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How long should I spend on one model?

Hello
I am trying to build a portfolio and was wondering
how long would you say I should take to try finish per model
Is there a time frame I should follow?
models for games like a ATM or gun model

Replies

  • ned_poreyra
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    ned_poreyra polycounter lvl 2
    you should focus on creating work that reaches a professional level of quality and not worry too much about how long you are taking to complete a piece of work.  Speed will come with practice over time.
    Hi cradicoe. I'm also very interested in the matter of time and I also got only this kind of useless non-answers on forums, so I simply started asking people on Artstation how long did it take them to make a particular model. After receiving a sufficient amount of replies I was able to derive some valuable statistical data. Here are some examples (the images here are only used as examples of models of that level of quality; these are not answers about these particular models, as I keep replies I receive in confidentiality).
    All answers include modeling, retopo, UVs, preparing materials, texturing and exporting a game-ready asset. 

    Here is a model that takes a day or two:

    A handgun like this should take about a 1-1,5 weeks:
     
    A more complex rifle would take 2-3 weeks:
    Here are some other assets that would take between 1-3 weeks:


    A high quality tank like this would take usually 2-3 months. I actually asked about lots of tanks and vehicles and I've never received an answer of less than 1 month or more than 3 months. (Note the amount of additional geometry like various crates and blankets, that could be considered assets of their own).


    Second note: data I received comes from answers, and people lie. I did not sit and measure the actual timing in conditions of a proper scientific experiment. Asking people how well they perform at work is kind of like asking men about the size of their genitalia or how much they bench press. You might want to 'adjust' the answers by 10-20%.

    And one last note:
    Professionals give the "it depends" answer because their "depends" varies by 20-40% and they know the factors, while someone who has never worked in the industry has done models of various quality that took hours, days, weeks or months alike. It could (and probably did) happen that some of those models done in hours looked better than those done in weeks, so beginners are virtually unable to estimate how long does it take to make a good model. Time is an important factor and allows beginners to rank their skills and capabilities, and also estimate future learning time, so hearing "it depends" or "speed will come with practice" is not only useless, but frustrating above all else.

  • CrackRockSteady
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    CrackRockSteady Polycount Sponsor
    you should focus on creating work that reaches a professional level of quality and not worry too much about how long you are taking to complete a piece of work.  Speed will come with practice over time.
    Hi cradicoe. I'm also very interested in the matter of time and I also got only this kind of useless non-answers on forums, so I 

    The fact that you think this is a "useless non-answer" shows that you don't know what you're talking about.

    Asking a bunch of experienced professionals how long it took them to do various assets and then using that as a metric to tell beginners "this is how long you should spend making an asset for your portfolio" is absolutely absurd.

    If the goal is to make professional quality assets for a portfolio, the answer to "how much time should I spend on creating an asset" is "as much time as it takes you to reach the desired quality level".

    The relative speed with which the asset can be created will vary wildly from artist to artist depending on skill level and experience and it makes no sense whatsoever to try to hold yourself to that same time limit if your skill and experience level are not there yet.

    If a senior artist at a AAA company posted a question saying "I think I'm too slow, how long should it take me to make an asset?", then your list would potentially have some use, giving the artist a ballpark timeframe of what other seasoned artists are claiming.  Giving that same data to a beginner as an answer to how much time they should spend on an asset is not only completely wrong but also doing the beginner a huge disservice.  Trying to rush through asset creation to get a weapon finished in a week is just going to result in the beginner making a lot of sloppy mistakes and ultimately ending up with a poorly created, bad looking asset, and probably getting pretty discouraged about the result.


    So, like I said before.  Take your time with your portfolio work, make sure you are doing things properly, and don't concern yourself too much with the time it takes you to make each piece.  Try your best to hit a professional level of quality.  Once you're able to do that, you'll be able to do it more and more quickly with each subsequent portfolio piece.


  • ned_poreyra
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    ned_poreyra polycounter lvl 2
    Asking a bunch of experienced professionals how long it took them to do various assets and then using that as a metric to tell beginners "this is how long you should spend making an asset for your portfolio" is absolutely absurd.
    I agree, that would be absurd and that's exactly not what I wrote.

  • CrackRockSteady
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    CrackRockSteady Polycount Sponsor
    Asking a bunch of experienced professionals how long it took them to do various assets and then using that as a metric to tell beginners "this is how long you should spend making an asset for your portfolio" is absolutely absurd.
    I agree, that would be absurd and that's exactly not what I wrote.

