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3D Animation: Everything You Need to Know

Updated: Jul 2

Do you want to become a 3D animator? Or are you just interested in this field?

Let me guide you on this exciting adventure.

Inside out 2
Inside out 2

Inside Out 2 is a huge hit at the box office, and you might be wondering how to create a film like that, or how to work on such productions. Here’s "3D Animation: Everything You Need to Know."

Animation: What is it?

It's the illusion of movement. By scrolling a sequence of images in front of our eyes, the brain interprets them as being in motion. This is the principle of the film reel (before digital technology ^^).

But here, the actors are drawn by hand or by computer using software. There are several styles and techniques of animation that you probably already know. If you want to learn more. There are several styles of animation:

  • Cartoon

  • Realistic

  • Japanese Animation (Anime / Manga style)

  • And many others!

Animation styles
Naruto, Jurassic World, Looney tunes

And there are a multitude of techniques:

  • Traditional Animation (2D on paper or celluloid)

  • 3D Animation

  • Stop Motion

  • Zoetrope, Sand Animation, Cut-out Animation, etc.

Animation techniques
Wallace & Gromit , Up - Pixar, Lion King - Disney

To learn more about the techniques and the fields in which animators work, I have detailed everything in this article.

how to become animator

How to learn animation?

You have several options available to you! But first, the good news:

Know that a degree in this field won't serve you much; only your skills matter and will help you find employment. Furthermore, you can learn at your own pace and in the way that suits you best:

My guide to learning animation.


Tell a story! That's the foundation!

Make a short film, a movie, an advertisement, create video games, produce medical videos, architectural views, or just for fun!

What tools do you need?

Tranfromers, Totoro, Mario bros, Love death and robots, arcane
Tranfromers, Totoro, Mario bros, Love death and robots, arcane

  • Traditional Animation: Paper, a pencil, and a peg-bar!

  • Digital 2D Animation: A computer, a digital tablet (e.g., Wacom), 2D animation software (e.g., Toon Boom).

Which 3D software to use?

Here are 8 3D animation software options:

  • Maya

  • Blender

  • 3DSMax

  • C4D

  • Unity

  • Rumba

  • Cascadeur

  • Unreal

3d animation software

Do you have questions?

What are the main qualities needed to be an animator?

  • A sense of observation

  • A sense of rhythm

  • Patience

  • A passion for cinema

Do you need to know how to draw?

  • No, if you want to do 3D.

  • Yes, obviously, if you want to do 2D, but everything can be learned.

Is a diploma important?

  • No, as I mentioned earlier, only your skills will be considered during interviews, as well as your soft skills (like teamwork).

Do you absolutely need to go to a school?

That depends on you:

  • Your budget

  • The time you have to dedicate to your studies

  • Your way of working

  • There are many ways to learn; it's up to you to choose the one that suits you best.

What is the salary of an animator?

I refer you to this Google sheet, where you will find many salaries based on the country and experience.

That concludes "3D Animation: Everything You Need to Know,"

but wait!

Do you want more resources?

It's here!

animation ressources

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