Is 3D Animation a Good Career Choice?

Become a 3D Character Animator

3D animation isn’t going anywhere. We see it daily in films, games, TV shows, and also in the forensic and medical fields. It’s a growing industry projected to hit $270 billion (USD) in 2020* and as an animator, you could be part of that growth.

If you’re a creative person who enjoys acting and storytelling, then this career might be the right choice for you. Animation isn’t always easy, but it’s incredibly rewarding. Like any new skill, it’s important to learn from professionals working in the industry because they started exactly where you are now. If they did it, why not you?

*Data from PR Newswire

Animation Mentor is Everywhere

Animation Mentor was the first online 3D animation school. Established in 2005, we’ve taught over 10,000 animators across 150 countries in 15 years!

Check out how many animators from the Animation Mentor community worked on these blockbuster films:

  • 30 on Onward (Pixar Animation Studios, 2020)
  • 20 on Frozen II (Walt Disney Animation Studios, 2019)
  • 12 on How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (DreamWorks Animation, 2019)
  • 42 on Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (Sony Pictures Animation, 2018)
  • 35 on Spies in Disguise (Blue Sky Studios, 2019)
  • 10 on Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker (Industrial Light & Magic, 2019)

And this is just a small sample of our community credits! We also spot alumni names in the credits of popular video games and TV shows. Animation Mentor is an online school with a global student base and we’re proud that every major studio includes alumni and mentors from our community. We really are everywhere!

Take the next step and become an animator today.

Apply Now

Animation Mentor Alumni Stories

Animation Mentor’s alumni have grown into great animators in the industry rising to animation supervisors or mentoring the next generation of animators. Animation Mentor’s spirit and mentorship truly resonates in the industry. Check out their stories.

Philip To

Senior Animator
Disney Animation Studios

How Zooptopia Animator Philip To Went from Animation Mentor to Disney

Read Philip’s Story

Usman Olomu

Junior Animator
Framestore London

How I Got My Dream Job with Alumnus & Framestore Animator Usman Olomu

Read Usman’s Story

Nick Kondo

Animation Supervisor
Sony Animation

Q&A with Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse Animator Nick Kondo

Read Nick’s Story

Teresa Storhoff

Blue Sky Studios

Alumni Spotlight: Blue Sky Senior Technical Animator Teresa Storhoff

Read Teresa’s Story

Luis Uribe

Pixar Animation Studios

Q&A with
Pixar Animator Luis Uribe

Read Luis’s Story

Mike Stern

Pixar Animation Studios

Alumni Spotlight:
Pixar Animator Mike Stern

Read Mike’s Story

Animation is a Real Career

We know that personal stories are great, but maybe you’re more of a numbers fan. If you prefer using data to help make your decisions, here’s some additional information about the animation job market for you.

Animation Job Satisfaction

The majority of animators you’ll meet are happy, creative people who love their job. Although they sometimes work long hours, they love the challenge, collaboration, and continual learning opportunities that animation gives them. Animation Mentor surveyed professional and student animators, many of whom described their work as a place they get to be creative, solve problems, and work with like-minded people.

One such respondent affirmed, “Doing what I love every day is the most rewarding thing I can think of. That includes animating, drawing, and creating fun and enjoyable entertainment.”

Another said, “3D is just right for me. My strength is in art skills and innovative solutions. I get to use both my creative and technical skills. I love to work when the people around me are creative, talented, and organized team players.”

Animation Career Salaries

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) current Occupational Outlook Handbook, there were about 73,700 animators and multimedia artists in 2016, with employment expected to reach 81,400 through 2026.

The BLS states that the median annual salary for both groups was $75,270 (USD) in 2019. Glassdoor concurs with that figure, but notes that the average salary for senior animators is $94,000 (USD) and that major studios pay more. One of the highest paying studios, DreamWorks Animation, had pay rates for animators from $110,000 – $160,000 (USD) annually.