I’ve wrote about animators in the anime industry, and what they go through as far as pay, and their work environment.
It’s not the easiest job in the world by any stretch of the mind.
Information is scarce, but more animators are coming forward to share the dark side of the anime industry.
Being an animator in Japan
On YouTube there’s a channel called Animator Dormitory Channel.
Residents in their dorms share their experiences as new animators in Japan, working with studios, and what that’s like.
One NEW animator in particular called Ryokoshared their experience, and how much they were paid in 2019 since April.
“Ryoko” is an avatar that helps animators share stories anonymously.
Here’s the breakdown of one animators pay:
“Ryoko explains that since the animator started working in April, they made a total of 668,000 yen (US$6,000) in 2019, which is on average 74,000 yen (US$670) per month.
They go on to say that per month, usually, a new animator would earn around 30,000 yen (US$270) to 50,000 yen (US$450) per month depending on the studio they’re working at. The animator in question was both a freelancer and a full-time staff member during those months.”
The animator in question earned $6000 in the first year. But they say new animators in general will make $270 to $450 dollars per month.
Animator Dormitory in this case is the reason why this animator is able to still be an animator.
Same for others.
In “normal” circumstances without the backing of Animator Dormitory, saying this would be a struggle is putting it lightly.
“In the first month of January 2020, they only earned 14,000 yen (US$130) after taking a break for December and half of January. “
This point only makes my own point even more about how animators (new animators) will struggle without any backing. Or other jobs on the side. And so on.
The whole point of The Animator Dormitory project is to provide a place to stay for a smaller amount of rent.
This makes it easier for new animators to pursue a career. And make something of it.
So even though the light at the end of the tunnel is still far, it’s somewhat getting brighter with projects like this in Japan.