Animation for Beginners

Animation for Beginners: All You Need To Know About Animation

Do you want to learn more about animating, but don’t know where to start? Today, we are covering all you need to know about animation for beginners.

 What is Animation?

When you think of animation, big-name studios such as Pixar, Disney, and DreamWorks probably come to mind, but this type of art can be found anywhere, including marketing. Animation is the art of bringing life into inanimate objects, drawings, or characters. With animation, you are taking still images and manipulating them with time, movement, and body language in order to tell or enhance a story.

 What Animators Do

 An animator is tasked with the job of turning a script into a moving story by bringing characters to life. Animators generally fall into two main categories: 

  1. 2D Animators:  The use of hand-drawn techniques.
  2. 3D Animators: The use of 3D software.


Both 2D and 3D animators implement the same principles, but use different tools to create the final product. 

The 12 Principles of Animation

 The 12 principles of animation were developed by Walt Disney Studios in the 1930s as they were transitioning from creating shorts to feature films. Even though they were created by 2D animators, they still apply to 3D artists today.


  1. Squash and Stretch – How an object changes in response to the forces acting on it.
  2. Anticipation – A smaller movement that comes before a major one.
  3. Staging – Making the shot look as clear as possible.
  4. Straight Ahead vs. Pose-to-Pose – Straight ahead refers to creating each frame in sequence from beginning to end. Pose-to-pose means designing the poses for each action first.
  5.   Follow Through and Overlapping Action – Different aspects of the scene moving at different speeds.
  6. 6. Slow in and Slow Out – The tendency of objects to accelerate or decelerate when changing position.
  7. Arcs – Using curved motions to create more realism.
  8. Secondary Action – Smaller movements that support the primary action of a character.
  9. Timing – Determining the number of frames an action will take.
  10. Exaggeration – Representing aspects in a heightened or extreme way to add depth to the animation.
  11. Solid Drawing – Using volume, weight, and balance when posing characters.
  12. Appeal – Adding components that will make characters more compelling to watch.

 It is important to become familiar with each of these principles as you begin your animation journey.

 Types of Animation

 There are many different types of animation, some of which you are probably already familiar with. The most common types of animation you will come across are:                              

  • 3D
  • Hand Drawn (2D)
  • Vector
  • Stop Motion
  • Motion Graphics 

Animation Software for Beginners

 To begin animating, you will need a drawing tablet and a good computer. There are various programs that you can download to start strengthening your animation skills.

If you are looking for the best way to learn animation for beginners, 2D programs are a great place to start. Most of these programs are inexpensive and easy to learn: 

  • Animate CC
  • Toon Boom Harmony
  • TV Paint
  • Character Animator
  • After Effects

 Once you feel comfortable with 2D animation, you might want to start exploring the 3D world. Here are three great programs that our experts recommend for beginners: 

  • Autodesk Maya
  • Blender
  • Cinema 4D

Animation by REVITY Marketing Agency

 Now that you know the steps to dive into animation for beginners, you might want to apply these skills to your business. Our Hollywood-experienced animator at REVITY is here to help you bring the world of animation into your work. We are on the cutting edge of video, animation, and whiteboard effects. 

Contact us to see how we can elevate your marketing strategies today.

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Jarrett Webster

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