How to Create an Attractive 3D Character Animation Video

Are you in the middle of your quest to create flawless 3D character animation videos? Learn how to create 3D character animations. 



Creating a 3D animation video can be simple, but a lack of knowledge and poor animation software can become a big barrier in your way to producing an attractive animated video. 

To avoid such challenges, you need a proper animation pipeline that will guide you through the way. This guide will provide you all the information you need to create a 3D animation for your business. 

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What is 3D Character Animation?

3D character animation refers to the process of creating three-dimensional versions of 2D characters that are in a state of motion. Such characters are different from the former versions.

Various aspects, like concepts, emotion, feel, and storytelling set a 3D animation video apart from other uses of technology. Some important use cases of this art form are in explainer videos and product/sales videos that are quite common these days. 

T Rex on a Motorcycle 3d animation

3D character designs are interesting since they impart a real-looking feel to animated characters. This is important when the aim is to grab the attention of the audience.

Benefits of 3D Animation Videos

The perks of 3D animation videos have been taking the world by their storm. They have become an undetachable part of marketing and advertising for brands. 
The extent of independence and creativity that 3D animation allows in its videos has no parallel. It is a hot trend now. Since it has progressed so well with the scope of different sectors and industries around us.

polar bear in a row boat 3d animation

3D animations fascinate and astonish audiences. Plus they deliver your brand’s vision and purpose to a much higher level. 

The following are some important benefits of 3D animation:

  • It escalates the quality of videos through animation.
  • The method allows you to reuse 2D concepts in your projects.
  • 3D animation has more attributes than 2D techniques like perspective shifts, particle effects, and simulations with effects such as water or fire, lighting, and texture.
  • The slideshow or sequential animations work wonders when it comes to the marketing and conversion process. 
  • 3D animation allows a higher liberty to do alterations before launching any kind of project. 
  • It helps you save your investment from going into loss and reduces the total time taken to complete such projects too.
  • The technique of 3D animation is much easier to execute. 
  • Animation goes well with product photography and cinematography

How Much Does 3D Animation Cost?

One of the virtues of seasoned animators is that they keep a sharp eye on the variable trends of animation costs around the globe. A 3D animation costs much higher than 2D animated characters or projects.

Variables like project length, production magnitude, nature of the animations, and other technologically advanced features determine the actual price range of 3D animated projects. The average 3D animation price would be $10,000 to $20,000 per minute.

Steps to Create 3D Animated Character Video

  1. Brainstorm a concept
  2. 3D Character modeling
  3. Design texturing
  4. Rigging and skinning
  5. Animation
  6. Light & camera movement
  7. Rendering & Composition
  8. Finalization

Step 1: Brainstorm a Concept

The first step that initializes this whole pipeline is the concept to work on. You can also call it an idea or the inspiration that empowers you to step ahead and proceed to the further steps. 

The best ways to detect the pain points of the audience to get an idea are:

  • See what they are looking for?
  • What are they finding hard to understand?
  • What relates to them more?
  • How can you trigger their minds to a certain call to action? 

After you get an idea to work on, it's time to develop a storyboard out of it. A storyboard has all the sketches of the sequences that your animation video will include. It really helps you to modify your idea to the 3D models and animations later. 

Step 2: 3D Character Modeling

Once your clients approve your storyboard, you need to develop the corresponding models. It can also be called designing your characters. The whole process is 3D modeling. 

You work with a 3D mesh and shape or give structure to the characters from your ideas. You can start with a small detail and then proceed with the bigger details once you are satisfied with the results of the modeling. 

The 3D modeling step needs premium quality 3D modeling software that would make the job easier for you. Due to this reason, the right choice of using an appropriate tool for 3D modeling is crucial to acquire positive results.

Step 3:  Design Texturing 

Design textures are for providing your characters with proper outfits. This step is important to consider right after you develop the models. You pick up 2D characters and then these are layered with the design. Colors and textures are also a part of this step.

Overlapping and mapping enhance the quality of texturing for the characters. Software like Photoshop and Adobe Mixamo are viable to perform 3D rendering on the characters. 

The professionals who are assigned to 3D texturing are experts in writing, painting, and shading texture. All of this happens according to the ideas or the concepts in the first place. 

Step 4:  Rigging and Skinning 

After texturing, rigging and skinning are important for your characters. Your characters would be lifeless without a skeleton. Rigging is the process that does this for you.

Especially for the human characters in your animation videos, a skeleton is necessary to bring out a more realistic look in the characters. 
Skinning combines all the 3D models along with the developed skeleton for each character. The step of skinning has the tendency that influences the 3D models if needed. 

Step 5: Animation

It is the most fun step. Animation can be less time taking but it can be hectic according to the nature of the concepts. This step in particular breathes life into your rigged characters.

Animators have the job to work on a sequential basis. It means they animate the characters depending on the frames of the video that is under development. If you are in a rush, you can accelerate animation with the help of object splines. 

Another way to expedite the process is using animating software that would keep the quality consistent. Plus it will save you time regarding the projects. 

Step 6: Lighting and camera movement

3D character animation videos need a good angle view and professional camera movements. The lighting aspect is important that sets the whole mood of your animation videos. 

Think of it as shooting a live video. So that your animation videos would be having the same feel for the audience. This enhances the chances of audience interaction. You can use different 3D cameras and real cameras for entire animated cinematography for the projects. 

Step 7: Rendering and composition

Rendering means that you are securing all the shots in a single file. So that these shots would be used in a single frame later in the process. The step is intricate. It is because the factors like models, effects, lighting, and material determine the entire quality of the video. 

Whenever you are rendering the frames, it is important to check the cinematography and its placements. It is because faulty camera movement can destroy the whole effort by far. 
Compositing is an editable step. It is the computer-generated version of the rendered sequences. After that, you can add and plan the music design to your videos to develop an extra flair for your projects. 

Step 8: Finalize the design

Once everything is in place, you can wind up the video with the final touchups. You ensure perfection in this last step. You can also use the editors to verify all the changes and gaps that might need reconsideration.

Animated frog doctor

It gives a chance to your clients to scrutinize the projects for the last time. So that they can put forward their opinion to make any further changes that they would like in the animation video projects. 

Add 3D Animation to Enhance Your Brand Materials

Animation videos are fun to produce. There is no denying in the procedural learning fo this technique in case of the beginners. But seasoned animators have been going through the same pipeline for many years.

The process does not confine you to anything. You can go creative according to your projects. The entire effort and outcomes depend on the precision of the execution of each and every step of the pipeline. 

If you are a beginner, you can take inspiration from different forums of animation. Be it a 3D video animation agency that would help you with your queries. BuzzFlick is a stellar brand that has a versatile portfolio of quality production of animation videos and other services. Header over to their website and start exploring!

Need help selecting a company?

Based on your budget, timeline, and specifications we can help you build a shortlist of companies that perfectly matches your project needs. Get started by submitting your project details.

Get Started