2D animation and 3D animation


The smaller the project the less you gain from working in 3D animation. 2D is a long process, hand drawn animation will need specialists in this subject – currently not as popular / relevant as 3D in this generation (and so the lack of traditional animators). 3D will let the animator re-use the rig (for a series or movie)  and more access to moving camera around in scene – things can be easily changes and Pre-viz, can show the most cost effective angles for the client. There is alot more option and tricks to save time and money in 3D however you have to remember that there will also be in need of a 3D animator, or and a small team which can texture, model, rig, light, and render. Rendering takes a lot of time and is a slow process. 2D animation doesn’t need hardly the same time to render.  3D animation can be cheaper than hand drawn animation and faster however not as cheap as digital 2D work in a programme like after effects- there are alot of factors which contribute over the pricing of work with these medias:

“How do you decide? A lot depends on your visual preferences, but also consider questions such as:

  • Do we plan on re-using this animated character in future videos or advertisements?

  • Are we looking for a (potentially) permanent mascot or symbol for our brand?

  • Do we want to experiment with different characters in the future to target other segments?

  • What’s our timeline?

  • What’s our budget?

  • Where will these animations be displayed?

  • Should our animation be character-based, or information/process-based?”

(Source: http://overit.com/blog/2d-3d-animation-know-differences)


The 2D film industry has more or less come to a close.. with a stop from Disney – retiring the 2D department and opting for the future with 3D animation. However instead a new era has taken place, or experimentation of art styles and mix over between the two. Small businesses and others are exploring and experimenting with the tools – as well as creating new ones to create imaginative and beauty work which captures the personality of hand drawn and the accessibility of 3D animation / freedom it gives to play around with. We are at a stage now which is a era or innovation and the possibilities which the internet / software can give us. Creating new tools, interactivity and software which can combine 2D and 3D together is the future (and even know from the Paperman short – we can note how new processes are being created to create hybrid animation which is a complete cross over of 3D and 2D – as innovative as Pixar and 3D – could this be a life line for animated film industry – new direction: “It seems that the director John Kahrs wanted to bring back more of a 2d look and feel to the short while still keeping a 3d digital base. What resulted what something pretty unique and certainly very creative, not only artistically but technically too.”  (http://www.2danimationsoftwareguide.com/the-future-of-2d-animation-software-from-disney-of-course/)


“It’s just going to take a really amazing 2D film to come out with a really good story, interesting characters and look, and all of a sudden 2D will be back,” says Acker, whose film earned $15.3 million in its first week of release.

Lasseter, who studied under the tutelage of veteran Disney animators, promised fans more traditional efforts in the future, saying hand-drawn films can deliver certain things computer animation can’t.

Writer and animation veteran Mark Evanier echoes that sentiment.

“What’s driving 3D is that since everyone is deciding it’s the wave of the future…new animators are learning CGI instead of hand-drawn…so hand-drawn is simply being neglected,” says Evanier. ”Which is a shame because there is so much it can do that CGI can’t.”

“I love 3D. But the 3D we have today, with glasses, is a gimmick,” says Beck. “It’s a gimmick designed to get movie theaters to convert to digital projection… It’s just that the public is being misled into thinking 3D is the future.”

Source: http://www.newsarama.com/3842-future-of-3d-animation-is-anything-but-cloudy.html


“In technique 3D is becoming more adaptable all the time, and if necessary toon shaders can achieve something of the look and feel of drawn animation, but essentially all a toon shader can do is define outlines and fill in a completely logical way. 2D animation doesn’t have to be logical, it can be abstract and inspirational (usually derived from lack of sleep, caffeine and alcohol), and has a long history. Imagine a Tom & Jerry cartoon being re-made in 3D – all the exaggerated extremes would be lost, the timing would become too smooth and there would be more in-betweens than necessary (if you’ve got ’em use ’em). We can all still spot a gratuitous 3D insert into a 2D film.

Essentially, 3D is just a tool to help in the process of filmmaking, like any other. We certainly use it and choose to use it where it best suits the project, but essentially it should not be the medium that dictates the final result. The best starting point for a film is ideas, pencils and paper.


Above is an argument over 3D not having as much personality of what 2D animation has – alot of people still feel storngly over this median being the best because of hand drawn aspect to it – even if 3D animation looks and feels better there are those which still consider 2D as superior. It shows the impact which 2D has had on the industry after its long reign has finished (for now.)


“Although this does raise a lot of interesting points, it seems to ignore the largest part of the 2D animation industry, the internet. While 3D animation is definitely the future for large companies like Pixar, the online 2D animation industry is rapidly growing. 3D animation requires larger budgets and more people to work on, whereas 2D animation is much more readily available to new animators and independent developers, sites like YouTube can allow for large numbers of people to view animated series and shorts from around the world. Small budgets and small to single person teams allow for greater risks to be taken, and therefore a much greater variety of shows are available. If you ignore the online community, then yes 2D animation may be on the decline but with Networks and massive sites like YouTube in existence, which far outweigh the popularity of any cable network and companies like Frederator with over 4 billion views across the network, it cannot be ignored.”


There will always be a love of 2D animation and so it will never die – or though currently in feature films is not longer created by the larger companies in the west. However there is not doubt in the future it will make a comeback.


“I think one of the most exciting aspects of the future of 3D and digital is in the creative blend of mixed media,” states Hendry, explaining how traditionally mixed media has always looked quite collage-heavy and flat. “Now it is possible to do mixed media that doesn’t look like collage,” he continues.

“I think this is where animated feature films will go. I believe that the visual style will be driven purely by the sensibility of the filmmaker; animation will no longer mean hand drawn, 3D or stop-motion. Instead it will be a combination of everything.”


Why does it have to be one or the other? At the end of the day, 3D, stop motion, 2D are all tools used for story telling – instead of choosing just one, can’t we adopt several medias and combine – an experimental age is upon us. There are new ways which is presented to us depending on if its digital printing to make a stop motion and 2d animation, a  3D and 2D mixed style or a mixture of all – or even till we don’t recognize what medium it is.


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