I'm in the process of learning 3D right now and it's a lot of fun making 3D environments. I think it'll be cool to create game environment art as a job. But the thing is I also have this obsession with illustration and concept art. With all the time it takes to learn the 3D software and create a simple model somehow I don't think I can keep up designing, learning 3D and studying to improve my art all at the same time. So I'm wondering if I want to be a 3D environment artist if it would be wiser to give up my pipe dream of being as good as the CGHUB front pagers and focus on 3D art instead. I never plan to give up drawing, but purhaps I need to focus more on stuff I can translate to the 3D world vs drawing whatever I feel.
I guess the reason I feel this way is I've always been inspired by concept artists, illustrators and comics. I want to draw like them. But now in college I need to be serious. I put a lot of effort learning how to draw, but I don't draw my own stuff consistently enough to make a career, whereas I can spend an entire day in Maya or UDK. Perhaps I shouldn't worry about doing the kind of stuff I liked as a kid anymore, and just appreciate the illustrations and designs put out by other people. I sorta got over this with other stuff. Like when I was a kid I wanted to work in live action films, draw comics and animation. I ended up getting to try all of those out and sure they were fun, but I could live without them. Problem is with 3D art vs illustration vs design I'm still obsessed with all of those and I want to create badass stuff, but it's not possible to be badass at all 3. School sorta throws everything in your face and provides a lot of options but they don't make it easy to focus on one of those paths.
I'm sure there are a lot of you who wanted to do illustration or concept art professionally but ended up taking different artistic paths, maybe you're even a 3D artist now and just draw for fun, so it will be interesting to get your opinion. What path did you end up taking and did it differ from the original influences which got you into doing art in the first place?
edit: Just to clarify, if I do end up focusing on 3D I will still do the occasional illustration and designs for fun, but more of a hobby than trying to make amazing stuff. And I'm always studying by life drawing, color theory, anatomy, etc cause those are important for every artist.