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Classes/tutorials/resources for making animated explainer videos?

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Neil Orman
Classes/tutorials/resources for making animated explainer videos?
on Jan 31, 2017 at 9:03:16 pm

I'm a video producer and have a decent knowledge of After Effects, which I use to create basic motion graphics, titles, and animated maps mainly (I work at a think tank that covers foreign policy). But the idea of creating an animated explainer video, using my usual AE approach, would be too time-consuming for most projects. Does anyone have any quick guidance on tools/templates or courses out there to help someone more quickly create animated explainer videos?
Thanks, Neil


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Mark Suszko
Re: Classes/tutorials/resources for making animated explainer videos?
on Feb 2, 2017 at 5:14:59 pm

Hm, I'm sensing a potential market niche! ☺

If you like those whiteboard type drawn animations, (personally I think they've had their fifteen minutes), scribol or video scribe offers a templated way to generate those quickly. http://www.videoscribe.co/

Motion VFX offers kits of pre-animated elements you can mix and match in Motion of AfterEffects, covering a lot of generic PSA and general business type of concepts. https://www.motionvfx.com/mplugs-81.html

You can learn a lot by watching the best entries on the page for the Kinetic Typography Channel on Vimeo. https://vimeo.com/channels/kinetictypography

As far as a general class in how to make them, I'm unaware of one, but might be interested in taking one online.


I don't personally think of these mograph /kinetic type projects any differently than I would live-action commercial-making. You're solving similar problems using similar techniques for the most part, though with the emphasis on artful design. You might have more abstract concepts to try to illustrate thru motion and action. Point being, don't let the acquisition of a new gimmick like animated puppeteering tools drive your choice of how to communicate the message. You still have to strategize and all that, just like any normal business video, THEN figure out the creative treatment that gets the message tot he target market best. The reason people got burned out so fast on whiteboard animation was that people were using it too much and on everything and for the wrong reasons and doing a lot of it badly. They bought a new hammer and suddenly everything around was a nail.


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Neil Orman
Re: Classes/tutorials/resources for making animated explainer videos?
on Feb 24, 2017 at 3:32:53 am

Thank you so much Mark! And I apologize for the slow reply - it's been a hectic time. These resources are very helpful, particularly those kinetic typography examples like you said. I was originally asking for my current employer, a foreign policy think tank. Also, since my original post I got a job with a science-related employer for which these kinds of approaches may be even more applicable. But I totally agree with your point about not letting the medium drive your message. Anyway, very helpful as always, thank you again!!!


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Mark Suszko
Re: Classes/tutorials/resources for making animated explainer videos?
on Feb 24, 2017 at 4:09:14 am

You're very welcome. And if the science-related show ever needs a scriptwriter for "explainer" videos, I did that for three years for NASA and the National Institute of Aerospace. Check out their old podcasts of "Innovation NOW!" Perfect kind of stuff to go along with kinetic typography.


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