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Modeling in General
General discussions about modeling topics.
Modeling professionally
Joined: December 17, 2012
KitMaker: 45 posts
AeroScale: 7 posts
Posted: Thursday, August 02, 2018 - 09:33 AM UTC
Have any of the people on this forum managed to turn their hobby into a profession? Or desired to?

I work in VFX for the film and TV industries and a lot of what I do relates to model building - and even more so for my wife, who is also in the industry as a texture artist. I think most of the model shops that used to produce practical effects for film have disappeared, though. The last film I worked on that had a model shoot was Elysium, which I was involved with in 2012.

Next door to the studio where I work is a shop that builds architectural models for the construction business, but it's quite a different thing than the models we build here.

Are there any jobs left for people with skills in modeling? (...and I'm not asking because I want to do it for a living, I love my job and I like having hobbies that are separate)
Washington, United States
Joined: March 15, 2009
KitMaker: 3,058 posts
AeroScale: 702 posts
Posted: Thursday, August 02, 2018 - 10:49 AM UTC
Sort of. While I was in High School and College, I built models that were sold out of a shop in my local area. Then I went into the Army and stayed for 30 years. I took up modeling again in the late 90s when my wife asked for some models for her classroom (she was teaching at the time). When I retired, I went to work at a LHS part time, and started my own small business building models for folks who came by the shop, I had a lot of fun working for the shop and occasionally building stuff for customers. But then my business suddenly took off, my customer base spread, and I would get some very large commissions frequently. I quit the business about five years ago for two reasons-- 1) my wife finally retired, and 2) for my own sanity. I was constantly swamped with work, deadlines, and a need to be perfect in everything I built. I tried not to turn anything down. I was constantly building stuff for other folks, and never had time to pursue my own interests or dreams. I really didn't need the money, I was just building for others because I'd started a business, and had a hard time saying "no". I still purchased kits for myself, but never got anything done. Since I quit commission work, I'm happier, have more time for other things, am less stressed, and can finally build what "I" want, not what others want. The lesson I've learned is when your hobby becomes your business, you no longer have a hobby! I'm not alone, in my LHS time, I've met a lot of others who sacrificed thier time for a business when they really would rather have been pursuing thier hobby. You have to choose-- are you going to run a business or would you rather have a relaxing hobby?
VR, Russ
Staff MemberManaging Editor
Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain / Espaņa
Joined: July 04, 2013
KitMaker: 1,061 posts
AeroScale: 4 posts
Posted: Thursday, August 02, 2018 - 11:52 AM UTC
I do not think there is any room left for modellers on the movie industry, however if you are very good you can sell your models at a good price, or write for magazines/book editors (or both). You will not get rich but may make a living of it.
Rhode Island, United States
Joined: March 05, 2014
KitMaker: 2,750 posts
AeroScale: 301 posts
Posted: Thursday, August 02, 2018 - 01:14 PM UTC
Interesting question. Maybe you should ask Miguel Jimenez or Adam Wilder.