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Do you know that getting a job at a game company is just one of the countless ways you can earn a living as a digital artist. Which means there are almost infinite permutations and combinations of how you can design your career.

And that is great news for anyone who finds themselves cringing at the idea of getting a job. We all know games are a lot of fun to work on. And we all have a passion for games and art. 

That’s why we are here, right? 

But at the end of the day, a job is a job. And not everyone is cut out for a “job” with a big company or a startup. 

So it’s very important to know your options when you’re making a decision about your career.

Take Michael Dunnam, for example. Michael is a graduate of one of my business courses, and is a great example of a “non-traditional” CG career. He runs a website called XMD Source, which offers brushes, alphas and other resources for Zbrush artists.

It’s brilliant on so many levels! First of all, Michael is a great artist himself and creates amazing resources. These resources help the community (and it’s a HUGE community, by the way) and also generate a decent income for him. In fact, It might even replace his dayjob income in some time. 

How cool is that!! 

He’d then be free to concentrate his energies on whatever passion projects he chooses to focus on. 

The best part is the XMD Source is his passion project. 

This is like a virtuous cycle of awesomeness where passion projects support and fuel even more passion projects. Isn’t that what we all want at the end of the day?

So … for anyone wanting his follow in his footsteps, here are a few pointers he gave in his interview:

  •  It is extremely important to add value to your community. The more value you add, the faster your career and reputation will advance
  • Look at your community, find a need. A gap that you can fill. And then fill it. 
  • What you can do as a student to get exposure and make a difference in the community

And that’s not all. Here’s a few more things he talked about:

  • What’s the most difficult brush set he has ever created, and how (I was blown away by this)
  • How to find a balance between what you offer for free, and what you want to put a price on
  • And  much more.

This was an interactive interview, with live questions coming in from the Bootcamp students. Maybe you have similar questions that Michael might have already answered in this podcast.

Tune in and find out. 🙂

More about Vertex School:

More about Michael Dunnam:

More about XMD Source:


Watch the video below.

Listen to the full conversation: