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7. Re: etc., etc. Aug 17, 2012, 08:37 Dmitri_M
These problems are not isolated to the gaming industry. I've worked as a CG artist in advertising and gaming for nearly 10 years. The large companies get the bad publicity, but nearly every job from the small unknown companies and up especially in the art fields feature some form of exploitation. Any industry built around deadlines and art production will. Working extra hours is the norm, the issue is that it usually isn't compensated. The closest I've ever come to being reimbursed for working overtime was being able to take overtime hours as vacation time later. I have never received overtime pay in 10 years. As an artist I cannot simply hop between jobs with perfect working hours and pay. Artists do need some sort of protection because they cannot do it themselves. Many start out having martyr complexes and simply do the extra work no questions asked. When you're creating your portfolio you spend countless hours perfecting work. Many of us are used to putting in extreme hours before ever being employed. It becomes a negative when you're no longer working on a labour of love for yourself, rather doing it in a poorly lit office for a company executing whatever it is they want done.

I don't think unions per se are the ideal solution, but someone needs to enforce labour codes. The companies simply will not do it themselves.

In the end I see only one real solution..
Get into a senior position which is unrealistic for many, or get out of development\art related trades and change careers completely. That's what I'm currently working towards. Of course I have intentionally kept myself debt and child free (I blow my money on other things like jumping out of planes to compensate) so for me it's easier than friends who have built families on their art careers.

Programmer devs are lucky in that they at least can hop into programming fields unrelated to the deadline crunch nature of the games industry.

This comment was edited on Aug 17, 2012, 11:10.
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