Thought Experiment: Flame Veterans Career Speedrun - Building from Scratch to $100K

As a newcomer to Flame, I was thrilled to see discussions on making Flame more accessible and less intimidating. Personally, I’m not daunted by the software itself but rather by the uncertainties surrounding career viability in such a specialized niche. So I’m seeking your experienced insights through a hypothetical scenario that tests your ability to start from zero and strategize your way to earning $100,000. This simulation is designed to illuminate what a career in Flame realistically entails, focusing on the most lucrative and straightforward projects.

Scenario Setup:

  • You and your essential Flame gear/software are transported to an alternate reality, starting on June 1, 2022.
  • You have a suitable workspace, no bills to pay, no attachments or social obligations, or health problems, allowing you to focus single-mindedly on starting your Flame career.
  • Your objective is to earn $100,000 as quickly as possible from fully-remote (getting out of bed is not an option!) commercial work using Flame, focusing on the most lucrative advertising projects with the least artistic merit and cultural relevance possible (Life goal: Not become associated with creating an obnoxious commercial that goes viral).
  • You begin without any showreel, professional portfolio, or even memory of ever having created one. You also start without any online profiles.
  • You retain all your Flame technical skills and general creative sensibilities, along with knowledge of the industry, but lack a professional history or network.

Questions for Discussion:

  1. Starting a Portfolio: With no existing portfolio or showreel, what type of projects would you choose to quickly showcase your capabilities and attract potential clients? How would you go about creating your first pieces?
  2. Utilizing Platforms: What platforms would you prioritize for building your new professional presence and seeking out commercial work? How would you leverage these platforms with the minimum portfolio material or network connections needed?
  3. Earning Strategy: Given these constraints, would you opt for freelance projects, seek a full-time remote position, start a website/agency, or try a combination of these options? Why?
  4. Timeframe Estimation: Without prior work to show, how would you approach client negotiations and what tactics would you use to expedite your first earnings? Approximately how long do you think it would take to earn your first $10,000? Your first $100,000?

I’m looking forward to learning from your experiences and strategies. Your most detailed input will not only help me but also provide guidance for other new entrants to the Flame community. Thanks in advance!

P.S. I got Flame 2025 Linux Rocky 8.7 successfully working on my Threadripper RTX workstation, thanks to this community! Only took about 100 hours! I’d be happy to make a detailed post if anyone is interested.


Oh c’mon,… this is not how it works, this feels unethical.

Sorry, I am totally unaware. What is unethical here?

you may as well a read a Timothy Ferris book

Good questions. Don’t have a nice round answer, but some things to consider:

Generally speaking nobody cares if you use Flame, Nuke, Si, Fusion, or any other app - as long as the result is professional and delivered on time and in budget. There may be some clients who based on past experience have learned that something is a Flame job, and may ask for that.

But I have successfully delivered what the client thought was Flame work before I had Flame the software.

That negates the premise that you have no experience. As you outlined in another post, you have considerable experience that is relevant to finding clients.

The reason we use Flame is because it gets us there faster and more reliably than some of these other tools, and it is better for attended sessions (not in your scope). So it improves our odds and earnings. That’s the strategy part.

On the platform question - a basic website and reel is helpful, as these days everyone does the online reality check on you. But beyond that, I believe in the world of Flame, 95% of work goes through recommendations, networking, and talking to people, not platforms.

I have yet to see a request for a Flame artist posted on one of the regular crewing sites.


Am I asking too much? Participation is totally voluntary.

for me being a flame artist is all about who you are as a person, and if your objective is to earn 100k asap, then that’s a bad start

Seems equally esoteric to me, just the other end of the stick.

For me it’s a lifestyle business - I love working with the app and creating cool visuals and delight clients, but it better fucking pay well too.

I didn’t spend 30 years learning all this to work for free.


Oh I see. That bit about prioritizing commercial work is not a superficial motive. Just the opposite. I aim to separate my passion projects from work that pays bills out of respect for art.

Reads like your looking for a business plan

You could say I am. Is that unethical? I aim to make a living with this great tool in strictly commercial contexts, so that I can have a clean canvas one day to create real art. Is it wrong that Ridley Scott made a living off commercials before movies?

I just don’t think it exists, truth is I don’t think anybody knows exactly what there doing to get to where they want , there si no blueprint, just follow a path it may or may not take you there… if its meant to be it will happened you need experience first, I don know how much you have.

What in the fuck is this post?

It is basically a “Don’t Hire Me” sign.


That’s true. There’s no blueprint. I think the value of thought experiments is just seeing what different people would try in different situations based on their unique experiences.

Why is it a turn-off to employers? Are Flame Artists supposed to have some kind of mystique like a folk artist/poet?

Then all the marketing and business people should quit their job right now and become plumbers and electricians.

You can most definitely make a business plan with established end goals, do research, refine the plan and execute it. A long the way you collect some data of what traction you’re getting, and you adjust the plan, but the basic contours should still be in tract. In fact if your plan doesn’t have a stated end state, you can never succeed because you didn’t define success.

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Do you feel the force?

Haha. I am feeling something emanating here. :man_shrugging:

Or you could just say, “I’ve been studying Flame, I’d love to get taken on as a Junior artist and work my way up.”

I’m going to mute this thread now. Goodbye.


you are from the dark side, …

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