Top trends in motion animation in 2018... so far

Motion graphics and animation are powerful. And thanks to smart phones, apps and social media, we’re never far away from them. Their ability to convey fun, playful messages makes them a modern stalwart when trying to engage and captivate audiences. I would even argue they offer the best way of creating impactful storytelling.

As a creative studio specialising in motion graphics and animation, we enjoy keeping on top of the shifting trends and styles being used well in the industry.

From the simple to the complex, here are six of the current and upcoming motion graphics and animation trends we’ve seen appearing most in 2018 so far…

Seamless Transitions

It’s an art to seamlessly move the viewer from one scene to the next. It’s one that isn’t exactly new, but is massively skillful.

The Confidante by Not To Scale is a prime example of how continuously smooth and slick movement of backgrounds, characters and elements can help create fluidity throughout an animation.

Click here to watch “The Confidante” by Not To Scale

Another example by Not To Scale for Amex Platinum demonstrates how seamless transitions can be achieved through attention to detail and a lot of invested time. These ‘liquid motion’ transitions can be complex in practice, but the result is undeniably clever, elegant and downright gorgeous.

Click here to watch “Amex Platinum” by Not To Scale

Bright, Bold, and Restricted

People react to colour. Simple. It’s an essential part of all design to help determine mood and create emotion to tailor pieces towards different audiences.

We’ve witnessed the use of bright and bold colours being used within a restricted colour palette to really lift artwork. Using contrasting colours gives designs an eye catching, distinctive style. It’s significant and extremely popular given the growing need for brands to stand out.

Click here to watch “The Postcard” by Device

Noise And Texture

Adding noise and texture in artwork can really help add depth and detail to flat vector based design. It’s definitely a trend that’s increasing in popularity, giving animations a more organic, stylised look that feels more analog and hand crafted. We like it. A lot.

Click here to watch Time2Match by OURSHACK

Retro Vibes

Introducing a look and feel from the past can be fun as well as helping to drive audience connection. Vibrant colours, gradients and bright retro vibes have all made a comeback and looking at recent design outputs, they certainly seem to be sticking around.

Nostalgia is an extremely powerful emotion to tap into to create a sense of relatability for the desired audience. Whether that’s technology, music, gaming or even fashion, it transcends industries seamlessly and looks amazing when it’s done well.

Click here to watch Parklife 2017 by Studio Moross

3D Craft – Mixing 2D and 3D

Traditionally, 3D Craft was related to as ‘stop motion’ animation techniques. Today, we’re seeing designers incorporating it when they’re looking to add a bespoke feel and therefore personality to a brand. It’s a really effective way of creating a strong, stand out identity that doesn’t blur the lines and is unapologetically unique.

Molton Brown’s ‘A Show Of Stars’ advert gives stop motion a modern twist. Intricately detailed sculptures and environments, created by paper artist Helen Musslewhite, are modelled, lit and animated in 3D software.

This allows these complex designs to flow and move effortlessly – something that would otherwise be a massive effort to execute using traditional stop motion techniques.

Click here to watch Molton Brown – “A Show Of Stars” by Connected Pictures

Treatment To Frames

In 2018, everything needs to stand out if it’s going to be noticed. As a result, studios are going above and beyond to push for something different. Specifically, we’ve seen a lot of stunning work which has created impact by adding a physical treatment to animated frames.

In the Fifa World Cup 2018 launch trailer, each frame was embroidered with more than 227,000 metres of thread, across 600 unique frames of tapestry. The piece blends the old and the new as it brings to life some of The World Cup’s most memorable moments with a bespoke interpretation of a centuries-old Russian tradition.

It’s mesmerising to see and has certainly pushed the standards, so we’re eagerly watching this space to see what inspired work emerges in its aftermath.

Click here to watch Fifa World Cup 2018 Launch Trailer by BBC Sport

To Wrap Up

With bright washes of colour and emotive use of design being hot, we’re really enjoying experimenting with these six motion and animation trends, as well as many others. Will it continue throughout 2018 and beyond? We reckon so, but will be eagerly awaiting more new trends in this speedily changing landscape, too.

To see how we could help bring your brand to life with motion animation, drop us a line.

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