Animation Art Styles – From Simple To Spectacular

There are loads of animation art styles out there. From simple 2D graphics to more complex Isometric animations, there are a lot to choose from. How do you determine which animation art style is best for your next video project? To help, we’ll explain a bit about the most common styles and how they tend to be used.

We believe that each campaign and objective is unique. So, when trying to choose the best animation art style for your next project, we’d suggest you begin at the end! Think about your objective, your audience and your success measures for the video. Then consider your budget and timescales for delivery. Once you have all of this information, it’ll be much easier to decide on the best look for your campaign.

2D Animated Hand

Emile Cohl created the first 2D animation, known as “Fantasmagorie” in 1908. Combining thousands of black and white drawings of a stick figure, Cohl brought his animation to life. Walt Disney achieved greater fame by producing a plethora of memorable animated films. Many of these are still highly regarded and widely enjoyed today! 

2D animation remains a popular animation art style for TV ads, movies, cartoons, games and marketing promotions. It is an affordable and simple style that is easier than ever to produce, thanks to advances in computer animation technology. Computers have simplified the process of creating 2D animation, subsequently improving the end product too. 

View some of our 2D animation projects to see this animation art style in action!

3D animation has come a long way over the years. Showing objects in a three-dimensional space means that they look realistic and can be manipulated to do pretty much anything! 3D animation in particular has become extremely popular in the gaming and virtual reality industries. Now that computer generated imagery is more accessible than ever, animation companies can use 3D to achieve incredible visual works of art. These are effective for conveying important messages or simply for pure entertainment value.

In the video animation world, advancements in technology and techniques mean better quality productions than ever, at an affordable price. 3D animation is particularly popular for conceptual videos, explainer videos and videos about innovation. It can have a very futuristic feel and is ideal for showcasing ideas or concepts that may not actually exist in real life. Although it’s a bit pricier to produce than 2D animation, 3D is still competitively priced and the end result is always worth the investment.

Take a look at some of our 3D animation projects.

Isometric Animation

An Isometric animation uses isometric projection to present a 3D object within a 2D space. It’s one of the best animation art styles for conceptual or futuristic videos. Showing seamlessly flowing visuals, an Isometric animation has an out-of-this-world quality to it, with many visual layers for viewers to enjoy.

It imposes 3D shapes and characters, overlaid onto a flat, 2D background to make them seemingly appear out of the screen! All shapes are shown at 30 degree angles, so proportions stay steady and the video flows smoothly from start to finish. This is definitely one of our favourite animation art styles!

Check out this Isometric animation we created for Akixi.

Motion Graphics Examples

So, what are motion graphics? It’s a bit like animated graphic design. The animation element is present but there’s a lot more focus on text than on the animation itself. The motion element is usually quite simple, so it has a wholly unique feel that’s different to traditional animation art styles.

Combined with music and powerful text, motion graphics are ideal for communicating an important piece of information. They’re far more interesting than showing static text on screen and add gravitas to any topic. For this reason, motion graphics are a popular animation art style for charity animations, healthcare animations and awareness campaigns.

These are just a few examples of common animation styles. If you’d like to learn more about using animation to achieve your business goals, do get in touch! We’d love to hear about any upcoming projects or challenges you’re working on and find out how we can help.