Strategies to Keep Animation Costs Down


Animation is expensive to create! However, here are some tips to keep costs down as low as possible without sacrificing the story or the storyline. Of course, keep in mind that what makes some animation sequences so amazing may also need to be sacrificed in order to save money.

All examples courtesy of Fauquier ENT.

1. Leave the background plain and featureless. Creating a 3D background can add a lot to the cost of the animation. Here is a video showing a person walking in a featureless background room.

2. If you have a person in the animation, keep this individual as a featureless blue mannequin. Creating a realistic person with expressions and natural movements adds a lot to the cost of the animation. Here's a video showing a plain blue mannequin.

3. Stick with 2D instead of 3D if possible. Of course, it does create a more cartoonish feel, but it is quite a bit cheaper to make.

4. Use live video that you can capture with a camcorder whenever possible and supplement with 3D animation where necessary. That way you end up paying only for the animation and not the entire video. In this example, animation was used only to illustrate what is happening in the inner ear.

Rather than side-by-side, here is another example in which animation is overlaid on top of a recorded ultrasound imaging.

5. Use still images rather than animation whenever possible. Creating motion is expensive! In this example (starting at 31 seconds), still images of bone being removed is used rather than showing an animation of the bone actually being drilled away.

Using a variety of cost-saving strategies, an animation project which may at first seem very expensive to begin with, can be made more affordable.

Good luck with your project!

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