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Get Started in Motion Graphic Design!

Get Started in Motion Graphic Design!

Literally “drawing in motion” or “design in motion”, Motion Design is the art of giving life to graphic elements (photos, typography, shapes, …) through movement. Present today in the majority of media, it is used as a vector of communication on television, on the web, and on advertising screens.

Historically, Motion Design comes from the cinema, used very early for the realization of credits. Today, it is solicited in any type of communication, to give life to presentations of companies, products, or concepts, often for the transmission of strong messages, with educational or playful dimensions. In addition to Motion Graphic Design quality, narration and scriptwriting become the essential foundations for the quality of a motion design film. Motion Design is, for now, the highest form of showcasing digital creativity.

Motion Graphic Design

What is Motion Graphic Design?

Exercising the profession of Motion Designer is above all being a good graphic designer with a strong image culture and a good dose of creativity.

Starting from a blank page and responding first to a customer brief, the motion designer will have to script and then produce 2D and 3D Motion Graphic Design elements to then assemble and animate them with video post-production tools or animation software.

The finalized production will then be exported in a video format to be integrated into films, published on the web, web video channels, or social networks. This production may, at one time or another, be supplemented with interactive elements that will then make the project closer to an interactive project requiring knowledge of languages such as HTML, CSS, or JavaScript.

A Motion Designer can carry out their activities in audiovisual companies, advertising agencies, communication agency or web agencies. It is also more and more often present in large companies in any sector (public sector, banking/insurance, etc…), then integrating communication and internal production services.

But they also frequently freelance, being able to be integrated into creative teams for a specific project. In this case, they will be dependent on the missions they can find themselves in or through their networks.

Motion Graphic Design

The stages of a Motion Graphic Design project

Customer request

Based on a very precise specification and brief, the Motion Designer Graphic Designer meets and identifies the interlocutors of a project at the client, before questioning the brief and questioning the latter. The objective is to precisely reformulate this request according to the predefined marketing strategy, the guidelines of the product to be promoted. This makes it possible to better identify:

  • targets,
  • the brand territory,
  • the message to be conveyed,
  • the graphic universe,
  • the concept,
  • the product,

… as close as possible to the customer culture. This is the briefing task.


One of the first steps of the design will be the creation of a trend book or moodboard that will identify the first Motion Graphic Design elements of the project in accordance with the expectations and ideas of the client. He will not forget at this stage to also identify the possible sound accompaniments, voices, music, etc.


Then, the storyboard will focus on presenting the first elements of staging and sequencing of the different sequences. The aim here will be to verify the mutual understanding of the wishes, to image, to dig into certain ideas, and to propose evolutions. The story and the angle of narration will also be chosen and defined. Similarly, it will be necessary at this stage to define whether there is a need to integrate possible interactions according to the chosen broadcast medium (for the web in this case).


Once the customer agreement has been obtained on the storyboard and the models presented, the motion designer will be able to start the technical realization of the project:

  • production of 2D elements, via the emblematic software of the image (Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign),
  • production of 3D Motion Graphic Design elements with Cinema 4D for example,
  • integration of 2D/3D animations in After Effects,
  • integration of sound elements,
  • finalization of the production and export of the final file in ad-hoc format.
Motion Graphic Design

Motion Design profession: All The Know-Hows

The essential skills of the Motion Designer are numerous. Indeed, they are both Motion Graphic Design designers and technicians. They must be skilled in typography, image processing, know how to make mood boards and storyboards. They must master classic graphics software such as Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator but also editing/post-prod software such as After Effects and 3D animation software such as Cinema 4D. As such, video capture (image and sound) and post-production, the basic principles of the moving image as well as the culture and trends associated with these universes will be essential.

Also Read: Top Motion Design Tips for UI/UX Design | Creatibuzz

They must be very strongly aware of copyright issues since they’ll have to use existing images or sound accompaniments in many cases. Being passionate about the web and communication in all its forms is also a crucial requirement. Furthermore, versatility, creativity, responsiveness, and having a constant renewed taste for image, technique, software are the top criteria for being a great motion designer.

How to Get Started in Motion Graphic Design?

1. Research, research, and more research

2. Read as many books on Motion design as you can

3. Get obsessed till you become the best

4. Rack up skills and experience doing freelance jobs

Motion Graphic Design

In terms of ethics, A Motion Designer must:

Be empathetic to understand others in order to showcase, represent and transmit. They must know how to communicate, expose, be understood, and therefore, above all:

  • be sociable to integrate into a team,
  • be hardworking and passionate,
  • have a good level of English,
  • be able to supervise an entire project,
  • know how to accept criticism
  • question their own work.

Choosing the right Motion Designer training

While the offer remained marginal a few years ago, today there are several schools and training centers that prepare diplomas or professional titles in Motion Design.

Complete courses exist and train in the profession of Motion Designer Both in initial training for students (with prior preparatory classes for the diploma), and in professional training for web designers, 2D graphic designers, graphic designers, illustrators, video editors, animators of the animated films who wish to acquire additional skills can apply for such courses and develop themselves to better survive the market. Or they could do it all as a hobby. Learning a new skill does not always have to be lucrative. If a learner is exceptionally gifted, they can even get to enroll in Motion Graphic Design institutes free of cost or work at good companies as interns. The prospects in the field of motion design are boundless.

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