Character Artist

The face of a videogame is often its characters, and creating memorable ones has become an increasingly important aspect of game design.

As Character Artist you are a specialist in 3D modelling. Your starting point is the concept art that’s inspired the game’s look and feel - your job is to design fully-formed digital character designs that will be playable in the game software while remaining true to the original vision.

You will bring your eye for anatomy, physical behaviour and facial expressions to your skills across a range of software, to model, sculpt and render your creations. 

ArtEntry-level role
You’ll love this role if you’re into:
  • Designing things
  • Telling Stories
  • Drawing

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Many Character Artists have a degree, which provides professional development and a recognised qualification to employers. However, there are many pathways into the games industry and most professionals claim their journey was not a straightforward one. Above all, you will need to demonstrate passion and skills in your chosen field. For this job role, you should be someone who enjoys drawing all the time and likes telling stories. 

As a professional, you’ll be using a range of tools including Photoshop, Inkscape and Illustrator. We recommend you go to our tool picker to help you choose the right tool for your current level.  

Working in the games industry is highly competitive and you’ll need to make sure your portfolio (a collection of your best work) stands out to employers and course leaders.

As a Character Artist, your portfolio should showcase a range of art styles to demonstrate your versatility. Your characters should have depth and personality, showing movement, texture and a good understanding of lighting. Although you should learn by copying and adapting others' work, when you begin putting your portfolio together, your work should always be original. 

Once you have a portfolio, you can showcase it on platforms like Behance, ArtStation or through your own website. For more ideas, see our top tips page on building your portfolio.

Education pathways

Where are you in your games journey?

...the excitement of my clients, them being excited and happy with what I've made makes it all worth it!
Shayleen Hulbert - 3D Character Artist, FreelancerRead the full story
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