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I'm trying to fix my life, but I don't know how to handle huge employment gaps in my job history

- 3 years of university (worthless, made-up degree). Failed 3 years in (out of 5 years).

- 1 year unemployed.

- Worked for 1 year in a warehouse. Quit.

- Worked for a little over 1 year as a graphic designer. Fired.

- 1 year unemployed.

- "Self-employed" 3D artist for 4 years. Fired.

- 1 year unemployed.

- Worked for 6 months as a 3D artist. Fired.

- 2 years unemployed.

- Working in a warehouse right now for a few months. Close to being fired again, probably.

As you can see, my "job history" is one, huge, ENORMOUS, glowing red flag. My life was a disaster in general. I'm over 30 and not only I constantly fail as an artist, I can't even hold a simple warehouse job. I'm trying to straighten-up my life though, but I don't know how to handle those huge employment gaps in my resume. Because if I just write the truth, no one would ever hire me.

I failed univeristy, because I had no one to make mandatory group projects with. After 3 years I didn't make any friends, I was too scared to talk to people. From the first graphic design job I was fired for not being able to realise CEO's vision too many times. The "self-employment" part was selling assets online, which made me like 25-50% of a minimum wage at best. From the only 3D art job I was fired for being too slow. I can't provide any recommendations. All my employers I'm sure would advise against hiring me. I just suck, at everything. I'm slow, it takes me 3-4x as much time to learn something as it takes a normal person, I get stressed easily and make mistakes. But for the last two years I've been diligently doing courses, learning software and professional workflows and I think I'm finally prepared to get hired as a 3D modeler and do a good job. I'm reworking my portfolio, I know what studios are looking for and I know how to do it. What I don't know is how to deal with my past in the resume. I have to figure out something. It's either this or I finally get fired from life.


  • Tiles
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    Tiles greentooth

    May i carefully point you onto the real problem? Imho you need some professional help to get your life sorted. The gaps in your job history is not the cause, it's a symptom.

    What does completely not fit together is that at the one hand you have been at a university, and at the other hand you claim to be too dumb for life. Maybe 3D simply is not for you. The bar here is really high nowadays, lots of competition, and the 3D job can easily eat you up. Maybe the warehouse job is nothing for you neither. It's the other end with a bar too low. A clever and creative guy will die in such a job. Find out at what you are good at and what you love to do. Don't even try to be good at the things that you hate to do.

    And when you deliver quality work then nobody asks you about your history. They buy your working power, not your life history. And efficient working can be learned. That's the self optimization every 3D artist is permanently working at. And grow yourself a thick skin. Being fired is part of the job. At least when you work in game dev ;)

  • spring_jack

    University doesn't mean anything in my country. They're free and worth nothing. They make-up stupid degrees and accept anyone to suck government subsidies and grants.

    I know 3D isn't for me. I just don't have a choice. I'm way, WAY past the point of "figuring out myself", I need a job that pays. And 3D is the only thing I know. I never wanted to be a 3D artist, I wanted to be a solo game developer. "Don't even try to be good at the things that you hate to do." Yeah. Bullshit. I tried to do what I love for over 14 years. Look where I'm at now.

  • Tiles
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    Tiles greentooth

    University doesn't mean anything in my country. They're free and worth nothing

    But it means that you are not without knowledge and intelligence. And this makes a difference.

    "Don't even try to be good at the things that you hate to do." Yeah. Bullshit. 

    I did not mean that you should only do what you love. I meant to avoid what you really hate since it will break you.

    Look where I'm at now.

    At the point where you woke up. At the point where you should rethink your strategies since the current strategy has modeled yourself into a corner. And it is never too late for that. What options do you really have with your current skills? What is the best strategy? Maybe you need to expand your skills. When i have learned one thing in my life then that learning never stops.

    For example, you can live from 3D content without to be an employee in a studio. You could try to sell assets at the unity store for example. Or when you have a passion for games, programmers are more wanted than graphics artists. You could even fulfill your dream and develop and sell your own games. Steam is full of low budged and low quality games. But beware, developing a game is a time sink. Or switch to another graphics related job. Gamedev is a tough one. And so on. You can even make money by filling out forms and clicking at banners all the day. Lousy paid though ...

    You could also try to keep your current job and expand from there, in your spare time. Until you found the one thing that pays enough. Life is full of compromises. Maybe you should also think about your demands on life. Other people live under a bridge ...

    In the end you need some food at the table. This is priority number one. So check your options.

  • neilberard
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    neilberard polycounter lvl 16

    This is a difficult industry to be in, especially if you're just starting out. Having gaps in one's resume is totally understandable. My two cents:

    Don't be afraid to make mistakes, it's part of the job! The quicker you get them out, the faster you learn.

    Do communicate well and be nice to people. Can't stress this enough.

    Work on your portfolio and focus on quality.

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