While the Anime industry is definitely a global phenomenon, you may be as surprised to read the following article as I was when I first read it.
The problems plaguing the industry are numerous. Seeking lower costs, production companies for decades have been outsourcing the work to animation companies in South Korea, India, Vietnam and elsewhere, where scores of trade schools have cropped up and artists can be hired more readily.
As more and more jobs are outsourced, more and more jobs in Japan are becoming unnecessary, and so artists in Japan are increasingly finding their jobs at risk.
The article, posted by the Los Angeles Times, highlights the situation of 26-year old Aye Yokura, an anime artist who only makes around $10,000 per YEAR and lives at home with her mother to make ends meet. That surprised me.
In an industry with such a large global fanbase, I wouldn’t expect that its key animators and artists made so little, nor that their jobs were continually in jeopardy.
I’m sure there are millions upon millions of young people around the world who dream of one day being an anime artist. This article and others like it will probably put a little damper on those dreams, as it may not really be as perfect of a profession as one might think.
It’s a good thing I wasn’t dreaming of becoming an anime artist.
Of course, anime workers are not the only ones experiencing job troubles due to outsourcing; that problem is prevalent in all sorts of professional fields, and this is just another case of it having negative impacts on a certain skill group.