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An Animators Guide to Creating a 3D Animatic

ben marvazi 2020

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"The power of 3D animatics lies in their ability to bridge the gap between imagination and reality, giving us a glimpse into the future."

Steven Spielberg

Whether you're a budding animator just starting to sketch your journey, or a seasoned animation studio owner looking for new creative horizons, there's an exhilarating world awaiting you - the world of 3D animatics! This unique domain is where artistry and technology converge, leading to the creation of captivating animated stories.

This guide is specifically designed to help you navigate through the fascinating waters of 3D animatics. So, gear up and get ready to delve into an exciting journey through the realm of 3D animatics. Let's ignite your creativity and passion for animation like never before!

Cover GIF by jojokidsbengali via Tenor

Why You Should Embrace the Power of 3D Animatics

a 3d animatic of a girl character walking up to the camera with her  hands on her hips and leaning forward to listen

GIF by suzynha via GIPHY

Every ambitious animator needs a secret weapon in their arsenal, and understanding the concept of 3D animatics can be just that. Acting as the comprehensive blueprint of your final animation, 3D animatics allows you to visualize your creative ideas before they are fully rendered. 

It's like having a well-planned rehearsal before the grand performance, giving you ample opportunities to tweak, adjust, and perfect your animation in a way that truly captures and captivates your audience. With the rise of 3D animation in various fields, ranging from entertainment to advertising, there's never been a better time to master this essential skill.

The Initial Steps: Setting Sail in the Sea of 3D Animatics

a model of a beach with coins flipping out the ocean near a beach house with palm trees on the sand

GiF by Millions via GIPHY

Creating 3D animatics might seem like a daunting task, especially if you're still in animation school or are juggling animation with a day job. But fear not! Here's a handy guide to help you navigate through these initial challenges and kickstart your 3D animatics journey with confidence and optimism:

Equip Yourself with the Right Tools

Adobe Premiere logo spinning and fading

GIF by erjmkr via Tenor

Creating high-quality 3D animatics demands the right set of tools. The first step in this direction is to invest in a good computer with a robust graphics card that can handle the intensive processing needs of 3D animation. 

You would also need professional-grade animation software. Some popular options include Autodesk Maya, 3D Studio Max, and Blender. This software comes with a wide array of features that can help you create stunning 3D animatics. Remember, a craftsman is only as good as his tools!

Master the Principles of Animation

movement of animated red ball along curves at different speeds

GIF by Wink Animation Studio via GIPHY

Having a solid foundation is critical in any field, and animation is no different. Before venturing into the world of 3D animatics, ensure that you have a thorough understanding of the 12 basic principles of animation. 

These principles, which include concepts like squash and stretch, anticipation, and staging, to name a few, can breathe life into your characters and make your 3D animatics more engaging and relatable.

Craft a Riveting Story

a 3d animatic of a girl walking along a dotted line on a map of an island

GIF by caril via GIPHY

One of the core aspects of any animation is storytelling. Your 3D animatics should serve a compelling narrative that captures your viewer's attention from start to finish. It should have a clear beginning, middle, and end, taking your audience on a captivating journey through the world you've created.

Unleashing Your Creativity: The Journey to Crafting Impressive 3D Animatics

Once you've got a grip on the basics, it's time to let your creativity shine and create your very own 3D animatics. But remember, Rome wasn't built in a day. Practice makes perfect, and it's perfectly okay to stumble and make mistakes along the way. The key is to learn from these experiences and constantly strive to improve.

Explore Different Styles

a 3d human face wearing sunglasses that have squares of many different colors changing frequently


Don't box yourself into a corner. Use your 3D animatics as a canvas to explore a plethora of styles and techniques. Experiment with various aesthetic and narrative approaches, even those that seem unconventional. This can open up new creative avenues and make your 3D animatics stand out from the crowd.

Collaborate and Learn

four different sized hands come together on top of each other

All In Animation GIF By CONNECTED via GIPHY

Join online communities and network with other animators. This can be a great source of learning and inspiration. Share your 3D animatics, gather feedback, and learn from the constructive criticism of others. Animation is a constantly evolving field, and engaging with a community of like-minded individuals can expose you to new ideas and techniques.

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The Benefits Of Using 3d Animatics In Animation Or Film Production

Visualize the Final Product

a black bird with long feathers on his head lands on top of an building with many other buildings in the background

GIF by alecjerome via GIPHY

3D animatics enable the animators and directors to visualize the final product before investing time and resources into full-scale production. This allows for better planning and coordination among the various teams involved in the project.

Facilitate Changes and Revisions

With the help of 3D animatics, it is easier to make changes and revisions in the storyline, character design, camera angles, and more. It's far simpler and more cost-effective to adjust these elements in the pre-visualization stage than it is once production is in full swing.

Save Time and Money

coins and money notes coming out of a wallet smf filling up a purple piggy bank with big eyes

GIF by Millions via GIPHY

By detecting and addressing issues during the animatics stage, companies can save significant time and money that might otherwise be wasted on rework during the expensive full-production phase.

Improve Communication

3D animatics serve as a common ground for all team members - be it the director, animator, editor, or sound designer. It helps convey the vision of the project more effectively, ensuring everyone is on the same page about the project's direction.

Enhance Storytelling

a 3d book with a purple cover opens up and flips through the pages and 3 coins appear on the first page and the cover

GIF by Millions via GIPHY

3D animatics is a powerful storytelling tool. They provide an opportunity to explore different narrative ideas, experiment with pacing, and improve the timing of key actions or dialogues. By pre-visualizing the storyline, animators can ensure a better narrative flow and a more engaging viewer experience.

Overcoming Hurdles with the Animation Business Accelerator

Screen shot from the Business of Animation website of Ben Marvazi presenting the Animation Accelerator Program

Image by Business Of Animation

Feeling overwhelmed or stuck is not uncommon, especially when you're trying to master something as intricate as creating a 3D animatic. Perhaps you're eager but lack the necessary skills or resources. That's where our Animation Business Accelerator program comes into play!

Our comprehensive program equips you with on-demand video lessons that are easy to understand and put into action right away. These lessons make the process of learning how to create 3D animatics not only easy but also enjoyable. You can tap into our live mentorship calls for direct guidance from Ben Marvazi, a successful 7-figure animation business owner.

The Exciting World of 3D Animatics Awaits You!

a green sloth dancing and swinging its arms around

GIF by Mr. Kat & Friends via GIPHY

Remember, creating a compelling 3D animatic is not just about mastering the right tools or techniques. It's about telling a story that resonates with your audience. It's about expressing your unique creativity. So, take the leap, explore the world of 3D animatics, and watch your animation career take off!

Don't forget to check out our blog on “How to Start an Animation Studio” to deepen your understanding of the animation business. It's time to make your mark in the exciting world of animation. Let the Animation Business Accelerator be your guide. Join us, and let's create magic together! 

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