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Animator

An Animator produces multiple images called frames, and when sequenced together, rapidly creates an illusion of movement known as animation.

Images can be made up of digital or traditionally drawn pictures, models or puppets.

Animators usually work in 2D animation, 3D model-making animation, stop frame or computer-generated animation. Computer-generated animation is used for motion pictures (to create special effects or an animated film in its own right), as well as in aspects of television work, digital and the computer games industry.

An animator produces multiple images called frames, which when sequenced together create an illusion of movement - this is known as animation. The images can be made up of digital or hand-drawn pictures, models or puppets. Animators tend to work in 2D, 3D model-making, stop-frame or computer-generated animation.

Animators create special effects and other animations for everything from advertisements to video games. Some animators choose to develop a speciality, such as hand-drawing, designing 3D characters or creating computer-generated images (CGI). Animators can also be involved in the big-picture development of their projects. In a video game or movie, this could include storyboarding to create a plot and develop characters. For an advertising campaign, it might mean acting as a project manager to keep everything on schedule and within budget.

This focus on teamwork is common in the animation industry. Self-employed animators must regularly check in with their clients to make sure everyone is on the same page about the project’s progress. Those working for an organization will often work closely with project managers, marketers and other animators who have different speciality areas. Each of these roles plays a key part in bringing animations to life.

Animation and technology go hand in hand, so you’re probably not too surprised to hear that technical skills are required to be a success in this career. But it takes more than just tech know-how to make it in this design field!

In addition to knowing the technical side, you need a strong creative process and closely studying the details of the world around you are two skills that will serve you well in animation design.

Skills that employers are looking for:

Technical skills:

  • Adobe Creative Suite

  • Graphic design

  • Motion graphics

  • Interaction design

  • Maya

  • UX wireframes

  • Prototyping

  • User interface (UI) design

  • Cinema 4D

  • 3D modelling