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Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist

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Andrés Ricardo
Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 8, 2011 at 3:12:21 am

I need some advice. Please forgive me if this is not the correct forum to post this question, but:

I'm a recent grad and have a job interview lined up at a post-production facility in LA. The position requires me to do relatively simple work, including rotoscoping, motion tracking, sky replacement, rig removal, and beauty work; I'll be working primarily in After Effects, which I have about 4 years of experience with.

The company has asked me, pre-interview, what my hourly rate is (I would start as a freelance artist). They've seen my reel and résumé and have liked them enough to schedule an interview. My question is: what is a reasonable starting rate to ask for?

Thanks for the insight, and again, I apologize if this is not the correct forum (re-direction to a more appropriate forum would be equally appreciated!).


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Chris Tompkins
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 8, 2011 at 1:02:01 pm

This really varies from market to market. It is also based on your experience. What the market will bare.
Can you find out what the average Freelance rate is in LA?

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Rich Rubasch
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 8, 2011 at 2:01:47 pm

It also depends if you will work on their system (typically less per hour) or at your own office on your system (more per hour).

$40-$60 per hour on their system to start.

$60-$125 per hour on your system.

Assuming someone who is just starting out in a decent market.

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Mark Suszko
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 8, 2011 at 2:16:30 pm

Freelance rate is going to be higher then the in-house employee rate. Has to be: you'd have more overhead on your own.


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Scott Sheriff
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 8, 2011 at 3:50:02 pm

[Andrés Ricardo] "I'll be working primarily in After Effects, which I have about 4 years of experience with."

What have you been charging during this time?

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com

I have a system, it has stuff in it, and stuff hooked to it. I have a camera, it can record stuff. I read the manuals, and know how to use this stuff and lots of other stuff too.
You should be suitably impressed...


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Adam Duplay
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 8, 2011 at 9:16:56 pm

I think it depends on whether or not you can produce "finished" work.

A lot of beginners work in assist type roles where they do a lot of work and move projects forward, but always relay of more experienced guys to actually bring the work to completion. $50/hr is a lot to pay an assistant. On the other hand, if your output can be billed to the client without additional touchup, you are worth much more.

Adam Duplay


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Tyler Grutsch
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 11, 2011 at 3:14:49 pm

My billable hours are $55\hour with my own equipment for after effects. Keep in mind I am in a small market. Helena, MT is less than 50,000 people.


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Michal Trzaska
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Jun 15, 2011 at 1:45:21 pm

indeed is a great place to start, they have a salary tool that will let you know how much people get paid in your area on salary. From there you can calculate you freelance rates based on experience, in-house or using your gear and so on.

Also Freelance Switch has a good tool to calculate your rate. There you will also find some numbers from a survey they do each year from different industry freelancers.

Also last place I would point to is http://motionographer.com/ they have a few articles on rates if you do a search. They also posted results from a survey that is more industry specific with rates for Motion Graphics Artist, VFX artist and so on.

Best of luck, let us know what you decided and how the job is going.

Michal Trzaska
Editor, Colorist, Director of Photography, VFX Artist and Motion Graphics Artist
MeHow Design
TV Commercials for your Google TV ads. Web Videos that get results


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Jeffrey Holmes
Re: Advice needed! Beginning After Effects artist
on Oct 16, 2012 at 4:47:17 am

Hi!

Are you still working in After Effects?
I am working on a student short Sci-Fi film and we need an artist to create lasers and sparks and such.
Low pay, but there is pay :).


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