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How to Become an Animator? All You Need to Know

To become an animator, one can pursue formal education in animation or gain experience through internships or personal projects. With the right training and resources, anyone can become an expert animator. Read ahead to learn how to become an animator and turn your passion into a thriving career.

Learn how to make a UI/UX Design Portfolio by watching the video below

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Who is an Animator?

The animator is an artist who creates the illusion of motion by creating and manipulating still images. Animators design, draw, sketch, or render individual frames that form the animation. They work on the movement and timing of the animation to make it look smooth and lifelike. Animators use specialized software like Maya, Blender, After Effects, Flash, Toon Boom, etc. to animate their drawings and designs. 

The work of an Animator typically involves:

Creating character designs, storyboards, and animatics to plan out the animation. This includes designing characters, backgrounds, props, etc., and figuring out shot sequences and transitions.

Drawing or rendering individual frames of animation. This can involve hand-drawing on paper, using a graphics tablet, or 3D animation software. The animator makes minor changes to the drawings or images in each frame to create the illusion of movement.

Determining the timing, pace, and flow of the animation. Animators control how fast or slow, loose or realistic the movements appear based on the number of frames used. More frames mean smoother movements.

Collaborating with team members like directors, producers, artists, etc. Animators may work as part of a larger animation team. They provide and receive feedback to improve the overall animation.

Using specialized software to compile the sequence of images into an animated film or video. The software helps layer the images, synchronize them to sound, add effects, color correct, etc. 

Check out the Top 10 UI UX Design Examples to build your Portfolio!

How to Become an Animator? A Step-wise Approach

How to Become an Animator

An animator’s job is a daunting profession as it requires a combination of artistic talent, technical skills, and dedication to the craft. On a positive note, with the right mindset and resources, it is certainly achievable. To explore more about the expertise, one can follow the below-mentioned steps:

Develop Your Drawing Skills

The foundation of any animation career is a solid grasp of drawing and illustration. Animators bring characters and stories to life through sequential drawings and sketches. Start honing your craft by practicing the fundamentals of drawing, like perspective, anatomy, lighting, and proportions. Draw sketches of various animated characters to improve your skills. You can only draw a little, so sketch regularly and frequently. 

Learn Animation Techniques 

There are many animation techniques to master, including traditional 2D animation, 3D animation, stop motion, rotoscoping, and motion graphics. While 3D and stop motion animations rely more on software and models, 2D animation is still heavily dependent on drawing by hand. Study the 12 principles of animation which include concepts like squash and stretch, anticipation, staging, follow-through, etc. These core techniques will strengthen your animation skills.

Go through UX Designer Interview Questions to clear your interview with flying colors!

Master Animation Software

Today, most animation is created digitally using specialized software like Maya, Blender, After Effects, and Toon Boom Harmony. Pick one software to start with and learn how to model 3D characters, rig characters for animation, animate, render, and composite shots. Many of these tools offer free trials and tutorials to help you learn. Become proficient in a software program that matches your area of interest, whether 2D, 3D, or motion graphics.

Build Your Portfolio 

A portfolio featuring your best work is essential to land a job as an animator. Your respective portfolio should include a reel showcasing short clips of your animations, still renderings, storyboards, character designs, sketches, and illustrations. Moreover, share your work on websites like YouTube, Vimeo, and ArtStation to increase your visibility. You can also create small animations for clients to build your experience. Build a portfolio tailored for the specific animation roles you want, like character animator, layout artist, or visual effects artist.  

Earn a Degree

While not always required, earning a degree in animation, visual effects, art, or a related field can be helpful for your career. Bachelor’s and post-graduate programs teach foundational skills through a structured curriculum. You can also participate in internships and build connections in the animation industry. However, many successful animators are self-taught or learn on the job. So, a formal degree is optional if you have a strong portfolio and passion for animation.

To learn more about UI UX  enroll in the UI UX Design course.

Finding Work and Thriving in Your Career  

Once you have the skills in place, the next steps are finding work, building your experience, and advancing in your animation career:  

To learn UI Designer’s skills, check out UI Designer Skills!

Start Your Career as an Animator

With passion, patience, and persistence, you can build a successful career as an animator. Start honing your craft, create eye-catching animations for your portfolio, and look for openings at animation studios. The magical world of animation can turn into a dream career!

Starting a career as an animator is an exciting and rewarding journey into the world of creativity and imagination. As technology continues to advance and the demand for captivating visuals grows, animators play a crucial role in various industries. These industries include film, television, gaming, advertising, and digital media.

To embark on a successful career as an animator, it is essential to develop a strong foundation in art and animation principles. Building a portfolio that showcases your skills and creativity is crucial for standing out in a competitive industry. Whether you are interested in 2D or 3D animation, honing your skills in software tools such as Adobe Creative Suite, Maya, or Blender will be invaluable.

As technology continues to advance and new mediums for storytelling emerge, the future of animation appears promising. Animators are expected to continue playing a crucial role in the entertainment industry by creating engaging and immersive experiences for audiences.

Future of Animation

Animation is a continually evolving field. Constantly strengthen and diversify your skills to remain in demand as an animator. While software and tools will change with time, a foundation in the essential principles of animation will serve you well throughout your career. Stay passionate and never stop learning!

As an animator, you need to constantly improve your skills to stay up-to-date with trends in the industry. Here are some tips to strengthen your animation skills:

Tips to Strengthen your Animation Skills

Best Animation Tools and Software

Some popular animation tools and software in each category:

2D Animation Tools:

3D Animation Tools:

Instructional Design Animation Tools:


As said earlier, the animator profession is a challenging but rewarding journey. Just requires a combination of artistic talent, technical skills, and dedication. Ultimately, with the right mindset and resources, anyone with a passion for animation can embark on a fulfilling career bringing characters and stories to life. With talent, hard work, and persistence, you can build a rewarding career as an animator. Let your imagination guide you to animating memorable characters, scenes, and stories for years to come!

Feel free to contact our UI/UX community in case of any doubts!

The post How to Become an Animator? All You Need to Know appeared first on Intellipaat Blog.

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