An introduction to animation styles: 2D, 3D, whiteboard and mixed media

Naomi Linford Apr 14, 2021 12:00:23 PM

When you're creating an animated video, there are lots of different animation styles to choose from. Each style has different strengths and can reinforce your story in different ways. So, how do you know what style is right for you? 🤷‍♀️

To help you make the right choice, we're walking you through four of the most popular animation styles along with examples of each.

If you'd like your own video created in one of these styles then Sparkol Studio can help. Just drop us a message to discuss your ideas 😊

Let's chat

2D animation

We're starting things off with what is probably the most popular type of animation, and for good reason too! It's the endlessly appealing and original form of animation, 2D animation.

But don't be fooled by this deceptively simple style, it packs a punch. 2D animations use a playful and eye-catching mix of colors, motion and quirky characters to bring stories to life in two-dimensions.

Whether you want to create whole new worlds and characters or explain a complex process with simple visuals, 2D animation can help. That's the beauty of this style of video, it's super flexible and can easily be toned up or down to suit your message.

Get a feel for 2D animation with our quick showreel of recent customer projects 👇 


Whiteboard animation

Like 2D animations, whiteboard animations operate in a two-dimensional world. But unlike their colorful counterparts, this style of animation keeps things simple with a white background and line drawn graphics to mimic a school-style whiteboard.

This style really embraces simplicity to ensure your message is the star of the show. Because of that, whiteboard animation is a firm favorite for explainer videos and presentations, especially where the information is more complex. 

Whiteboard animations help you pare your message down to it's key components and reinforce understanding with easily recognizable visuals. Check out this example we created for IVE 👇


3D animation

Now let's take things up a gear with 3D animation. As the name suggests, 3D animation sets characters, scenes and movement in three-dimensions which makes it the most realistic type of animation. 

If you're looking for a more life-like or immersive experience then 3D animation is a great choice to bring your ideas to life with depth, texture and feeling. As the most technically complex type of animation to create it can also bring an extra sophistication to your videos as the quality of the work is clear.

Discover the 3D worlds we've created 👇✨


Mixed media video

Last but by no means least is mixed media video. This is where animation starts to merge with live action video to deliver the best of both worlds. It combines video footage with animated graphics, text and illustrations to give existing videos a new feel, depth or meaning. 

It's an increasingly popular style that's perfect for live demos, customer testimonials and interviews. Take a peek at our previous mixed media projects for inspiration 👇


That's a wrap on our introduction to four of the most popular animation styles - which was your favorite? Comment and let us know 💬

If you'd like a video created for you in any of these styles, get in touch with Sparkol Studio today to discuss your ideas 👇

Let's chat