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Steamthrower
03-20-2007, 03:55 PM
Hello. I am relatively new in the 3D animation realm. My business for the past few years has been in high-profile web design/graphic design. I am just now venturing into 3D work.

I have done a few jobs for companies (animations to demonstrate products, like nanospheres flying about, hazardous waste machine, etc.) and have charged by the hour at the rate which is standard for web design ($65/hr).

Is this a normal rate for 3d animation? Or do you mainly charge by project (i.e. a flat $5000).

Thanks a lot!

Andyjaggy
03-20-2007, 04:18 PM
Check this section for a thread titled "freelance rates" you'll find your answer there.

StereoMike
03-20-2007, 05:10 PM
What was the overall cost of that 65$/hour project?

btw, I charge for projects + extra stuff (I charge everything extra).

You should really dig into the thread Andy mentioned, lots of useful information.
There's also alot to learn about fish'n chips, especially chips, but after some pages the thread switches back to freelance rates.

mike

Andyjaggy
03-20-2007, 05:13 PM
Definately a lot of good information in that thread. Up to and including the stuff on fish and chips :) I wish there were a way to save a printable version of threads.

Adrian Lopez
03-20-2007, 05:30 PM
I wish there were a way to save a printable version of threads.Thread tools -> Show printable version.

Andyjaggy
03-20-2007, 05:44 PM
Oh. Cool. Thanks.

Steamthrower
03-20-2007, 06:15 PM
Thanks a lot, I should have looked further before posting.

By the way, the overall cost of the nanosphere project (a 6-second animation which included an electric pulse at the end) cost $300. Is that way under-priced or too much? On an animation quality scale, I'd say I accomplished a 7 or 8.

Bog
03-20-2007, 06:33 PM
Put the video online, and we'll tell you.

Long story short, 3D costs between six times and 50,000 times as much to do, per day, as web design in terms of hardware demands (and burning hardware out), rendering and workstation power demands, scarcity of truly skilled animation talent, scarcity of truly skilled animation talent, and scarcity of truly skilled animation talent.

lots
03-20-2007, 06:56 PM
Definitely check out that thread I started, plenty of good info about chips ;)

Bog
03-20-2007, 07:34 PM
Gotta have yer chips.

Andyjaggy
03-20-2007, 08:15 PM
Love the chips. I am so going to make some this weekend.

Steamthrower
03-20-2007, 08:36 PM
scarcity of truly skilled animation talent

I know what you mean. I don't pretend to be the greatest animator/modeler but I at least know about aesthetics.


Love the chips

You all have never had a good fried potato product until you've had the pommel stuff they serve in Germany beside goose and red cabbage. I'm drooling at the memories.

None of the Brits I know can cook worth crap - no offense, subjects of her Royal Majesty ;)

StereoMike
03-21-2007, 06:20 AM
Do you had to model the nanosphere? Was it a complex object?
It really took you only 4 and a half hour? Including rendertime (your machine isn't accessible during rendering and you can't work, the price should reflect that- rendering costs also money if you outsource it to e.g. respower.com).

I guess it was too little, but you need to give some information on the complexity and actual duration.

mike

Steamthrower
03-21-2007, 07:39 AM
I'd like to upload the clip but unfortunately it borders on ''confidential'' i.e. the client is supposed to have developed this new method for nanotechnology and I'm not sure if they'd like me to distribute it without their oversight.

Yes, I had to model the nanosphere. Each nanosphere had around 600 polys and there were around 200 of them. All floating around. The camera flew through them. After a few seconds they all got drawn together into a clump and an electric pulse went through them.

Steamthrower
03-21-2007, 07:47 AM
Also here is a still from another project I did. This is a 7-second animation that is supposed to demonstrate a machine that treats hazardous materials.

And you'll notice I used the preset hypervoxels; but no one except a Lightwave user would know it. :)

This project cost $375. It also included editing and some text near the end.

Bog
03-21-2007, 08:16 AM
Here's some patches, some rubber cement and a pump. Please stop deflating the market ;)

StereoMike
03-21-2007, 08:20 AM
yupp, you charge way to little.
The difficult part will be to raise the price on your old clients. They won't understand what have changed (in their eyes nothing, so why do you raise prices?). Prepare to some heated discussions, maybe loosing the client. Or work your [donkey] off for the rest of your life and never get where you wanted to be.

mike

Tzan
03-21-2007, 08:35 AM
You missed the question where StereoMike asked how many hours you worked on it. Its an important way of figuring how to come up with a flat rate.
------------------

I'll stick this here since I didnt contribute to the "chip thread".
I do architectural construction drawings self-employed and on contract with an architect.

When I get the job myself I charge $90/hr
There are some lower priced folks out there that charge as low as $70/hr. But I'm not interested in leading the charge to the bottom. $70 is really the lowest price in the area. Architects charge 5 to 10% of the construction price which can work out to $200-$800 per hour very rough guesses here. Although I do know a new architect who is charging $90/hr, to get started.

