, and might take some big steps in the next four to five years or so I decided that now is the time to try and finally make a game of my own. In other words: try to accomplish one of my own dreams instead of working on the dreams of other people as a freelancer.
I’ll keep some clients, make some marketplace packages, and hopefully have something to show at the end of this new year. It might not be a finished product… heck it might not even be interesting for anybody but myself. but I can at least tell myself that I tried, instead of regretting never attempting it.
Again without too much detail: I went trough hell, --or at least experienced it as such-- but to anybody who ever doubts themselves or feels down… keep going and dont give up. things will fall into place.
And while corny, Nike’s slogan “Just do it” holds true for me.
I wish you all an amazing 2018! lets make it bang, sparkle, and glow!
2017 was great - freelancing, marketplace packs and teaching, with a little bit of travelling and time off for good measure!
Hopefully 2018 will be bigger and better - more teaching, GDC in March and maybe an indie project or two
Happy new year and best of luck with everyone’s 2018 projects!
In 2017 I finally was able to release the project we were working on two years, simultaneously with another game release
I started my first internship and got my first taste of development in an ‘actual’ team. Made some cool things, learned a lot. I’m proud of myself being able to pull through despite family and personal problems, some of the heaviest ones I’ve faced yet.
2018 will be an eventful year. My studies will come to an end and my life as a developer begins in my first proper job. Currently there’s offers on the table of some international studios and I’m excited about the future.
Best wishes to you all for 2018 and good luck with all your artistic endeavours
2017 was full of up and downs for me. I graduated from Inter-DEC Montréal and went from many troubles since i come from a foreign country (French Polynesia) and what i’m doing now is something i knew nothing about (3D Modeling, Texturing, VFX, Animation) before coming to Montréal in August 2016. It was hard to learn what i now know. I had to work harder than anyone else to make my way through (new country, quebec french accent, my first winter, etc.) and i did it. Graduated with honor and got a few job offers when i graduated. But many of these were non-paid 2 months internship with no guarantee of being hired. So i turned them down, knowing that this could closed some doors, because i find this kind of practice shady and i didn’t wanted to be reminded as someone that is working for nothing.
I also got an interview at Gameloft but i blew it up when it came to the technical questions even though i knew the answers. I was working full time as a QA tester at that time and this worned me out to the point where i wasn’t prepared for the interview. At all.
I was depressed, quitted my QA job and then i went into hermit mode for 2 months, playing non-stop. And then i decided to work my ass off to add some work on my portefolio, so i worked extra-hard to do so. But at the same time, i applied in over 30 studio and got nothing. And then 3 weeks ago i got a job offer from The Coalition, i was happy and i freaked out at the same time. I went all out to make this right and prepared myself for the job. I went through all the interviews and in the end i didn’t got the job. A buddy of mine got the job, i was happy for him but it crushed me down even harder this time considering the amount of efforts i put into it.
I cried and was angry at myself for not being good enough. But the same day, this same buddy hooked me up to a guy that was looking for a VFX Artist. He asked me to come for an interview and i got the job. I begin in 2 days and this will be my first step in the gaming industry. So i guess it’s not that bad, but i still get a little depressed on the opportunities i missed.
Add that i have to deal with the immigration, because i want to live in Canada, and a debt contracted to make this all happened and no family to support you (i’m by myself), it quickly becomes heavy, but i try to do what i can to be part of this industry and be worthy of the trust of the few people that supports me.
2018 will be the decisive year for me, both professionally and personally.
I graduated in September 2017 and am working temporarily at my old security job until I find my way into the games industry. It has been a struggle so far because I want to work on more FX in my free time, but my current commute is poop.
My goal in 2018 is to get an entry-level VFX job so I don’t have to stare creepily at people in the dark.
In 2017 I didn’t overwork myself like I’ve done on the previous years, I took care of myself, spent more time outside in the sun and I intend to keep that up! I also took up teaching which was a blast, never done that before!
At work I took more technical artsy stuff and I feel more confident about that now. I feel like I’m on the right path, just need to keep pushing forward patiently
Wow, a bit late to this. This is gonna be long, scroll down for tldr.
2017 had been an absolute HELL for me, with literally just one good thing I can count and almost every other thing that I had going downhill. My girlfriend of 3 years and I got married, thanks to my cousin who helped pay for every single thing that goes into a wedding. He’s also the reason why I’ve been able to eat and survive so far long. I lost my entire side of the family (not to death, but I won’t go into details on that here, its another very long and sad story), I also almost lost my wife to her seizures (and continue to fear that as we can barely afford her meds), all while at the same time struggling with homelessness, fearing having to go back to my oppressive Arab country that I worked so hard to get out of to come to a better one; and nothing besides instant noodles and bread to eat causing my health declining too. For those of you wondering why I couldn’t work or freelance, I’m an international student in the US and don’t get a work permit visa until I graduate. It’s really difficult not having any family support, not being able to work legally and then being in a situation like this. Life just hit me real hard in a way I had never imagined along with massive depression causing me to take time off from school and work to focus on fixing up my life.
tldr: Last year was a rollercoaster. Got married to my love, yay me. Bunch of bad things happened, boohoo me.
shit life happens. Passion and dedication is the name of the game; and now that things are slowly steadying up I am back in school and also back to pursuing my passion of FX. I have 5 to 6 months left to graduate and plan on crushing these with a bang along with getting my portfolio pieces shelled out.
@Luos_83 thank you SO SO much for your post on here. Words can’t describe how much motivation your story has provided me with brother. Everything happens for a reason, and your words prove it.
@Fenix I’m really glad things worked out for you. Its very motivating to see people in a similar boat pull it off and I’m hoping in a couple months the same would for me too.
To all others, life has its ups and downs but if you love something never give it up. You may or may not succeed but never give up without trying. Keep your head out the water long enough and someday you will succeed.
Since my last name is Vleer, we are just an L away from being family, so you can call me brother anytime
I’m touched by your story, and I wish you all the luck and fortune in the world.
granted, I’d wish anybody this but I honestly mean it.
So, a little update from my last message:
- I got a job at Ubisoft Montréal and I begin in June 18th.
- I started mentoring at my former College. There are 5 VFX Artist this time and it’s a lot compared to before.
Things are looking pretty good for me so even if there are still a lot of things i need to do to accomplish my goals, i can feel a little bit at ease.