Where are 3D artists in India headed in their careers: Insights from 250+ resumes

3D industry has been revolutionized, especially with real-time 3D and immersive tech. How are 3D artists in India responding to this massive change. We let their resumes tell us.

Where are 3D artists in India headed in their careers: Insights from 250+ resumes

The world of 3D has changed more rapidly in the past 5 years than it did in the 15 years before. The massive growth of immersive technologies like AR, VR, and XR (valued at $22.1 Bn in 2022 and projected to reach $144.5 Bn by 2032) has paved the way for real-time 3D.

With real-time 3D software, fully interactive, 3D models, environments, and entire virtual worlds can be digitally rendered faster than the blink of an eye – a significant development compared to traditional content-creation pipelines and workflows that took months, if not years.

The world is headed towards a different kind of future but are 3D artists equipped to keep pace? What are the skills needed to succeed in this future? Where do 3D artists stand today and how are they preparing to stay employable in the face of this change?  We attempt to answer these questions with a compilation of top insights we derived after studying 250+ resumes sent to us between Jan 2023-Dec 2023 for different types of 3D artist roles.

Only 14.2% of job seekers described themselves as ‘3d artists’ in their resume. This is significantly lower compared to the terms ‘environment artist ' which shows up on 23.8% of the resumes and ‘game artist ' which 21.4% of the artists used to describe themselves.

Key takeaway:  Job seekers are ditching generic titles like '3D artist' and going for specific ones like 'environment artist' or 'game artist.' This shift shows that people want to stand out by highlighting their particular skills. They know these roles are not just in demand but also catch the eye in a competitive job market. This change aligns with what companies are looking for – professionals with unique skills in creating cool environments or contributing to the gaming world. Using terms that match what's hot in the industry makes them more visible and appealing to employers.

Average work experience of all job seekers is 3.7 years whereas average work experience of Game Artists is 2.04 years.

Key Takeaway: This suggests that the gaming industry is drawing in newer talent and offers significant opportunities for quick career growth. The shorter average experience in game development points to a dynamic and evolving field, making it an appealing choice for professionals seeking rapid advancement and diverse opportunities, especially when compared to more established areas in traditional 3D.

Maximum work tenure recorded by our study is 12 years. The job seeker had architectural visualization, and 3D modeling as their key skills. The minimum join tenure is 0.5 months, a game artist.

Key Takeaway: The extended tenure in architectural visualization hints at a potential decline in demand or popularity of this specialization over time. Older artists in the field may find that the once-hot niche of architectural visualization has been overshadowed by the increasing prominence and opportunities found in dynamic sectors like game development where there is rapid integration of new talent into the field and the demand for fresh perspectives and skills is more apparent than ever.

35.7% job seekers have proficiency in Unreal, 9.5% in unity, and 11.9% in both.

Key Takeaway: Unreal Engine is quite popular, and surprisingly, many people are skilled in both Unreal and Unity, challenging the idea that Unity is usually seen as more beginner-friendly, while Unreal is for advanced users. The data hints at a change in what people prefer, suggesting that 3D artists might be starting their careers with Unreal. It's also easier for someone to switch from using Unity to Unreal than the other way around, which might explain this trend. The fact that many artists from smaller studios, where a lot of these individuals come from, are proficient in Unreal could mean that smaller studios tend to like using Unreal more.

66.6% game artists also mention Unity/Unreal in their resume headline.

Key Takeaway: Unity and Unreal Engine stand out as the preferred game engines in the industry, with job seekers increasingly favoring specificity in their titles by identifying as Unity or Unreal developers rather than generic game artists. This strategic shift is in response to a growing trend among companies seeking developers with expertise in these particular engines.

20% of job seekers with ‘unreal’ as a keyword in their resumes are freshers and 40% of job seekers with ‘unreal’ on their resumes are in their first job. Only 13.3% had unreal artist as their last job title.

Key Takeaway: Unreal-related roles are attracting entry-level talent which means that this field is not dominated by experienced professionals as of now. This collective interest toward Unreal, however, especially among those just starting their careers, implies a forward-looking mindset in the job market. The field is neither entirely novel, with enough existing job opportunities, nor too mature, experiencing a shortage of positions. This suggests that the current timing could be opportune for individuals considering entry into the job market as Unreal artists.

Only 11.9% job seekers use VFX as a keyword.

Key takeaway:  This is surprising because the VFX industry worldwide is projecting strong growth - $26.3 billion in 2021 to $48.9 billion by 2028. One reason for this contradiction could be that the increasing popularity of game development, AR, VR, and immersive technologies might be drawing artists away from explicitly emphasizing VFX in their profiles.  The lack of interest may also be attributed to a potential mismatch in awareness or prioritization.

7.1% job seekers already have skills in VR, and 9.5% have skills in AR.

Key Takeaway: The rapid evolution of VR and AR, making it a relatively new and expanding field where the demand for skilled professionals is surpassing the current supply. Job seekers may recognize this as an opportune moment to enter, as industries progressively integrate VR and AR into various applications, from gaming to healthcare and beyond. The lower competition at this stage could signify a chance for individuals to establish themselves as early adopters and specialists in these emerging and promising technologies.

16.6% job seekers know C#. 11.9% of job seekers have a skill in C++. 11.9% know Python, and 9.5% know Java.

Key Takeaway: More and more artists and developers are realizing the power of blending coding with design skills. The data suggests that C# is gaining popularity, especially among those starting in the field. This highlights its importance in the ever-changing world of game development and 3D art. The trend shows that learning C# can be a great f irst step for anyone wanting to enter this creative space where coding and design intersect.

Only 11.9% job seekers share common companies

Key takeaway: It is evident that the industry landscape is characterized by diversity and opportunities beyond major studios. The majority being associated with various smaller companies underscores a thriving ecosystem of growth potential outside the realm of large-scale studios. This highlights a promising scenario for professionals seeking varied experiences and the chance to contribute significantly to the growth of smaller enterprises in the field

Key Takeaway: While it's important to be familiar with upcoming technologies and trends, it is also crucial to know skills that have always been used, like Blender, Maya, and Photoshop to ensure long-term employability in a frequently changing job market. By mastering the basics, individuals build a solid foundation, but staying open to learning about new tools ensures they stay relevant in the ever-changing world of 3D art and design. This approach positions professionals for long-term success in their careers.


Vikrant is a seasoned entrepreneur, a 3D nerd and CEO at Convrse.ai. He has built and managed many small ventures, wearing multiple hats in business development, product development and sales & marketing. Amongst the accomplishments he holds close to his heart are creating over 200 immersive experiences for brands in the VR industry; winning the Best VR Startup award in 2021; and being the only Web 3.0 startup featured in the prestigious Your Story Tech 30 list. At Convrse, Vikrant leads efforts to revolutionize digital interactions for the new era of internet with the use of real-time 3D. Vikrant is a graduate from IIT-Guwahati.

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