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What is It Like to Be an Animator Working Freelance?

ben marvazi 2020

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As a freelance animator, you have the freedom to work wherever and whenever you want. You can do your own thing and make projects that interest you rather than following someone else's instructions. 

This isn't always easy though, in fact, it can be really hard sometimes! But if you love working on animation projects and being creative, it's worth it. Here are some of the positives and some other challenges to consider before taking the plunge and discovering what is it like to be an animator working freelance.

Being A Freelance Animator is One of The Best Jobs

Freelance animator working from home

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Being a freelance animator is one of the best jobs in the world! You get to make movies, games, and other media. You create characters, worlds, and stories. You work with other talented people who also love what they do. And you get to enjoy working in a fun environment that includes playing video games or reading comics when you're not busy animating.

Being freelance means more flexibility with your schedule so that you can spend time with family or take vacations whenever you want (or both).

What is It Like to Be an Animator? Your Office Is Anywhere!

freelance animator's can work from anywhere such as this home office set up

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When it comes to a freelance animator's office, there are no set rules. You can work from home or at a coffee shop or in a coworking space. As long as you have access to the Internet and some kind of desk for your computer, you'll be fine!

It's important to have a comfortable workspace because working all day can be hard on your body if the chair is uncomfortable or if the lighting isn't right. It also helps if other people aren't distracting you by coming into your office while they talk on their phone or eat lunch nearby - or worse yet: try talking with them while they're doing those things! 

If this happens too often then I would suggest finding another place where there are fewer distractions (like an empty conference room).

There Are Many Job Opportunities

Freelance animator girl working all day and all night

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Besides working from anywhere, another major positive of what is it like to be an animator working freelance is that there are many ways to get freelance jobs. You can find work through online freelancing sites like Upwork and Freelancer, or on job boards that offer animation jobs. 

It's also possible for you to get hired directly by the company that wants your services if they see your portfolio on a website such as Behance or Dribbble and like what they see. Finally, some animators find work through referrals from friends who have been successful in finding clients themselves (or even just one client).

The Job Market Varies Drastically

Garfield typing on his laptop saying I'm working

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Animators working freelance have the ability to choose the projects they work on, which means that there's no guarantee of regular work with a studio. In fact, most freelance animators will be hired on an as-needed basis (i.e., when someone needs an animator for a specific project). 

This can be both good and bad: it gives you more freedom in choosing what kind of animation you want to do and how much money you make from each job; however, if your client decides not to hire someone else after all, then that could mean losing out on future opportunities.

So, if you’re wondering what is it like to be an animator working freelance, the upside is that freelance animators have more power over their careers than those who are employed full-time at a studio because freelancers aren't locked into any one company or project - they're free agents!

Being A Freelance Animator Requires Patience

Michael Angelo painting of Gods hands with the loading symbol between them

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The process of being hired as a freelance animator can take time and patience. You have to wait until your dream company finds a use for your skillset. The more flexible you are with accepting any type of work, the more opportunities will open up for you.

You should also be proactive in your search for work by networking with other animators and artists who might need help on projects that interest them. Make sure to communicate well with clients, colleagues, and supervisors so that everyone is on the same page about what's happening throughout the project's lifecycle and timeline! 

Freelance Animators Need to be Versatile

Character with 6 arms multitasking with mouse, pen, keyboard, coffee, notes and a doughnut

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Animators, like many other freelancers, are often called upon to do a variety of jobs. While animation may be the most common thing they do and what they are most known for, it is not always the case. Freelance animators often have to be versatile and can do many different types of work. This includes illustration, graphic design, and concept art (drawing storyboards).

Freelance Animators Need Many Skills 

Sponge Bob dealing out cards saying simply a skill issue

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Animators need to be proficient in a number of areas, including drawing and writing computer code. But there are also other skills that freelance animators need to have, the two very important ones are communication and time management.

You will have to communicate with clients, whether they are individuals or companies, in order to get work done on time and within budget. This means being able to explain what you want them to do or understand what they want from you clearly enough so that everyone understands each other's expectations. It also involves listening carefully when someone else talks so that you can give them the information they need without missing anything important!

As a freelancer who works independently from home (or wherever), it's up to YOU how much money YOU earn by doing YOUR job well! Whether this means working longer hours than normal during peak seasons for projects at hand or taking some time off during slow periods - it all comes down to "how efficiently" one manages their schedule(s).

Most Freelance Animators Are Paid Well

character counting their money on their bed next to their black cat

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Although wages vary drastically from company to company and even from project to project, most animators across the board are paid well. The average salary for a freelance animator varies depending on industry experience and location.

As a freelancer who works remotely from home, there are no benefits provided by your employers such as health insurance or retirement plans - so it's important that you save money on those fronts yourself.

Keeping Up To Date With The Trends And Technology

hand swiping on phone showing what is It like to be an animator working freelance and keeping up with trends and technology

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As an animator working freelance, it's important to keep up to date with trends and tech but also to keep learning new things because things are constantly changing. For example: if you want to become an expert in 3D modeling software like Maya or Blender (or any other), there are plenty of online courses available for free! 

Keeping Your Clients Happy

designer working and client punching him in the face through his computer screen

GIF by DeeKay via GIPHY

As an animator working freelance, you have to be good at keeping your clients happy. The client is always right (and if they're not, there's always room for improvement).

This may seem like an obvious statement but it can be tricky when you're working from home and only communicating with them via email or phone calls. You need to be able to explain yourself clearly and find solutions when something doesn't go according to plan - otherwise, you could lose business fast!

The Importance of Accepting Feedback

Mr. Burns from the Simpsons shedding a page and throwing it out the window saying thanks for your feedback to Homer

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There are many ways to learn about how to improve your skills as a freelance animator but one great way is by accepting feedback from others. 

Share your work with other animators and ask their honest opinions about what they think and if it is unsatisfactory think about what to do differently next time. This will help improve your animating skills and also boost your animator's networking circle.

The Best Part of Being an Animator Working Freelance

Women character telling man that she's officially the boss!

GIF by Inside Job via Tenor

So, what is it like to be an animator working freelance? Well, one of the best parts about working as a freelance animator is being your own boss! You can work from home, set your own hours and choose how much or how little effort you put into each project. 

If a client doesn't pay on time or threatens to sue for copyright infringement, it's up to you to decide whether or not to keep working with them. This freedom gives freelancers lots of opportunities for financial success; however, it also means that they have no one else looking out for their interests - so they need some good organizational skills!

What is It Like to Be an Animator Working Freelance?

Man working at his desk with two computer screens typing with head phones on

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If you're looking to work as a freelance animator, it's important to have a strong portfolio and be willing to learn new skills. Freelancing allows you to work on different projects with different companies, which means that your skills will always remain relevant in this industry. It can be difficult finding work at first, but if you're patient enough then chances are good that one day soon someone will find their way into your inbox! 

For more information about what is it like to be an animator working freelance, as well as answers to any other questions you might have about working as a freelance animator, be sure to follow our blogs, check out our free masterclass, and our Animation Business Accelerator Program, download a copy of our free marketing handbook, and check out our blog on “How to Start an Animation Studio”!

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