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10 Types of Animations [With inspiring examples]

 

Animation has come a long way since its inception. It has enabled users to tell stories in the most intriguing and meaningful way possible. 

From helping the audience experience fantasy stories to inspiring them in a thought-provoking manner, animated videos is one of the best ways to captivate an audience, irrespective of their ages. This fact shatters the common misconception that animated videos are only meant for children!

Though it is a compelling video style, understanding the different kinds of animation and how they work can be quite overwhelming. Because Animation, as a whole, is a vast topic that involves zillions of intrinsic techniques.

 

But don’t worry. We will be taking you through everything you need to know about animation!

So, let’s start with the basics - 

What is Animation?

Animation is a method of manipulating static images and making them appear as moving images to create an illusion of motion. The illusion is created by the repetitive motion of static images at different frame rates. 

Here’s an example of an animated video:

 

History of animation: 

Initially, traditional animations started out as hand drawings. But now, almost everything is digital.

If we turn back, animation was first used way back in the early 1900s. The first ever animation movie, Fantasmagorie, was created on August 17th, 1908. 

 

Emile Cohl made this movie. The creation took around five months and involved 700 drawings, resulting in a 1 Minute and 20 Seconds film. This was done using an illuminated glass plate to trace each frame and create a consistent animation. 

This revolutionary idea completely changed the world of movie-making!!

Now that we have gone through the basics let’s dive into the different types of animation next!

Now in the modern-day era, the use of animations is massive!

Animations are being used everywhere, from media to marketing campaigns, and the best part is it has become super accessible. 

With the advent of Online animated video makers like Animaker, you can make beautiful animations right from the comfort of your computer.

Without further ado, let's now look at the different types of animations you came here to learn about.

Here are some of the most common types of Animations:

  1. 3D Animation
  2. 2D Animation
  3. Whiteboard Animation
  4. Typography Animation
  5. Claymation
  6. Stop Motion Animation
  7. Traditional Cel Animation
  8. Rotoscope Animation
  9. Flipbook Animation
  10. Puppetry Animation

Let's take a dive deeper into each of those types now.

  1. 3D Animation

    3D Animation brings digital objects to life, creating the illusion that they are moving in three-dimensional space. Despite being displayed on a 2D screen, these animations mimic the principles of 3-Dimension in the real world. These types of animations are now widely used for all scenarios.Be it movies or advertisements, you can see them everywhere.Here’s an example of 3D Animation -

     

  2.  2D Animation

    Two-dimensional or 2D animation involves creating movements using static images in two dimensions. Moving images rapidly in a sequence creates an illusion of movement - like a film. Just like 3D animation, 2D animation is widely used in movies, advertisements, promotions, and more.Here’s an example of 2D Animation -

     

  3. Whiteboard Animation

    Whiteboard Animation is an animation type where an artist draws a scene on a whiteboard and records it as an illustrative story. Whiteboard animation is a unique video animation technique that takes the audience into an immersive experience, as each frame is constructed right in front of the user.In addition, these kinds of animations usually have a narration accompanied while the story told is being drawn. Whiteboard animations are widely used in explainer videos as this technique helps demonstrate ideas in an easy and effective manner.

    Here’s an example of Whiteboard Animation -

     

    You can choose this animation type if you want to keep the audience’s attention throughout the period.If you want to know how to make a whiteboard video,click here.

  4. Typography Animation  

    Animated Typography or Kinetic Typography is a type of animation that involves moving text with effects like Expanding, Shrinking, or anything else that suits the scene. This kind of animation is often used in movies and other videos as title screens, intro segments, credits segments, etc.Here’s an example of Typography Animation -

     

    This template is fully editable on Animaker. To edit this template in detail:  Click here

  5. Claymation 

    Claymation, or Clay Animation, as the name suggests, is a type of stop motion animation that involves creating a scene in clay. Right from the characters to the scene, everything is made in clay. This type of animation is widely used in classic children's movies as they are appealing and unique. While one of the popular examples is Chicken run, we don’t see this kind of movies these days.Here’s an example of Claymation Animation -

     

  6. Stop Motion Animation

    Stop Motion animation is a technique where the objects used in the scene are physically moved in every frame and photographed. These individual photographs are edited and created into a sequence to create an illusion of movement. This is usually used in cartoons, short films, commercials, and other creative mediums.Here’s an example of a Stop Motion animation -

     

  7. Traditional Cel Animation

    Cel animation is one of the oldest and most traditional forms of animation that involves hand drawing every scene on clear celluloid sheets. The sheets with the painted background are placed one on top of the other. As you might have guessed, the ‘cel’ refers to the celluloid sheets on which the drawing is done. This type of animation was widely used by artists in Walt Disney Studios.Here’s an example of Traditional cel animation - 

     

  8. Rotoscope Animation

    Rotoscope is a type of animation that involves tracing live-action videos and drawing over them to make the animation look realistic. This was usually done by projecting the live-action images on a glass panel, then tracing and customizing the subject according to the scene. The major use case of Rotoscope Animation is in live-action films where the matte or an outline of a character from the film can be extracted from a scene and put to use for another scene with a different background.

    A good example of Rotoscope Animation would be the Star Wars movie.

    Here’s an example of Rotoscope Animation - 

     

    In this video, the end of the sticks (the lightsaber) is edited over to add the neon red saber to bring in the Star Wars theme.

  9. Flipbook Animation

    Flipbook animation is one of the earliest forms of animation that involves a small book with drawings on its pages. The pages represent the frames of the video. When the pages are flipped rapidly, the series of pictures animate and convey the story. Flipbook animations are usually used in offline media such as magazines, children's story books, etc. Here’s an example of Flipbook animation -

     

  10. Puppetry Animation

    Puppetry animation, as the name suggests, uses puppets as the video’s primary subjects instead of any other objects. This is one of the old & traditional forms of entertainment commonly used in children’s cartoons and films.

    Here’s an example of Puppetry Animation - 

     

These are just some of the major types of animation. Many more types can be formed by combining the styles mentioned above.

While most of these animations can be made with the help of professional animation softwares like Adobe Animate, Adobe After Effects, Sony Vegas, etc., a few types like claymation and puppetry animation still require manual efforts. 

And if you are a beginner, getting started with animation, understanding how it works, and executing the overall process can be really overwhelming!

But what if I told you you could create animations like these right from your browser?

Yes, you read it right! With Animaker, you can create stunning animated videos online on the go, right from your browser. This app has a custom character builder where you can create characters with a very easy drag & drop interface. It also comes with tons of expressions, animations, and lots more. 

So, if you are looking for a way to create cool animated videos, check out this video:

 

Or, would you prefer to learn how to animate videos through a step-by-step textual guide instead? Then, check out the link added!

I hope this article helped you to understand animation and its different types. Have a great time creating your own animated video!

Got any questions? Feel free to add them in the comments section below. We will be happy to help!

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