It's been pretty disappointing in the past, because 3D artists are few and far between, mostly to be found in major cities like New York and Boston on the east coast, and a lot more on the west.
I found a site, meshfolk.com, and discovered that the studio is actually just down the street from my office, so I decided to call them up and see what they were all about. I wasn't expecting a whole lot, just maybe a newtworking opportunity, but they were kind enough to invite me over to chat after work.
On Thursday, I stopped by their studio, met the owner, and one of the modellers. It was a really nice meeting, and they liked the few samples of work that I brought with me. They're a Maya house, (meaning that they use the software Maya), and I use Lightwave. For those of you not in the know, knowledge of how to use different pieces of software can make or break you in this industry. Luckily, there are ways to convert from one to the other.
They asked to see some more of my work, so I pulled some together after I got home, and sent it to them. I got an email back praising it, and was told that they'd consider me for their next big project.
This is actually a huge step for me, because I've never really formally studied 3D, and never expected that my work would catch the attention of those who do this for a living.
So we'll see where this goes, but for the moment, i'm feeling pretty good. Below are some of the pieces I sent over.