Last Updated on April 13, 2022
Motion Graphic design is everywhere. Be it movies, or TV commercials, or any other form of entertainment, or ‘Infotainment’, motion graphics are practically everywhere around. If you are unsure about the right kind of explainer video to spread your message loud and clear, motion graphics can be your best choice.
This video form is not just visually enthralling but also has proven marketing potential. Motion graphics can transmit any complex concept most memorably and engagingly.
What are Motion Graphics?
At the current time, video contents give a massive boost to any marketing strategy, regardless of the size of the business or the product/service. If you want to deliver your brand message or marketing pitch within a few seconds, there’s nothing more engaging than a video. Amidst all other kinds of video animations we see, motion graphics stand out the most, given its formal style.
This is an exclusive style of digital animation that has the magical power to manipulate an image. Converting a face into a moving character, turning a shape into a full sentence, a stock image into a video clip, so and so.
This form has the most sophisticated and elegant approach and can be well used for information and entertainment alike. Motion graphics can turn any boring information into the most enticing content. Moreover, if you have any stats, figures, or numbers to showcase to your audience, motion graphic is the best video form for the purpose. These kinds of animations can actively trigger human emotions and make your story even more engaging.
As we all are visual learners, it is indispensable that the particular form we choose to educate our target audience, must have high visual power. And that’s what motion graphic is all about.
The Role of a Motion Designing Artist
Also, one has to have a clear understanding as to what does a motion graphic designer do precisely. They create digital artwork for the web, television, or films. Specifically movie clips, commercials, trailers, title sequences, marketing pitch, explaining a product or service. By adding motion to the graphics, motion graphic designers breathe life to films, websites and TVCs, and make them cost-effective. Because traditional animation takes long in conceptualization, creation, and render.
Graphic designers with years of hands-on experience can indeed apply their design skills to making motion graphic designs. It is all about following some basic principles and knowing certain aspects of motion graphics. Motion design lets a designer create beautiful layouts and play around with typography, amalgamate the moving images to sell a product or a service. Filmmakers and marketers are expanding their imaginations as well as budgets to incorporate high end technology into their animations.
Taking up Motion Graphic Designing as a Profession
As there has been a steady growth in motion graphic design, more and more animators are taking it as a profession as they can see the growing demand in it. Though it is relatively new on the design front, there’s no stopping to it.
And today, we have a plethora of motion graphic design software at our disposal, that could be implemented to create high end animations. Designers like web designers, UI-UX designers, app developers – all these individuals are multiplying in numbers with the implementation of new-age technologies and other IT advancements. That being said, there’s a steady demand in skilled and savvy motion graphics designers to make the movies, TV shows, websites and apps, all the more enticing.
In short, being a 2D motion graphics designer is, in itself an achievement, where you can make a great career. It is a perfect concoction of creativity and opportunity given the present times.
Know the Aspects of Motion Graphic Video
So before you think of pursuing your career as a Motion Graphic artist, learn about the fundamental aspects of the form. The Twelve Principles of Animation as penned by famous motion graphic designers of Disney, Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas, in their book The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation, are still contemporary, even after 39 years!
Still now, those principles are considered to be the ultimate rule book for all animators. We would discuss a few of those principles and skills, along with some other notable aspects too. If you are determined to take up this profession and want to possess a fancy motion graphic designer portfolio, this blog is a must-read for you. Let’s begin!
1. Knowledge of the Basic Creative Arts
Well, the creative career of motion graphics is open to everyone. For the pro, even for the novice! So if you are a beginner and want to seek a job as a motion graphics artist, then the first and foremost skill that you must possess, is the basic knowledge of art. This is the very basis of any form of graphic design that one must have while aspiring to become a motion designing artist.
Prowess in traditional and classic art is of paramount importance that empowers you to be more creative in your work. And the execution of this skill takes nothing much; one can simply sketch an innovative idea on paper before even going digital.
This aspect of motion designing also helps to brainstorm ideas and in exchange of thoughts, that speeds up your workflow to a great extent. Using the software to create the graphics is always an option, but if you want to breathe life into the graphics, gear yourself with the fundamental and traditional skills of creative art.
2. Sense of Motion and Animation
Though motion graphic is just another form of 2D animation, it is not just setting some keyframes; it is more than that. Since you have to animate the graphics, you must have that eye for animation and how things must be in motion to create the desired appeal.
In character animation, there are humanoid characters that can clearly make the audience understand what’s going on in the video. But in motion graphics, everything you do, you do with the graphic pieces. You have to judge the fade-ins and fade-outs, where to put a little bit of exaggeration and where to ease out, etc.
Your storyboard might have the greatest of design, but if the animation doesn’t fall into place, all your efforts will go in vain.
3. Skill in 3D Modeling and Design
Though motion graphics is mainly a 2D form of video, one must not confine himself to a specific standard. With the change in the industry, an aspirant motion designer must adapt and expand. Having 3D design skills is one such adaptation. As a motion artist keep your eyes open, you would see a volley of 3D arts in brand logos, TV show intros, commercials, even in movies. A great deal of the future of graphics is in 3D animations.
Understanding points in 3D space, the interconnecting lines and the polygons created by those lines are a vital part of 3D modeling programs. Having these skills will take you to greater heights. So while you plunge into the 3D realm, you will find more opportunities waiting for you.
4. Grasp in Color Psychology and Theory of Shades
A motion graphic artist must possess a thorough knowledge of color psychology and how each color affects the human mind. As we know, motion graphic is all about adding motion to static graphics, so if the color scheme is distorted, the animation won’t bring that engagement level amongst the audience.
