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What is the Major Difference Between 3D and 2D Animation?

You must have come across 3D and 2D animation videos before, either on your TV or the internet. You may be looking for the best explanation to questions like “what is 2D animation?” or “what is 3D animation?” and their differences. You only have to read this article to find answers to the questions.


What Is 2D Animation

Some 2D animation examples include the great 2D animations such as Looney Tunes (Elmer Fudd, Daffy Duck, Bugs Bunny), and Classic Disney (The Little Mermaid, The Jungle Book, Snow White). Some TV shows that used 2D animation videos include Rick and Morty, South Park, Family Guy, and The Simpsons.

2D animation has existed for over two centuries. It involved drawings of a character where one pose is followed by another with a slight difference at 24 frames per second. These drawings would be put together after artists had drawn and painted them on transparent plastic sheets known as “cels” and each of these drawings was photographed over a hand-painted background image and all the drawn images compiled to run as a film at 24fps.

However, the advancement in technology has brought about the creation of 2D software that allows 2D animators to apply digital colors on the cels to be photographed using the traditional approach. So, each animation component or element is composed on the computer interface. For instance, animation has been used in the design of interactive infographics


What Is 3D Animation

Some of the renowned 3D animation videos you may have seen include Pixar’s production, such as The Incredibles, Frozen, and Toy Story. DreamWorks projects like How to Train Your Dragon and Shrek are also great examples of 3D animation examples. Others are included in the feature film CGI like the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park, everything in Avatar, and the robots in Transformers.

Know that apart from stop motion that can be done with 2D and 3D animation, 3D animation is created and executed using premium animation software. Anything in the 3D animation world exists in the X, Y, Z format. So, rather than the flat drawing of a globe, 3D animation creates a sphere that can rotate 360 degrees. 3D animators can create impossible objects or drawings with 3D animation.

3D-animated objects, when modeled, have a realistic look as they resemble a physical object. They can be lighted differently, to create different shadows, and captured with diverse camera angles or views. Whereas, everything drawn in 2D animation, including camera movement, can only be done in only two-dimensional perspectives.

Besides, 3D animation makes the creation of realistic objects easy and hassle-free. Animators can apply different effects such as textures and lighting to make objects appear real and solid, which enables them to be integrated into live video elements seamlessly.

It is noteworthy that both 3D and 2D animation methods have their pros and cons. The best method, however, will be determined by the client’s preferred strategy and requirements, but both 3D and 2D animation methods allow the creation of incredible objects or items, which are implausible in the real world. 

With the unlimited possibilities provided by both 3D and 2D animation, the future of 3D and the future of 2D pose no threat to each other. Today, many companies offer topnotch 3D animation service, while others create amazing 2D animation explainer videos. Quite a lot can be achieved from the creation of whiteboard animation characters to the design of interactive infographics and data visualization that are all used for content marketing or marketing campaigns that aim to engage the audience.


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