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How did you get your first game artist jobs?

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Hi guys, I am currently researching how to get into the industry as a game artist and as of right now, I am a college freshmen taking introductory art courses (So of course, I don't have the experience or the degree yet). Still, I am looking for a non game industry related job that could build my experience and my hope is that by the time I get my art degree, I would have a chance to break into the game industry. For those of you in the industry, can you post how did you get your first game artist jobs?

Thanks for the help,
Eric

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I can't say I'm in the industry because I'm a freelancer/indie game developer, but I would advice you that while it's good to have a n all around art background, try to figure out what exactly you want to do. Is it concept art, is it character animation, environments etc? This may all seem fuzzy to you right now, but keep a sketchbook with you everyday and draw the stuff around you. After a year or so refer back to that and take note of what you instinctively were "drawn" to, and that's probably close to what you would like to do in the industry. As you go through college start focusing in on that specialization and making sure that you're really good at that one thing.

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