What is 3d animation?

The definition of 3D animation comes to be a computerized process used by animators to give the feeling of movement through the creation of sequences of 3d still images. You have heard about it, have you? Let’s go back to the beginning. Animation has its origin in the Latin “Anima” and whose meaning is “Soul”. Therefore animating means giving soul to a character or an object so that it seems to come to life, think and act for itself.

However, technically 3d animation is done using programs or applications that simulate three-dimensional visualization. All this through calculations based on the projection of geometry and three-dimensional spaces on two-dimensional screens. These applications allow the creation and manipulation of polygonal meshes that are then converted into the frames that make up any sequence in 3d animation movies.

Remember, if you like this article and want to learn more about 3D Animation, develop yourself professionally, or simply stay up to date, on our website you will find an endless collection of articles, news, events related to animation. Animaster College of Animation and Design is among the top animation colleges in Bangalore providing quality education in the field of animation and other design fields.

What is 3d animation for?

3d animation has brought us thousands of uses from the medical field to entertainment. This technique is mainly used to make movies and series, video games, advertising, VFX, virtual and augmented reality, video-mapping, apps, and even scientific simulation. Your goal may well be a new way of telling a story or creating images that would otherwise be impossible. As we have listed the top animation colleges in Bangalore, we have always tried to provide articles that can help applicants to understand what a particular subject is about. In this article, we are going to focus on its application to the world of cinema and entertainment.

Techniques and Types of 3D Animation

There are countless animation styles, as many as 3d artists in the world. Since art is, ultimately, interpretation, each studio and each animator can set a series of rules and choose the most appropriate techniques to define a type of animation.

This decision may have its origin for artistic or budgetary reasons. However, broadly speaking, there are 3 main types of 3d animation; Realistic, Cartoon and Snappy and the most common is to find hybrids that define the personality or style of each studio or in each movie. Here we explain to them all and with examples.

Realistic 3d animation


Widely used for live-action film sequences that for technical reasons require the integration of 3d characters. Realistic animation can be created by hand (manual) but given the complexity of perfectly emulating the movements of a living being (Human or Animal), the most common way to create realistic 3d animations is to use the current motion capture systems (Motion capture). This technique is also widely used in the creation of Cinematics for Video Games.

3d animation cartoon

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In the same way that it happens in traditional 2D animation, the 3D animation in Cartoon style comes to be a very attractive simplification of reality. And it is usually defined by a set of rules that give it credibility. The principles of animation are followed in every step. The use to a greater or lesser extent of each of these principles usually marks the style of animation. And in most cases, the seal of the responsible studio.

In this case, the technique is completely manual, that is, the animation is created by animators. You will find a good example in movies like Angry Birds and Ugly Dolls.

Snappy 3d animation

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The Snappy-style 3D Animation is actually an exaggerated and simplified version of Cartoon Animation. The use of principles as an animation style taken to the extreme, with very marked timings and spacing. And a much more pronounced use of stretching, crushing, and exaggeration. You will find a good example of Snappy animation in the reel of the animator Jorge Viagra, used in large productions. I also include the famous animated short The food thief.

The origin of 3D animation

In 1972 young Edwin Catmull (Ed Catmull) and Fred Parke created the first 3D Animation. 3d Animation came at a time when traditional animators were witnessing the end of a great era. Increasingly, the general public began to value a tool on which no one would think that an empire could be built.

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3D Animation Programs

Currently, there is a multitude of 3d animation programs, which take more or less prominence, depending on the standards set by the animation industry. Although they are built to create almost any animation, each software is usually very classified for what type of production (characters, 3dfx situations, motion graphics) or the industry (Cinema, video games, virtual reality, etc.).

Some of the most used programs for the production of 3D Animation (updated to 2020). Autodesk Maya, Autodesk 3D Studio Max, Blender, Cinema 4D, MotionBuilder, Modo, Houdini, and Marvelous Designer.

If you want to know more about the origin of the following article, we will tell you everything about The History of 3D Animation.

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