Knowing how colors affect the moods and feelings, both positively and negatively, goes a long way. Your motto must be to tune the audience to your creative thoughts. However, if there’s a visual jerk created by a patch of unwanted color, the whole motivation of the audience goes. You must be balanced with the color pallet you use, what exactly you want to convey with the color scheme. Is it love that you want to convey? Or is it wrath or hatred? Or is it strength? Pity?
Understand each humane feeling and convey your ideas through the right hue. If your motion graphics video is about winter, try to stick with white. Any color splash will distract the onlooker and make the video lame.
5. Understanding of Surfacing, Texturing and Lighting
For your audience, everything that is on the video is just moving shapes and images. However, that is not so easy for you though. A motion artist must look beyond shapes and images, and get the texturing right. If the texture of the graphic is not of high quality, the graphic will look bland onscreen.
Hence, an artist aiming to become a successful motion designer must have robust knowledge and skill for Texturing. He/she must know everything about Surfacing and how it is instrumental in making a 3D graphic look photo-realistic.
The artist must have the skill- set to incorporate the proper surfacing – reflective, rough, translucent, shine, transparent or refractive. Knowing which one to use falls under the skill set. Not just this, having a legitimate idea of lighting effects is also required.
Disorganized lighting creates an illusion in the eyes of the audience that is never wanted by any animator. And when the lighting is adequate and apt, the graphics are even more life-like and vibrant.
6. Mastery in Anticipation
This is one of the many aspects of motion graphics that must be considered seriously while creating a motion graphic video. It is a trope that usually prepares the audience for a specific movement and makes that movement or action appear realistic. If you take a sequence from a game of cricket, while taking the strike, the batsman moves back and rotates his/her upper body, swings the bat backward to get enough force. This is anticipation.
If there’s no enough anticipation behind an individual action, then there’s no force or energy in it. So understand the level of anticipation and how much of it you should put to use in your animation. The right amount of anticipation can only be determined by the speed following it. If the after-action is not so speedy or powerful, then the anticipation will also be minimal.
Mapping the right amount of anticipation in your video will not only sell it but also will make it stand out. And this aspect is especially crucial for motion graphics where you have to play with texts and typography. If your script demands to fly off the screen, the correct anticipation will be that the text goes backward a bit and then continues forward. From this action, the viewers will understand that something big is going to happen next.
7. Knowledge of Typography
The above point brings me to this one, regarding Typography. In a nutshell, Typography or Text builds a motion graphic design. And is one of the principal elements utilized the most in any motion graphic whatsoever. It can be deemed as the driving force behind every successful motion graphic animation. Generally, these kinds of videos only use the types to convey statistics, a brand message, even a product or a service.
Whether it an explainer video or a promotional, typography or texts are elementary. The right knowledge about this aspect of motion graphics will take your animation to the next level and also make it easy for your audience to understand the whole point of the video.
8. Significance of Establishment of Interpersonal Communication
Some might not take this seriously or might think this to be unimportant. But the truth is the opposite. Interpersonal communication is just as vital as any other aspect of motion designing we have discussed until now. Any motion graphic video to be successful and lauded with praise must establish a connection with the audience. If there’s no connection, the video falls flat.
Being a great motion designer doesn’t mean you create fancy animations or cool graphics. A successful motion designer must be able to convey their message to the audience and the clients.
And this is where the aspect of interpersonal communication skill comes. This forms the basis of any video animation that communicates a specific idea to the onlookers. Curt and mechanical communication majorly fails a motion graphic video, regardless of how engaging the animation may be.
9. Knowledge of the Correct Way of Staging
Staging refers to directing the audience’s attention to the correct element. In any motion animation, you need to make it clear and straightforward as to which item is of the highest importance. And then guide the audience’s vision to that particular object. Else, they would focus on the wrong element and the purpose of your video would get botched up.
As per the stalwarts of this field, staging is all about presenting an idea in a way that is unmistakably clear and understood by everyone. This aspect of staging is highly essential for any aspiring motion artist to know, as it determines the quality of the video from the audience’s PoV.
The placement of the objects inside a frame, the lighting, the position of the camera, all of these contribute to the staging phase. Understand the primary point of a specific shot and what exactly you want to convey to the viewers. Once you get this right, the staging will automatically be in place. You have to decide where your viewers should look when the video is playing. It’s your call totally!
10. The Prowess of Creative and Innovative Thinking
This one is a no brainer that a great motion graphic designer must be able to think creatively. Well, this is what differentiates an artist with others. Simply put, as an artist, you are the showman. And the end-users or viewers are the spectators. So whatever spectacle you present in front of them, it must be a creative genius.
This is another aspect that every motion graphic designer must be acquainted with. Most of the time, clients provide a very basic idea or a concept. A creative thinking artist would modify that little idea into something big to create a storyboard. And eventually, turn it into an engaging and appealing animation piece. Bringing the graphics to life is not easy, but when one possesses imagination and creative thoughts, it becomes easier to handle complex concepts.
So these are some of the pivotal aspects of motion graphic video creation that every motion artist must know. These can also be deemed as the essential skills you need to know to pursue your career in this field and make your video stand out in the crowd.
A profession in motion graphics and arts is genuinely amazing. You can take your imagination to any level you want. It is not just creatively satiating but also profitable. Given that 87% of online marketers use videos in their content marketing, it is the prime time for motion graphic designer jobs.
As per Cisco, by 2021, video content will account for 80% of all Internet traffic. Never stop learning or holding your curiosity. You never know wherefrom you get the idea for your next video, so always keep your mind open and acquire the necessary skills. Once you are familiar with the fundamentals, you may tackle any video project.
Apart from the aspects of motion graphic design mentioned above, always remember to evolve yourself along with the industry, keep practicing, have patience, look up to the professionals and admire the best of examples. Godspeed!