Animated about animation

Julian Luxford

Motion Graphic Designer

The definition of animation is “a dynamic medium in which images or objects are manipulated to appear as moving images”. And sometimes I see work that matches exactly that sentiment. And that drives me mad. A great animator does so much more than “make an image or object move”. A great animator uses their skill to take a story and enrich it. If animating something doesn’t improve it then why bother?

At the end of the day, I see the role of animation in exactly the same way a copywriter or graphic designer would see their tools – as a means by which they can create a story that is meaningful, impactful and resonates with the audience. That’s why I start every project with one thing in mind – the audience. If the audience is forgotten, then you are designing for yourself. The world is full of so many examples of designers creating something for their own ego. And what does that result in? Aesthetics over results.

The great thing about animation is there are so many elements at the disposal of the animator; movement, illustration, photography, voice-overs, sound effects, music and many more.

And the worst thing about animation is there are so many elements at the disposal of the animator; movement, copy, illustration, photography, voice-overs, sound effects, music and many more.

So I try to ensure I only use what is needed; never overcomplicating the animation. I try and adhere to the oldest mantra in design – keep it simple. Because simplicity means focus. And focus means coherent communications are created. I have a simple process that analyses each of the following:

Who is the message aimed at?

What is the message that needs to be conveyed?

What impact does the message need to create?

Then, and only then, do I start to even think about the various animator’s tools at my disposal. Thinking first, creating second. It’s a mantra I’ve had all my career and it serves me well. But I know that seeing is believing so I’ll leave you with this, a taste of what we do here at Ashfield Digital & Creative.

If you’d like us to get animated about your creation, then we'd love to hear from you.

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