#1 02-11-2018 1:43 am

agraham
Registered: 11-04-2013
Posts: 2

Dealing with burnout

So I've been working as a vfx compositor for years now, but I never really enjoyed compositing, so I decided to go back to school for something I really love. Animation. I've been juggling school and a full time (sometimes with crazy overtime hours,) job for a little more than a year, and I think I'm starting to get burnt out.
I'm finding it really hard to go to work, and then come home and work on my animation shots. I just can't focus like I used to, and its getting more and more tough to find motivation.
So, I guess my question is, does anyone have any ways that help them get motivated? I really love animation, I'm just not finding the joy in it that I used to, and that Kind of scares me.

Last edited by agraham (02-11-2018 1:44 am)

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#2 02-12-2018 1:41 am

J.K. Riki
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From: PA, USA
Registered: 11-04-2009
Posts: 3351
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Re: Dealing with burnout

Well, animation is hard. There are going to be periods in your life where it is just work and not super fun. I think that's probably the case with almost any profession, even the ones we love dearly.

Two full time jobs is also extremely difficult. There's not much you can do about that, other than make the transition to one full time job that you want vs. one you don't want plus one you do, yeah?

One thing that has helped me a lot in the past is to set some deadlines for that transition and then it makes it easier to "suck it up" until that day arrives. Right now (and forgive me, maybe this isn't the case?) you don't have a day when you're going to quit vfx compositing and do full time animation, yeah? If so, it may feel like this is your life now, forever. But it isn't forever, right? It's just this transition you're in right now. That may not make it EASIER, but it does make it temporary.

It also helps to go do some fun animation now and then. Don't do it to make a shot for school, or something for your reel. Do it for fun. Animate something goofy (or serious, or whatever animation you love most) for the joy of it again. You can't (or shouldn't) have all work and no play. So play with some animation. Maybe do some stop motion for kicks if you like, there are apps that let you do it quickly and easily with just your phone's camera! Animate on paper with pencil. Do some easy but fun exercises where you just go nuts with squash and stretch. Have some fun. See how it feels.

Hope that helps a little. I've been through burn out plenty of times in my life, too. Only thing I can say for sure is there comes a day (or many days) where you either push through or you quit and do something else. I myself have "quit" a few times, only to end up circling back around because I truly do love this art form. Some time away sometimes helps though.

Last edited by J.K. Riki (02-12-2018 1:43 am)


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#3 02-12-2018 10:39 am

fusedgore
From: Planet Earth
Registered: 01-01-2012
Posts: 275

Re: Dealing with burnout

If you truly love something you will never get enough of it .


Unless someone like YOU cares a whole awfult lot ,nothing is going to get better .Its not -The Lorax

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#4 02-12-2018 2:49 pm

RyanHagen
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Registered: 06-16-2007
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Re: Dealing with burnout

I disagree with fusedgore, if you truly love something, you can still get burnout.  The key is prevention, because once you're in, it's a difficult road back.  And it's different for everyone.  By prevention, I mean find balance.  Balance is the key.  Enjoy life, go out and have fun, forget about animation for a bit, don't worry, you won't completely forget it forever, just go out and have life experiences, it will actually strengthen your animation in the long run.


Ryan
Animator
"Frustration is the handmaiden of creativity" ~ Chuck Jones

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#5 02-13-2018 3:43 pm

agraham
Registered: 11-04-2013
Posts: 2

Re: Dealing with burnout

Hey, thanks guys. This has helped. I think I'm finally getting through it. I started doing a 25 minutes on, 5  minutes off approach, and it seems to have really helped. After a couple days of that, I just kept working through the 5 minutes, and before I knew it, I had been working for hours. Actually starting to enjoy it again. I think even just talking about it helps sometimes. I'm trying to make time to do other things than sit in front of a computer, and I think that will help as well. I have a little over 7 months left of school...just gotta push through.

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#6 02-26-2018 6:37 pm

J.K. Riki
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From: PA, USA
Registered: 11-04-2009
Posts: 3351
Karmojo: 79
Productive!

Re: Dealing with burnout

Happy to hear it, and thanks for the update! I'm sure it inspires us as well! big_smile


Animator Island - for Secrets of Animation, updated Mondays
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#7 03-07-2018 6:17 pm

Animationalerts
Registered: 05-18-2017
Posts: 18

Re: Dealing with burnout

Well,

This is like happens to everyone. Working on animation shots needs a lot of energy and patience, keep practising with your skills and understanding time and spacing daily by working on small shots is what can makes anyone motivated by comparing his new shots to old shots.

For some people, putting more hours and joining companies like dreamworks etc is motivation. I hope this helps.

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