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3D DIRECT • May 21, 2001

Eternal Truth of the Week

Off to Work We Go

by Swami Rendsanotsa

Well, the moon is in the Seventh House, and the job market is drying up faster than water in the Sahara. Day in and day out I see out of work shepherds and sand farmers listen to the town criers proclaim the available work for the day. (Or were they animators and modelers scanning their e-mailed job lists?)

If you watch the news, you know how everyone seems to be tolling the death knell for high tech jobs due to the decline of the dot-com. Does this mean 3D is on its way out and you should learn to say, "would you like fries with that?"

No, unless you would rather cook fries for a living. As my camel groomer likes to point out, there's always room for warm, salty fries. But, I digress.

Think about it this way. If 3D were dying, what would take its place?

Turn on the TV. Go ahead. Now look at what the channels are showing. From obvious uses like Max Steel and Star Trek Voyager to the not-so-obvious like the PayDay-loving elephant that's on the lamb from the cops, TV and movie studios count on 3D artists to create props, characters, even planets that would be too difficult to create in the prop department. And, as audiences grow more mature in their understanding of what can be done in 3D, you, the creator, will have to grow stronger in your mastery of the artform so the next time the audiences are left wondering how you were able to turn Julia Roberts into a Woolly Mammoth. The Entertainment Industry has a vested interest in keeping 3D alive, it's what keeps the Magic Factory going.

Now go to the doctor. After you get a prescription for that rash, mention you work in 3D. You'll now have a chance to sit back and listen to him or her tell you about all the new medical techniques that can be run in 3D tutorials. Surgeons can walk through difficult procedures before they enter the operating room. Instead of seeing a flat representation, the doctor can turn his view around, zoom in, even fly through the body cavity. 3D technology has become far too useful to be given up on now.

Finally, on your drive home look at the oil refinery to your left. (Or the next nearest thinga gas station.) Engineers have used CAD for years while building everything from refineries, to hotels, to bridges. Now they're going one step beyond. Corporations are taking CAD creations and turning them into 3D walkthroughs. Now, when a part of the refinery experiences problems, an expert across the country can quickly look at a reenactment and advise on solutions.

I can't promise you that your favorite 3D package or vendor will be around in a year from now. I see far, but not that far. But don't think that just because a major software developer lays people off, or your favorite plug-in creator closes its door, that 3D is dead.

Discussions on the natural highs and lows of the economy aside, you wouldn't be working in 3D if you weren't creative. Until Big Brother is a reality, creativity is a marketable asset. Get out of your tent and find a new way to sell your 3D talents. There are companies screaming for someone that can create 3D images and videos for them. Find these places and knock 'em dead. Leave worrying about the economy to the rest of the world.

Swami Rendsanotsa is filling in this month. In the Swami's free time he explains the economic ramifications of sheep cloning to his neighbors.