Animation is one of the most dynamic fields in the entertainment and creative industries. It’s a fast-paced, ever-changing job that demands artists stay on top of new technologies and trends to always be innovative.

The best animators can master their craft while also honing their skills as storytellers, and they know how to bring an idea from concept to completion. This can take years, but with the right guidance, anyone can become a skilled animator in no time. 

Mastering the skills can help you earn a huge income as an animator. The average income of an animator is $78,790, and the growth rate is 5%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, you can go well beyond those numbers with the right skills and guidance.

Take Art Seriously in High School and College

Make sure you are doing your best to learn as much as possible, especially if you want a career in animation. It is important to do well in school to get the best jobs once you are done with college or even before graduating.

Join clubs and competitions where people have similar interests as yours. This will help build up your portfolio and make it easier for potential employers to see what kind of skills they can expect from someone like yourself who decided on this path instead of another one, such as medicine or law enforcement officers because there’s nothing wrong with those types of careers either.

Taking art seriously in high school and college can also help you become more creative. It will help you think differently about a situation. In fact, it is proven that art can also help with critical thinking. A recent study by Jialu Gao shows that art can empower children to think seriously about critical situations.

Get Animation Training

The next step is to get some training and practice. There are lots of ways to do this. You can take online courses, attend a college or university, or attend an animation workshop.

  • Attending animation workshops at local community centers will help you meet other people who share your interests in the field and give you opportunities for hands-on experience.
  • If attending a workshop at a local museum isn’t possible, consider going to one at a library instead. Your library might even have free classes on its website.
  • If there aren’t any workshops in your area that offer what you’re looking for artistically, try checking out the art department at nearby universities and colleges. They often offer summer classes that are open enrollment but require pre-registration.

The best way of this all is to enroll in online animations training courses. Such courses are created by experts and taught by experience. Hence, these courses offer great tips and excellent learning materials. Thus, they can prepare you for the right opportunity and help you excel in your career.

Learn Additional Skills

There are many other skills that you can learn as you pursue a career in animation. The following is a list of some of the most common:

  • Learn how to use 3D animation software. This will allow you to create more detailed characters and environments than if you were just using 2D software.
  • Learn how to use video editing software, such as Adobe Premiere Pro or After Effects, which will come in handy when creating short films or animations for clients.
  • Learn how to use graphic design software, such as Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop. This will allow you to create your projects’ logos and other essential visuals. According to Zippia, at 3.3%, graphic design was the 6th most mentioned skill in an animator’s resume.
  • Learn how to use audio editing software. This will enable you to work with voice actors and sound effects artists when producing an animated film or TV show.
  • Learn how to develop video games so that after working at Pixar for 10 years straight without success yet still wanting more out of life beyond just making movies about cars going fast and then eventually dying due to their stupidity, maybe try something else?

Start a Blog to Share Your Drawings and Animations

Now that you’ve started to master the animation skills necessary for a successful career, it’s time to get more serious about your work. Start a blog where you can share your drawings and animations with others. Not only will this be an invaluable portfolio of your work, but it will also help other animators connect with you. They may want to hire you for freelance jobs or collaborate on projects together.

Blogs are an excellent way to showcase your talent or simply your story. Many people are making an earning from their blogs. You, too, can share your animations on your blog and make a living out of it. According to data, there are over 600 million blogs. Hence, you might need help with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) if you plan to make money from your blog.

Get an Internship at an Animation Studio

There are many reasons why you should get an internship while in school:

  1. It allows you to get hands-on experience and learn the ropes of what it’s like working in animation.
  2. It will enable you to network with professionals and make connections that could help you land a job when you graduate.
  3. Getting an internship will prove that you know how to work hard even when there isn’t any immediate payoff, which is something employers want to see in potential employees.

Consider a Freelance Career After Getting Some Experience

If you want to get your feet wet in the animation industry, freelance work is a great way to do it. There are plenty of animation jobs available online, most of which don’t require much experience. You can also find freelance animation jobs on job boards such as Upwork and LinkedIn.

Freelance work can be done remotely from anywhere in the world. You’re not limited by location or office hours like you would be if you had a full-time job. It can even be done while working another full-time job. Hence, many people opt to become freelancers, making this a large economy. Data shows that the US freelance economy was worth $1.2 trillion.

Freelance work will require hard work, long hours, and constant dedication. Don’t get discouraged if things don’t go smoothly at first. Everyone starts somewhere. But if making money doing what they love sounds good to someone who values freedom above all else, this career might be right up their alley.


If you’re serious about pursuing an animation career, starting now is essential. Knowing how to draw and animate is only the first step. Many more skills will help you succeed in this field. You can begin by taking art seriously in high school and college, but don’t forget about other areas like computer science or English. They could be helpful later on. 

Next, get formal training before applying to Pixar or Dreamworks Studios. Finally, practice as much as possible with some friends or family members who share your interests.

About the Author

author photo

Mirko Humbert

Mirko Humbert is the editor-in-chief and main author of Designer Daily and Typography Daily. He is also a graphic designer and the founder of WP Expert.