When I work for the architect I'm just making the drawings, not getting the customers. I get $45/hr which is a top level temp drafting rate.

Its a different field, but there are probably fewer good animators than people who think they can make good construction drawings.

Bog
03-21-2007, 08:37 AM
Phrases like "That was the introductory price" or possibly "I was suffering terrible gastric pain" ;)

StereoMike
03-21-2007, 08:48 AM
Huh? Bog, you smoke bananas? I laugh about everything you post, but at least give me a chance to know why I laugh. :)

Was that to explain the rate rise to old clients?

Steamthrower
03-21-2007, 09:12 AM
I began charging that rate to my old clients because I had done web development jobs and graphic design for them before at that rate. They have been excellent customers and so I plan to keep them ;)

However, now that you all have input your ideas, I plan to charge more for future clients.

And StereoMike, yes, it only took me a little over 4 and a half hours for that project.

What is you-all's opinion on the thumbnail I uploaded?

Tzan
03-21-2007, 09:18 AM
What is you-all's opinion on the thumbnail I uploaded?


It looks like the TARDIS is "suffering terrible gastric pain" :)

All that matters is that the customer was pleased with it.
I really have no idea what that is or what was being represented so its hard to have an opinion.

Bog
03-21-2007, 09:25 AM
Huh? Bog, you smoke bananas? I laugh about everything you post, but at least give me a chance to know why I laugh. :)

Was that to explain the rate rise to old clients?

Yep :) "This is why I only charged you that much last time".

StereoMike
03-21-2007, 09:44 AM
btw, I never charge under 300 EUR, no matter if I just sit for half an hour before the pc. Just because it's not done with that half an hour, there's the time I need to switch over to another project (in my head). And if I work half a day, do you think I could use the other half for something that pays the rent? No the day is away.
Of course, they can get additional stuff for a former project (e.g new picture with different camera view in high res for say 60-120 Eur), but initial projects never under 300 (for old clients) no matter how small. Even more for new ones. I won't move at all if it won't pay off.
300 for a plain box.

mike

Bog
03-21-2007, 09:47 AM
"What does 50 get me?"

"One line of text at the bottom of the screen for five seconds. In a plain white sans-serif font."

"What does 100 get me?"

"You can have serifs."

Steamthrower
03-21-2007, 10:37 AM
All that matters is that the customer was pleased with it.

Right. The customer told me it was an excellent job and promised me he'd have me my check tomorrow. $65/hr for this client may be low, but it's still a good price. It's what I get for web design, and doing 3D work is a whole lot more fun than coding a web page. So whereas I'm sort of stuck with the $65 rate for my present client, I'll step up the price for others.


"What does 100 get me?"

"You can have serifs."

I laughed here.

Bog
03-21-2007, 10:47 AM
I know I'm putting it a funny way, but the point's sincere: CG is a lot of things, but one thing it truly ain't is "cheap".

You could make it cheap, I suppose - bulk-buy a whole pile of computers, and set up shop someplace where two quid a week is Healthy Wage and hire a whole slew of people, teach 'em to do 3D, and just churn the stuff out.

To be honest, though, I can't see it ever catching on as a way of creating CGI. Hope not, anyway - if you can just throw large numbers of J. Random Person at it, then where's the artistry?

When you're creating 3D animation, you develop a relationship with the client. Getting into their head, and understanding what they want - often when they're not much cop at articulating their desires in the first place - is part of it. And again, that's time and talent that needs to be reflected in your rates.

On a purely logical note, anyone who's got the money to be playing with nanotechnology also has enough money to pay professional prices for their 3D work. If not, then we're probably looking at a Grey Goo Situation and nobody's bank balance will matter anyway ;)

StereoMike
03-21-2007, 11:27 AM
muaharhar, right, if they spend as much on security and hermetically sealed chambers as they spend on 3D there will be grey goo all over the place.
Starting at..where do you live Inigo?

mike

Steamthrower
03-21-2007, 12:02 PM
I live in the Midwest US. Not a thriving place for the multimedia industry, but at least I don't have much competition ;)

I've been to Germany though and I love it! The food is so good! Except for the herring...and by the way Inigo isn't my name, it's from that wonderful movie The Princess Bride.

Bog put the point well. I see this in the web design industry. This is what happens: some person in India gets about 50 computers and puts people in front of them, gives them a DVD on web design, and wa-la, we have outsourced web development. Which costs roughly 1/3 to 1/2 the price of an established US company. And which produces a website which is about the quality of Aunt Annie's homemade crocheting site.

My client here is a successful corporate entity. The only reason they paid so little is because that's the price I charged. It's a corporation; and understanding the logic or the corporate world I'm sure if I raised my prices they wouldn't bat an eye. However, I have made so much from them, and they are such a loyal customer, that I'm not going to risk it right now. They know what they want; literally; my contact there gave me the exact length, size of animation, and number of nanospheres. Fine with me.