An Animation Specialist is sometimes called a Motion Graphics Designer. Sometimes an Animation Specialist is called a Video and Motion Graphics Artist, and it’s true that both roles are very similar. Generally, an Animation Specialist can also just be called the shorter title of Animator. However, all of these roles encompass one specific task: creating a graphic or a 3D model and making it move (there are also 3D Animators too — confused yet?).
What Does an Animator Do?
An Animator’s work can be found on screens all over the world: videos, movies, games, commercials, websites, and a whole lot more. Animators must love design and art and have an interest in film, whether it’s on TV, a website, or the big screen. They must also have an ounce or two of technologist; today, many Animators work with computer software to get the job done.
An Animator may work for a film production house or an ad agency. They may work for a computer gaming company or an animation studio like Pixar.
Their tasks could include:
- Building clay models
- Taking photos of the models
- Drawing a series of meticulous images
- Using software to animate drawings
- Develop and format
- Presenting their ideas on a storyboard or other mock-up
- Editing film
- Collaborating with a team of creative professionals
An Animator works across a wide array of mediums, including handheld digital devices such as smartphones, as well as television and the movies.
Skills Animators Need
An Animator works with creative teams or clients to develop their graphics and the animation that makes those graphics seem more real. They are highly skilled as artists but also great with software. They may work in video editing and must always have skill in 3D animation.
Here are some of the other skills an Animation Specialist must have:
- Artistic and creative with an eye for color and detail
- Expansive imagination
- Good vision and nimble fingers
- Great storytellers
- Drawing, painting, and sculpting skills
- Know and understand a variety of software
- Are very patient and able to sit in one place for long periods of time
- Have good hand/eye coordination and a meticulous attention to detail
- Be passionate about the character on the screen
- Be a self-starter and able to work independently while staying motivated
- Must be able to collaborate with a team and communicate clearly and precisely
- Able to handle the pressure of deadlines
- Able to handle criticism
- Good at photography
Animators are artists but there is no Jackson Pollock in their approach. They may spend hours mapping out the movement of a particular graphic, but the reward is the finished product that could make it into an award-winning movie or a best-selling video game. Their work could become some of our most famous cultural icons, sell products, or elicit emotion from millions. No matter where their final deliverable ends up, Animators play an important role in creating art that engages and entertains.
Suggested Software Proficiency
Animators use a variety of 2D and 3D animation technology, including stop-motion animation and computer generation animation tools, while 2D animation consists mainly of drawing an image on paper with subtle variations on each page. The images are then traced onto film. When the images are put together, the graphic appears to move. This is the same technique Walt Disney used to bring Mickey Mouse to the big screen. Today, the image can be uploaded to a computer and software can be used to give the graphic color, scenery, music, motion, and life.
Stop motion animation typically uses puppets, clay or other 3D models. Each frame is photographed, the model moved slightly, and the picture is taken again. Then the images are run together, making them look like they’re moving.
There’s also 3D CG animation that uses software to create the animation we see in video games and movies.
Some of the computer software most frequently used in this profession includes:
- Adobe After Effects
- Final Cut Pro
Like many professions, an Animator picks and chooses the methods they use to wield their creative tasks. Some Animators prefer using one or two favorite programs to perfect their final product.
Find Your Animator Here
Finding an Animator may be difficult, but Artisan Talent has already done the work of screening the best ones and they’re waiting for you. All you have to do is make the call. We’ve built our portfolio by matching the needs of our clients with the right creative talent to fit your goals. Artisan Talent can help you find the perfect match to fit your team. (click here to find talent).
Find Your Animator Job Here
For Animators looking for their next gig, Artisan Talent has a list of companies just waiting to put you to work. Call on us to talk with a talent counselor about your skills. You can also view our creative employment agency’s list of available opportunities or submit your resume (click here to find a job).