Meet our AREA November 2020 Artist of the Month, Ariane Pelissoni! Ariane is a 3D modeler from Brazil who is currently based in Los Angeles, where she works for a games company. A lover of all things cartoons and stylized characters, Ariane dreams of one day working on a big animation movie. Read on for her words of wisdom and to discover her inspirational work!
How did you get started in the 3D industry?
I graduated in graphic design and then started my career working in advertising agencies and design offices. I knew that I liked working in an artistic field, but graphic design wasn’t for me. So, I began looking for other alternatives that were still in the art field.
I grew up watching cartoons and I eventually realized that this could really be something bigger for me. So I decided to start taking classes where I could learn 3D modeling and 3D animation. Throughout these classes, I discovered a real passion for 3D modeling and creating stylized characters. I figured that this was something I could excel at, so I went for it.
What was your first job in the world of 3D?
It took me a long time to break into the 3D job market. I went on a lot of interviews and my lack of experience held me back for a while. I think like everyone else, I wanted to get into a big and famous studio or a production company. My first job ended up being in a design office producing 3D mockups though.
Since it was not exactly what I was looking for, I started simultaneously working on my portfolio. I produced pieces focused on what I wanted to work on and after publishing projects on the internet, freelance job opportunities began to appear. From then on, everything happened naturally.
What do you love about your job?
I love the idea of knowing that I have no limits when it comes to creating. The freedom and ability we 3D artists have to make anything "real" is incredible and seeing my work in movies and games is the icing on the cake! I consider myself lucky to have found something that I really love to do.
What's your least favorite part about your job?
I don't like having to justify the value of my work to clients. Sometimes, people just don't understand its value and treat 3D art as if it was something simple, easy, and therefore cheap, to do. So, it’s important to know the value of your work.
What project have you worked on that you are most proud of?
It was a simple project but one that had a very cool purpose. It was a campaign called “Redraw the Balance”. The campaign aimed to erase outdated concepts of the role of women in society and help girls to dream big. There are a number of jobs even today that are associated only with men. With the campaign, we were aiming to empower girls to push gendered boundaries and help them follow their dreams. The project invited me and three other women artists, each one using their own aesthetic style, to draw cartoons of female superheroes (since a majority of superheroes in animation are portrayed as men). It wasn't my biggest project, but it’s definitely the one I'm most proud of.
What would you like to see change in the 3D industry?
I believe that, as a woman, what bothers me the most in this industry is the lack of women working in it. Especially when it comes to the lack of women in higher positions. We need to fight to take more space, have better salaries, and gain more relevant positions.
As women, we sometimes have to work harder to show that we are just as capable as our male counterparts. It's also common to hear comments like “you model well for a woman” and other sexist comments within companies that are predominantly filled with men. So it’s hard because we have to fight not only to be heard, but also to perform an equal role without the fear of being dismissed.
"We need to fight to take more space, have better salaries, and gain more relevant positions."
What is the most valuable advice you've received in your career?
Learn to listen to constructive criticism and always ask other artists for their opinion on your work. This helps to sharpen your critical eye.
It's not because you made the project that it means it is good. Be the first one to find problems or mistakes in your work and always look for more.
If you have to redo something that you spent all day doing, then do it.
What advice would you give women just starting out in their 3D careers?
Put your efforts into something you enjoy doing.
Seek knowledge constantly.
Do not feel as if your questions or opinions do not matter - they do.
Challenge yourself to learn and to take on more responsibility.
Stay motivated and ambitious.
Everyone has their strengths and weaknesses, but it's important that we show others how many talented women there are in this industry.
Want to see more from Ariane?