Previously we published an article on this topic, but that was not as comprehensive. Due to readers’ interest, I decided to publish this comprehensive article where we will be dealing with the salary for 3d modeler roles. You cannot rely on random data on the internet when it comes to 3D Modeler Salary. Also, the Post-COVID salary for the 3d modeler position is not the same as it was before COVID. So if you knew something back in 2020, use this article to update your knowledge.
The salary for a 3D modeler can vary depending on a number of factors, including their level of experience, level of expertise, the industry they work in, and their location.
We will take a look at the statistics based on Location. We divided the world into three locations. USA, Europe, & Asia. We don’t have enough data to cover the African countries.
We will discuss the 3D Modeler Salary here based on different 3D industries, such as Architectural Rendering (Archviz), Product Rendering, Games, Movies & Manufacturing industries. But for ease of understanding, we will go with the architectural visualization industry and base this as our starting point or standard.
3D Modeler Salary in the Architectural Industry:
3D Modeler Salary in Asia
The average salary of a 3D modeler in Asia can vary depending on the country and level of expertise. However, according to PayScale, the average salary for a 3D modeler in Asia is around $35000 per year.
We will discuss the 3D Modeler Salary here based on different countries, such as Japan, South Korea, Singapore, hong kong, India, and Bangladesh. But for ease of calculation, we will start with the minimum, which is Bangladesh.
Due to the cost of living, Eastern Asia's entry level is higher. That means an entry-level 3D Modeler Salary in Japan is thrice as high compared to Bangladesh. But a lead-level 3D Modeler Salary in Japan is only twice as high compared to Bangladesh. Here is how the data looks visually-
3D Modeler Salary in The US
3D Modeler Salary in the US can vary depending on the level of experience, the company, and the location. The average is something around $65000 per year, which is twice as high as in Asia.
3D Modeler Salary in Europe
Below is the average salary table for some European countries. So there is a minimum and maximum, which is something around 21K salary for 3d modeler of entry-level in Greece.
Here is how the data looks visually-
Average Salary of 3D Modelers
Data from Payscale suggests that the median salary for 3D modelers globally ranges from $35,000 to $80,000 per annum, which is close to our findings. The result from companies like Glassdoor may state something that is not realistic and does not match the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
It's important to note that these figures are merely averages, and individual salaries can vary significantly depending on a range of factors such as location, experience, industry, and level of expertise. These data can be deceiving if you are not careful. For example, the average salary for 3D Modeler role is 38K in Asian countries. However, India and Bangladesh are both Asian countries but with a much lower average salary than Eastern Asian countries, which is around 16K.
Also, the average indicates the middle. But it does not say how far you can go up or go down.
And when it comes to freelancer 3D Modelers, the picture is totally different. For example, freelancers asses themselves and determine their rates for themselves. They also tend to charge higher due to various reasons. I have experience in hiring freelance 3D artists occasionally. They work from the Philippines, India, Bangladesh, Greece, Malaysia, and Pakistan. My experience is that freelance 3d modeler rates start from 15 USD/Hour. The ones who work for cheaper rates are known for often producing crappy results.
3D Modeler Salary in other 3D Industries
The data we have discussed above is for Archviz or the architectural visualization industry. The architectural visualization and product rendering industry pay the salary for 3d modeler.
The Video game and the Manufacturing industry pay a little higher. Add 10% to the data we mentioned above. The Movies/Film and Television industries pay the highest rate. Add 15%-20% to the salary of 3D Modeler in the Architectural visualization industry.
Factors Influencing the 3D Modeling Salary
From the data tables above, we found that the following factors influence the salary of 3D Modeler-
1. Experience and Skill Level: Like many professions, experience and skill level greatly influence 3d modeling salary. Entry-level 3D modelers tend to earn less, with salaries typically increasing with years of experience and the mastery of more advanced skills.
2. Location: The geographical location of employment can also play a significant role in determining 3d modeling salary. For instance, 3D modelers in regions with a high demand for tech skills or a thriving entertainment industry (like California or New York in the U.S) generally earn more than those in lower demand. Highly skilled 3D artists are also found in Asia or African countries for 4 to 5 times less costs. You just need to find them. It happens because of the cost of living in different regions.
3. Industry: The industry in which a 3D modeler works is another major determinant of salary. For example, 3D modelers in the film and video game industries often earn more than their counterparts in less lucrative sectors.
4. Specialization: A 3D modeler specializing in a particular area, such as medical modeling or movie character modeling, may command a higher salary due to the required niche skills and knowledge.
5. Freelance vs. Full-time: 3D modeling can be done freelance and as a full-time job. Freelance modelers have the flexibility to set their rates but may experience inconsistency in work. On the other hand, full-time employees might have a fixed salary, but it comes with job security and often includes additional benefits.
Career Progression and Opportunities
Beyond the role of a general 3D modeler, there are numerous opportunities for advancement and specialization. Experienced 3D modelers might progress into lead modeler, 3D supervisor, or art director roles. Each of these positions typically involves greater responsibility and, correspondingly, higher salaries.
The 3D modeling field offers a variety of opportunities, from entry-level roles to high-level positions requiring years of experience and expertise.
Given the increasing demand for 3D content in various sectors, the future looks bright for 3D modelers. As technology continues to advance, the need for skilled 3D modelers is only likely to increase, making it an exciting and potentially lucrative career choice.
Remember, while salary is an important consideration in any career, it's also crucial to consider your personal interests and skills when choosing a job. If you're passionate about 3D modeling, the rewards can be great regarding salary and job satisfaction.
If you are looking to hire 3D Modelers, you need a different set of data other than the salary of 3D modeler. You are getting an idea about the 3d modeler salary from this study. But you need to know how to assess the skill/expertise of a 3D modeler. Remember, there are 3D Modelers who have been working for a long time as 3D Modelers but could not progress much with their skills.
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