How do we make an animation?

Animations come in all shapes and sizes. No two projects or clients are the same. But we do have a general process that takes your brief right through to animation. If this is a new adventure for you, or you’re just nosey about how we do things, here’s an overview of how we get ideas moving.

We create a timeline, tailored to your brief, so you know how the project is progressing and what it looks like each step of the way. Our (ahem) incredible producer will walk you through every stage of our tried-and-test process.

1. Brief & creative development 

We ask a lot of questions. Promise we’re not being a deliberate pest. It’s all about getting a complete understanding of your project. So we can make sure we’re producing a film that fits your purpose, audience, brand, budget and timeline.

Once we’re living and breathing your brief and brand, we’ll craft a creative approach or two just for your project. Then when you’re happy, we get sign off on style and budget, before it’s full steam ahead.

2. Scripting & Style frames

Whether it’s a voiceover or text on-screen, we always start with a script. We’ll work with you to create a winning narrative for your film, based on the brief, your brand’s tone of voice and any existing content you might already have.

Meanwhile, our design team will carefully create style frames to show you how we imagine the final animation. They might include illustrations of the characters or scenes. Whatever is relevant to your project. This gives you a chance to review the design style before storyboarding.

3. Storyboarding

Next, we design and illustrate the visuals and explain how they’ll complement the script. From this, you can see how the whole animation will look before we start making it move. We write a short description for each frame that explains how it will move, alongside the relevant line of the script.

Depending on the project, we might create a sketch storyboard first. These line drawings show the type of shots and our initial ideas before we get down to fully designing each frame.

After we’ve started animating, it gets trickier to make changes to the designs. We hope it’s love at first sight. But to be on the safe side, we suggest everyone who needs to approve the film takes a peek at this. That way, we can change any background colours, or a character’s outfit or anything else that’s not setting your heart on fire.

4. Voiceover & Music

While we’re storyboarding, we’ll also find a range of marvellous voices and music tracks to suit your film’s mood. You may have a clear idea of the sound of the film. Or even have a voiceover artist in mind. Either way, we’ll be on hand to find the right solution for you.

When you’ve chosen a voice, we’ll record the script so that we can time the animation to it perfectly.

5. Animation & Sound Design

This is where the magic happens. It’s time to get those designs moving. All the stages were preparing us for this. Now we can focus all our attention on creating an animation full of wonder, down to the tiniest detail.

Following review, we concentrate on crafting sound effects. Through sound design, we set the tone of the animation by increasing personality and energy.

6. Delivery

There’s another chance for amends, then we give your animation a final polish and voila! Its time to let it out into the world for all (or at least your audience) to see.

We deliver final version, ready for wherever the film is being played (we already know this because of all those questions we asked at the start). If it’s going online, we might create some short cutdowns for you to sprinkle across social media. If it’s for a super-massive screen, we might also give you a super-massive version that will look tip-top.

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Phew! That’s a wrap. We can all feel proud of your marvellous new films.

If you have a question about how animations are made or want to find out more, then get in touch.

Producer and plate-spinner in chief, Amy makes sure that each project runs without a hitch. She loves getting to the bottom of a problem so everyone can make great work that they can be proud of (you included).