    A guy came here and asked "how much time should i spend on assets for a portfolio i'm building" and you replied with a list of assets and specific times people said that it took to complete them.
  • ned_poreyra
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    ned_poreyra polycounter lvl 2
    A guy came here and asked "how much time should i spend on assets for a portfolio i'm building"
    No, he asked how long should it take him to finish a model for games. Obviously he implies that model is of employable quality. Why would he ask how much time should he spend on a model regardless of the outcome quality? That's a pointless question.
  • CrackRockSteady
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    CrackRockSteady Polycount Sponsor
    A guy came here and asked "how much time should i spend on assets for a portfolio i'm building"
    No, he asked how long should it take him to finish a model for games. Obviously he implies that model is of employable quality. Why would he ask how much time should he spend on a model regardless of the outcome quality? That's a pointless question.
    If you think that there aren't beginners who try to hit arbitrary self-imposed deadlines rather than trying to hit a quality benchmark, you must not be reviewing too many portfolios.

    Which is why the entire point of my response (the one that you called a useless non-answer) was that until you can hit a professional level of quality, asking how much time you should spend on a particular asset is near meaningless.  Someone should spend as much time on a model as it takes them to learn the proper techniques and make a high quality asset.
  • ned_poreyra
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    ned_poreyra polycounter lvl 2
    If you think that there aren't beginners who try to hit arbitrary self-imposed deadlines rather than trying to hit a quality benchmark
    (...)
    Which is why the entire point of my response (the one that you called a useless non-answer) was that until you can hit a professional level of quality
    How a beginner who can't recognize that his/her models are not of a professional level of quality is supposed to make any use of your advice that he/she should hit a professional level of quality first?
  • Biomag
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    Biomag sublime tool
    If you think that there aren't beginners who try to hit arbitrary self-imposed deadlines rather than trying to hit a quality benchmark
    (...)
    Which is why the entire point of my response (the one that you called a useless non-answer) was that until you can hit a professional level of quality
    How a beginner who can't recognize that his/her models are not of a professional level of quality is supposed to make any use of your advice that he/she should hit a professional level of quality first?

    Through practice focused on quality and not speed, which is meaningless and has no benefits at that stage.

    People won't be noticed for their speed. That is not something that shows in a portfolio and during portfolio reviews leads/directors don't read the artist comments (except if their interest is piqued by the image itself). Spending time trying to gain speed or meet arbitrary deadlines because some professionals hit them is wasted effort.

    Once you start getting close to professional level you also start seeing it and you start recognizing where you need to improve. If you can't reach that level by yourself then taking courses or getting feedback elsewhere makes sense. Whatever helps a beginner to train the eye and see what's necessary is what they should focus on.

    With time you also start recognizing when its best to move on from your current project and just finishing it. Though most people rather have the problem to rush through their projects anyhow.
  • Ex-Ray
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    Ex-Ray polycounter lvl 11
    Just one last bit of advice and to re-frame what's been said already.

    it is much more easier to improve your speed than improving your artistic output.

    I can give you a list of objective, actionable tips on improving the speed of your workflow. But for you that is not the priority right now, all your energy and time should be spent on reaching that 'professional' level, so you know for yourself what it takes. Once you get there, then you can prioritise speed to get to there again, and achieve consistent quality.

    I can also give a list of reasons why some things, in a production environment, can take a long time. As the reasons are so varied and situational that is why people answer with the 'it depends'. But these are things you don't need to know right now, just keep focus on the quality.

    Keep at it and good luck.
  • jStins
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    jStins greentooth
    Lots of good discussion in this thread, but I feel like this diamond from @Biomag should be highlighted:

    Biomag said:

    It takes far longer to learn to see quality than to learn how to make it.

    This is something I think many beginners overlook in their pursuit of the next tool or brush that will make their work great. (I'm not implying that's what OP was looking for here.) 
  • Alex_J
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    Alex_J high dynamic range
    Given the amount of time and effort necessary to get your work to industry level, I think the most pragmatic goal to focus on is learning to love the work and enjoy doing it. Cause you're going to be needing to do it a lot more than you probably expect. If you are having fun with it, you're going to get good. It's inevitable. If it's a stressful slog... well what's the point anyway? Who wants a career in art to be stressed out? That's not the point. 


    Simplify everything you can. Just worry about having fun with your next project, and let the hiring manager worry over whether you the next best candidate for their project.
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