A lot of people have asked me where/how I get jobs as a freelancer.
Up until now, I have entirely been hired based on internet presence. Even though I didn't have a demo reel until a few months ago. How can that be? Well let me share a notion in which I fully believe and through my work have experienced to be completely true.
The basic concept
There's such a thing as what I will in lack of a better word call "3d Karma". I'll try to explain
what I mean by that in this post. The basic concept is that you try to help others as
best you can, when you can, and in return they will remember you and help you later if
they can. But it doesn't stop there. and this is why it feels a bit precievable as "karma" at
work. Third parties also like seeing helpful people guiding others and your "return" will
often come from someone else than the ones that you helped.
Another thing you can do is doing things that benefit the whole community, not just one person, a good example would be some free video tutorials, plugins, rigs and other content for anyone to use freely. Sharing "secret tricks" that you have up your sleeve will get you much more noticed than simply keeping that trick for your clients. The clients don't usually know if someone else around the globe knows how to do that thing too so it's usually less important to maintain monopoly of the skill than to get noticed by others.
The opposite of helping others isn't critisizing their work, it is whining about yours. This is one of the most damaging to your 3d Karma. In a production setting, it lowers your work morale, as well as the work morale of those around you. It's easy to give in to whining and joining in, and if the director lets it slip, it will slowly erode the fun of the 3d work
for everyone and everyone will be loaded with negative energy when they're doing their
work. It's less productive as well as less fun to work in that setting.
Another major putoff is of course treating other artists badly either on public forums or during production. That's a sure fire way of getting a bad rep. Being a bad team worker
is of course also going to kill off any chance of a career in production no matter how good you are. Those are a given, and not really something to that need explaining further.
The bottom line
If you keep your 3d Karma in good favour, even with a lower level of skill you will often be more in demand than if your skill is higher and your 3d karma smells like rotten fish. And if your 3d karma is good and you are of equal skill, the competition is already settled. Selflessness in action is the key, the fact that it will benefit you later is consequential.