sensible_coder

I was hoping some experienced individuals could shed some light on some questions I had:

  • what range of costs can one expect to see or offer regarding animation rates?
  • Is it common to be charged per-second? per-frame? per-animation?
  • Can some animations be more expensive than others (walking vs idle)?
  • What are some some suggested places to find contractors?
sensible_coder
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Erikari

Hello! I can't speak for everybody of course, but the animation rates tend to vary depending on the experience of the animator. I've never heard of charging per frame/second of animation, as animations can greatly vary, instead, animators generally charge per hour (of their time, spent animating).
This networking forum is a great place to find talents and companies as it's specific to Spine, but I find that searching on Youtube/Vimeo for Spine reels, or on LinkedIn also helps. I'd be curious to hear other insight :D
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Erikari

Erikari
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warmanw

Thanks for sharing Erika, and yes I agree with you. I never charge per second. It is mostly common in traditional animation.

Sometimes I charge fixed price for a bundle of animations. If those are described very detailed. And I know the customer for a while. Since some customers just do a lot of back and forth while changing the original requirement. In case of fixed price I estimate the price or agree on their budget. A year ago I took a cartoon project where each scene was fixed 60€(simple scenes with humans making facial emotions with 3d head shearing), I didnt know what scene will come next, easy or super hard so I was praying before opening PSD :D. So I prefer hourly rate.

I work with different client with a different hourly rates. it depends when I started to work with them. Normally if I start with that rate I dont change it. So it varies between 10€ - 30€ per hour.

I can use some kind of software to track my hours. A software that provides the client, or if I work on Upwork I will use their native tracker. but mostly clients trust me which allows me to track my time with my phone and report daily(to avoid any surprises later). I never track time spent chatting or on meetings.
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warmanw

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Erikari

warmanw wrote:I didnt know what scene will come next, easy or super hard so I was praying before opening PSD :D.
The struggle is real :D

I use Baralga to track time as it's a free little application, although it's not very perfect. https://github.com/Baralga/baralga

I think time spent in meetings should be tracked as well, because meetings tend to often last over half an hour, plus your insight and experience are also valuable. I tend not to charge for quick written chats and mails though.
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Erikari

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warmanw

Erikari wrote:I use Baralga to track time as it's a free little application, although it's not very perfect. https://github.com/Baralga/baralga
I use Hubstaff with one of my clients.
Erikari wrote:I think time spent in meetings should be tracked as well, because meetings tend to often last over half an hour, plus your insight and experience are also valuable.
Good point
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warmanw

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kgambill

This is a great thread thanks sensible_coder for asking and thanks Erikari and warmanw for your responses.

Out of curiosity, what is the average amount of time it takes to make an animation? Or to make several animations for one character? I know that's a bit of a tough question to answer since it can vary so greatly based on the complexity of the character and animations, but just a very general ballpark would be very helpful, something like the 10-30 estimate warmanw gave above.

Also, have either of you ever done a contract for a length of time instead of on a per-animation basis? For example, a fixed X amount for 6 months of work at 40 hours a week or something like that?

I ask because our current game project is going to need a second artist at some point, and we're thinking the most helpful thing would be to hire an experienced Spine animator to help with animations so our current artist can focus on the 2D and 3D art for world & characters. Trying to figure out a very rough price estimate, which is why this thread is so helpful
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kgambill
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warmanw

kgambill wrote:Out of curiosity, what is the average amount of time it takes to make an animation? Or to make several animations for one character?
With a nice rig each animation may last 1-3 hour, then, may come changes but those changes can be up to 20 min, each request.
kgambill wrote:Also, have either of you ever done a contract for a length of time instead of on a per-animation basis? For example, a fixed X amount for 6 months of work at 40 hours a week or something like that?
I currently have a project that has $1.500 fixed budget, the final result will be a cutscene ~30 sec long. We agreed working an hour daily. and rough deadline is a month.

And I would strongly suggest finding an animator. since that pressure on the artist eventually will end up on quality reduction on both sides.
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warmanw

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