All your favorite childhood movies used 3D animation to amaze you with eye-catching visuals. From The Lion King to Toy Story 3 to The Matrix and Avatar, they all had the magic of 3D within them to help you escape into a digital dreamland.
Animations are becoming more and more popular as the technology is within reach for anyone who wants to create a dreamy visual experience.
In this blog, you’ll learn how 3D animation studios are growing and what the future of filmmaking looks like with more animation being used every day.
You will learn too
What is VFX and 3D animation? How is 3D animation impacting the film industry? 3D Animation and the Future of Filmmaking What are the current trends in 3D animation? How is the latest technology affecting today’s animators?
So, without further ado, let’s dive right in!
What are VFX and 3D animation?
Let’s start with VFX. What is VFX in a movie?
Visual effects or VFX are used to create images that cannot be captured with traditional photography. You, the creator, can use VFX to design environments that appear realistic to the eye.
Or you can even use these to enhance scenes with special effects.
What about 3D animation?
An animation is a bunch of images displayed as motion. Each individual image can show a unique movement from the other.
Animators create animations at a common frame rate of 24 frames per second. This corresponds to the movement speed that you normally perceive with the naked eye.
To make the animation more lifelike, animators can create animations in 2D or 3D.
If you too want to take your video experience to another level, you can also opt for 3D animation. There are many affordable 3D animation services out there for small businesses.
How is 3D animation changing the film industry?
3D animation has made it much easier for production houses to work on films and engage viewers with lifelike characters and scenes. Although these are animated, they appear lifelike to the eyes as the 3D animation makes them appear so.
For illustration, you can look at the Marvel movies and the Transformers series. Without the current advances in 3D animation, it would not have been possible for filmmakers to produce these films.
Even movies like Jurassic World and The Matrix use 3D animation to make you feel like you are living in the world shown. It’s so haunting.
Previously, filmmakers did not have easy access to VFX technology. Since it was expensive, it was only for the top creators in Hollywood.
But now it’s become a thing for everyone. From filmmakers to animation studios to brands and story creators, everyone has amazing stories to tell. And they do this by combining VFX and 3D animation.
Today’s 3D animation
You will agree that your childhood was blessed with movies like Harry Potter, Frozen and Zootopia. Most people confuse 3D animation with just a few movies.
And that’s not true. 3D animation has never been so accessible. It has become so popular that nowadays you cannot imagine a movie shot without the use of 3D animation.
At least in some way, most films use 3D animation technology to their advantage. Most blockbusters including Tenet, Dune and all Marvel movies have used animation.
And one technique has particularly caught on. This is the seamless fusion of live action and 3D animation.
Movies have a clear emphasis on realism. They use the highest quality animation technology to blur the lines between animation and reality. Matt Reeves’ Batman is a good example.
The film not only uses high-end technology called volume. The technology is smart and ridiculously fast. It renders and reacts to camera movements in real time.
And frankly, that’s just the beginning of movies. We can expect the pairing of VR and AR technologies to produce movies and cartoons in the future.
3D animation in the future of film
3D animation has come a long way in recent years. In 2023, it is estimated that the global animation market is currently worth USD 404 billion.
The industry is booming and the market is expected to continue growing at 4.79% per year between 2018 and 2023.
The expansion is primarily through the introduction of cutting-edge technologies in animation.
As the technology is more accessible and affordable, it has opened up new production opportunities for aspiring filmmakers in the animation niche.
It’s absurd to predict the future of 3D animation. As with most fields of study, the future is still uncertain. However, for those looking to capitalize on their growth, technology adoption would be key.
And with films like Avatar, where we have the treat of lifelike animation, that’s all you can ask for. But creatives and technology leaders know there’s always room for improvement.
It would be really interesting to see how the future develops for 3D animation technology. We’re already seeing companies and studios pairing it with alternate reality and virtual reality gadgets to delight fans with a more immersive experience.
Avatar 2 is just the beginning. The future will refine 3D, AR and VR technology to make the cinematic experience more immersive and highly entertaining for viewers.
In fact, there are already many custom 3D animation companies for virtual reality experiences.
What are some of the current trends in 3D animation?
Below are some of the most popular trends in 3D animation today.
Mascot characters, flat style characters and experimental surrealistic lo-fi animation and old school CGI animation and kinetic typography
As filmmakers will continue to adopt the latest technology, we know that 3D animation is now becoming more and more accessible. Companies are branding around animated themes and telling stories with wacky characters.
For one, it helps them stand out from the crowd. Second, 3D animation has universal appeal because attractive graphics can instantly grab and hold our attention. So people will be excited to learn more about your brands.
Animation is used by brands just as often as it is in TV programming.
Animation alone is not a magic bullet for success
However, it’s important to realize that animation alone cannot be viewed as a silver bullet for brand growth. Again, there needs to be a more strategic approach to content maintenance that keeps customer needs in mind.
How is technology affecting YouTubers?
With the artificial intelligence (AI) revolution (just accelerating), creators are worried and excited at the same time. For one thing, technology has unimaginable potential for creating art.
Second, as a powerful and surprisingly cheaper alternative to costly resources (human artists), it may soon replace them. And alarmingly (for the creatives), technology will only learn to get better. Here, too, it learns at an astonishingly fast pace.
As anxiety and uncertainty continues to mount for animators, it’s important to know that it only makes their job easier. And encourages them to tap into the more strategic or what I call the creative aspect of the job.
Creators don’t have to indulge in tedious or repetitive jobs when making art. While saving time, they can explore new possibilities.
Let’s wrap this up. Above we made a clear distinction between VFX and 3D animation. We also talked about how animation is being used in the film industry today. We mention the easy access to technology and the possibilities it offers for today’s aspirants.
Next, we looked at what the future of filmmaking with 3D animation looks like. What are the current trends and what are the latest movies using? To answer that, we shared examples from Batman and Avatar.
We also highlighted the current trends in 3D animation and how the technology is impacting today’s creators. We believe that technology will evolve and make high-end film-level technology accessible to more aspirants.