Career in Multimedia and Animation
Multimedia artists and animators typically do the following:
- Use computer programs and illustrations to create graphics and animation
- Work with a team of animators and artists to create a movie, game, or visual effect
- Research upcoming projects to help create realistic designs or animations
- Develop storyboards that map out key scenes in animations
- Edit animations and effects on the basis of feedback from directors, other animators, game designers, or clients
- Meet with clients, other animators, games designers, directors, and other staff (which may include actors) to review deadlines and development time lines
Multimedia artists and animators often work in a specific medium. Some focus on creating animated movies or video games. Others create visual effects for movies and television shows. Creating computer-generated images (known as CGI) may include taking images of an actor’s movements and then animating them into three-dimensional characters. Other animators design scenery or backgrounds for locations.
Artists and animators can further specialize within these fields. Within animated movies and video games, artists often specialize in characters or in scenery and background design. Video game artists may focus on level design: creating the look, feel, and layout for the levels of a video game.
Animators work in teams to develop a movie, a visual effect, or an electronic game. Each animator works on a portion of the project, and then the pieces are put together to create one cohesive animation.
Some multimedia artists and animators create their work primarily by using computer software or by writing their own computer code. Many animation companies have their own computer animation software that artists must learn to use. Video game designers also work in a wide variety of platforms, including mobile gaming and online social networks.
Other artists and animators prefer to work by drawing and painting by hand and then translating the resulting images into computer programs. Some multimedia artists use storyboards or “animatics, ” which look like a comic strip, to help visualize the final product during the design process.
Many multimedia artists and animators put their creative work on the Internet. If the images become popular, these artists can gain more recognition, which can lead to future employment or freelance work.
Work Environment for Multimedia Artists and Animators
Multimedia artists and animators held about 64, 400 jobs in 2014. The industries that employed the most multimedia artists and animators were as follows:
|Motion picture and video industries
|Computer systems design and related services
|Advertising, public relations, and related services
In 2014, a little more than half of workers were self-employed. Many artists and animators work in offices; others work from home.
Multimedia Artist and Animator Work Schedules
Most multimedia artists and animators work a regular work schedule; however, when deadlines are approaching, they may need to work nights and weekends.
How to Become a Multimedia Artist or Animator
Get the education you need: Find schools for Multimedia Artists and Animators near you!
Most multimedia artists and animators need a bachelor’s degree in computer graphics, art, or a related field to develop both an impressive portfolio of work and the strong technical skills that many employers prefer.