Video Animation Explained

In the world of video graphics and animation, it’s vitally important you know what you’re asking for when contacting an animation production company. There’s a good, better, and best with drastically different production times and costs separating the three. Each have their uses in all kinds of productions. It’s not exactly fair to say one is inherently better than the other necessarily when you consider ROI. Yes, you could get a super complex 3D animation sequence produced for your commercial, but if you don’t see an increase in sales as a result, the added production value it has will be a bust.

Conversely, if you market a premium product but have cheap graphics to show off how it works, the value of your offerings may not be perceived. Another aspect of whether or not to get more complex graphics produced is whether or not what you want to show in your video can be practically filmed. Maybe you can’t secure talent or customers to demonstrate your service. Perhaps your product is manufactured out of the country, which would make it prohibitively expensive to actually film. Animation can be a practical solution.

We’ll put you directly in touch with a designer that will either translate an existing plan into action or help you storyboard one from scratch.

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While pricing is subject to variability, you can expect an average budget for the following three types of video graphics:

  • Still Graphics: $250 – $1,000
  • Motion Graphics: $1,500 – $5,000
  • 3D Animation: $5,000 + $10,000+

Several major factors help shape the cost of video graphic’s production budget:

  • Amount of graphics produced or the length of a continuous sequence.
  • Design style.
  • Whether or not an animator is working with pre-made (and royalty-free) images or custom-creating everything from scratch.
  • Amount of revisions to initial design.

What to Know About Video Graphics and Animation

Still Graphics

animation production companyStill graphics encompass the very basics of video graphics and animation and can consist of things like text, 2D shapes, photos, or images like your company logo. They form the building blocks for what’s used in motion graphics and 3D animation as well but as a standalone element, tend not to move except with simple transitions applied in video editing software. They can be produced in almost any design software but frequently in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.

Still graphics are used frequently as lower thirds to convey information. As mentioned earlier, they can also show off your company logo or a still photo used as b-roll. Creating still graphics, for the most part, is inexpensive, as is applying simple transition effects such as a dissolve, wipe, or zoom effect.

Motion Graphics

animation production companyMotion graphics typically consist of the above-mentioned video graphics with complex motion or stylized effects applied to them. Typically produced in Adobe After Effects, they can provide a video with the appearance of high production value since the software has thousands of creative options. Motion graphics can either be used as an overlay on live footage or as a full-screen sequence to demonstrate a product in action or process. An entire video can consist of one long motion graphic sequence, and they are frequently produced as such to create entertainment value in the process of conveying the video’s message.

When speaking with a motion graphic artist, you’ll want to describe the general look and feel of what you want produced before getting into the nitty-gritty. Keep in mind that production times with motion graphic sequences tends to be weeks, rather than days. You should also count on at least one or several minor revisions to tweak various aspects of a motion graphic production.

3D Animation

animation production company3D animation is technically the only type of graphics referred to as “animation” as it involves not only everything of the previous two but also even more complex effects and virtual camera movement. An object or environment can be viewed from any angle giving it the term “3D”. It should come as no surprise that 3D animation can get very expensive, easily in the thousands but frequently in the tens of thousands with a long enough sequence.

3D animation achieves the highest production value and can be produced in a variety of software including Cinema 4D, Nuke, Maya, and others. It has practical applications in virtual world creation or showcasing a process or product that cannot be practically filmed. Your brand image is likely to get a significant boost when showcasing 3D animation in your video as well. An animation production company will likely spend a lot of time in both initial design and making tweaks, so you should never expect something like this to be done on a fast turnaround.