Top 5 Types & Techniques of Animation for Beginners

What Is Animation?

“Animation is not the art of drawings that move but the art of movements that are drawn.” – Norman McLaren

Well, we know animation is much more than simply making drawings in a book and flipping the pages. 

The process of manipulating pictures to appear as moving images is what animation

The illusion of motion created by a series of images is more precious than any other form of art. Animators create their own way to tell a story to the world in a most interesting and engaging tone. 

This article is a great way to get to grips with where animation is now, how it was and what are the different types and techniques of animation.

Animation Today – An Ultimate tool of Communication

Each of us must have spent hours watching animated shows and movies.  Animation today is more than mere entertainment which we enjoy.

The depth and techniques of animation have grown with us. But the kid within us is still there which makes us more attracted to animated characters even today.

Have you seen the successful animated commercial of Swiggy? 

They used 3D Animation for the proper conveyance of the message through the ad. They have depicted their service in an interesting way to depict how the Swiggy’s go through the traffics every day through the struggling roads and still give a swift delivery of orders.

Thus animation today has a lot more aspects than entertainment. Animators use it as a powerful means of communication.

Animation has so effectively evolved today that it can improve marketing and branding.

Statistics reveal that including an animated video on your landing page can increase your conversion rate by a whopping 80%. You will definitely choose to buy a product if its visually illustrated well rather than just a poster showing its picture.

Let’s take a quick view on the benefits of brilliant animation ads.

– Educate while you’re entertained 

When we educate people through entertainment, it gains more engagement. Animation helps to achieve this drastically. 

The animators conquered the world of animation, a powerful media to convey a message and educate the world through entertainment.

– Link with the audience emotionally

Animation is capable of connecting you with your audience emotionally. Once visually involved in an animated picture or object, the sensation of ‘ being sold to ‘ is the last thing audiences witness. 

An emotional attachment to the characters can easily be generated with animation.

– Quick delivery of a message

Animation gives life to the concept and product visualized within the video that keeps the audience engaged with the quick delivery of a message. 

The complex process which cannot put in mere words is pretty much easy with an animated video, wherein the communication is as a magic

– Increase Audience Engagement

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An animated video included in a page can add life to the page. While these are embedded on video networks and posted on company websites, search optimization and increased traffic from video channels such as Twitter, Youtube, and other social media platforms could be accomplished.  

It makes the audience more understandable about the concept.

There are different types and techniques of animation, unlike in the old days. So let’s deep dive into the techniques of animation to make your business approach easier and sure visible!

Different Types of Animation Techniques

  • Traditional Animation
  • 2D Animation
  • 3D Animation
  • Stop Motion
  • Motion Graphics

Traditional Animation – Beginning of Animation Era

To begin with types of animation techniques, it is always appropriate to start with traditional animation techniques, the oldest form of technique used since the 20th century wherein everything is hand-drawn on paper. 

In this, every frame is drawn in a sequence and then it is put together. 

I am sure you would have seen the flipbook in the movie “Taare Zameen Par” which explains it all. It’s all about creating the illusion of movement from sequential drawings. 

Animators draw pictures on a clear piece of paper fitted on a peg employing a colored pencil, one frame at the time. 

Animators sometimes check animations with terribly rough drawings to visualize what number frames they’d want for the action to figure. Contemporary animation has become a mixture of traditional techniques with digital ones.

2D Animation (Vector Based)- A Technological Hold On Tradition

“Technology is a friend of traditional animation. It doesn’t have to replace it. It can help you do it” – Tomm Moore.

This is how exactly 2D Animation, one of the oldest and most used animation techniques has begun.

2D animation techniques started out as just drawings on flipbooks and have evolved into the digital motion picture creating beloved characters like Mickey Mouse and Tom & Jerry. 

When the technology developed, when we started to step into an era of digital advancement, the animation techniques were also upgraded to 2D Animation.

Here, vector-based means that it is a computer-generated 2D animation technique used to create a story to tell your audiences. 

Even though it’s one of the oldest forms of animation it is still used today in advertisements, films, television shows, computer games, or websites.

Some of the best 2D Animation Softwares are Adobe Flash, Toon Boom Harmony. CelAction2D, Moho (Anime Studio) Pro, Stop Motion Studio, Synfig, Opentoonz, Tupi, Pencil2D.

3D Animation – An Avatar Of Realistic Characters

“I believe in 3D for certain kinds of films. I certainly believe in using 3D for all things in animation because animation has such clarity and so much depth of focus” – Steven Spielberg

Let’s talk about Avatar prior to 3D animation. 70 percent of that film is perfectly animated. For this film alone, a whole new technology has been developed to make the character super realistic that makes the movie different from other 3D movies and the reason behind its massive success. 

3D Animation techniques or Computer Generated Image (CGI) is the latest frontier in animation to show the unreal characters in real ones. 

3D animation techniques show a complete 360 view of the models and make them look super realistic. 

Brands like Michelin, Mortein, Pillsbury, Kitkat, and many more have used 3D animation techniques to make their brands visible and set a brand image.

Softwares we use for 3D Animation are  Blender, Wings 3D, K3-D, Source Filmmaker, Maya, Cinema 4D, Mixamo, Houdini.

Stop Motion Animation 

You click a picture of the model/ product then move it a minuscule amount and click a picture again. Repeat this process to get strings of images with tiny movements. This is what Stop motion animation.

Stop-motion animation, one of the most easy-peasy types of animation techniques may be very realistic, moving, and stylistic in an artist’s hands. 

Tim Burton’s films like Corpse Bride, Frankenweenie show that stop-motion isn’t a genre, it’s a medium that enables performers to produce anything they think. 

Each protagonist in the film has multiple heads and body versions to capture the most human times and expressions.

Some of the Softwares for Stop Motion are  Movavi Video Editor, Stop Motion Pro, Dragonframe, stop-motion, iStopMotion, Stop Motion Studio.

Motion Graphics

While still regarded as an animation form, Motion Graphics are quite distinct from other animation kinds.

Motion graphics are animation pieces or digital images that create the illusion of movement or rotation and are typically paired with audio for use in multimedia projects.

It is not guided by personality or story, unlike the other kinds on our list. It is the art of transferring graphic components or texts creatively, generally for business or promotional reasons. 

Mostly motion graphics are used to explain complicated ideas in a very simpler and engaging manner so that the audience is excited at the same time learning something out of it. 

For example, MacDonald restaurant has produced motion graphic video ad to inform people what they serve. They used it for the promotion of their business.

Best Softwares we use for Motion Graphics are Autodesk Maya, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe Photoshop, Maxon Cinema 4D.

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