2D animated videos are great choices for short presentations, or as content to add to your social media or website.
If you have a process to explain to an audience (especially a process that needs to be explained over and over again) – a 2D ‘flat’ style video is a stylish, relatively easy item to script, voice over and animate.
Fast to script, fast to design and fast to build
If you have a script ready to go, you can have a video voiced over and animated in a short amount of time, like a week. This makes it great for quick posts, and videos addressing a current topic where you don’t have a lot of time (or budget).
If not 2D video, then what?
Lets look at the alternatives:
- Shooting live video. This is way more expensive, time consuming, and often just not terribly effective at explaining a process. That said, if you have some stock footage in your library, that can be a handy asset to include to enhance your 2D video.
- 3D animation. It has come a long way, and has gotten a lot cheaper than it once was. Still, building all your elements in 3D is no small task, and requires specialist skills. Any edits will take some time to re-render. That said – if you are explaining a very technical topic, or have a large and important audience – it might be the way to go. But for day to day posts and communications, its out of reach.
- Use off the shelf video explainer software. Yes you will get a video out of it – but will you really want to show it to anyone? If you are happy with the templates they provide, it might work out ok. But if you want to have the video reflect your branding, you’re stuck.
Why do we like it? It ticks a bunch of boxes that makes it very friendly for us to use and turnaround projects in:
1. Its easy to source stock images we can modify. Whatever topic is being spoken about, we can find visuals that fit, and we can modify them to fit the overall style and content.
2. We can edit it quickly. Adobe After Effects lets us change up any element on screen. (Always build your files expecting changes!)
So this why we like 2D animated video so much.
And I’m happy to say that in our shop, we can build it all in house. Curious?
Take a look at our recent explainer videos here.
And we have a couple of video samples below:
Animated explainer video celebrating a milestone with members, with professional voiceover.
2 minute patient video explaining cardiovascular disease risk screening for Alberta Health.
How do we get started writing a script for a short animated video?
We can help you write an animated video script, or (probably better) you can come to use with a rough draft of the most important points that need to get across.
To get started, open up your favourite editing software and make two columns. In the first, write down what you want the voice over to say. In the next column, write out what visuals you think will best support that audio.
This simple format has been super effective to get ideas written down and organized, and allow us to hash out ideas long before we get into production.
When writing, keep the ideas distinct and short. A viewer’s eye can only focus on one thing, and we will want the audio and visuals to be acting on the same idea, at the same time.
How do words on a script translate to time on screen?
For recent videos we have done, 250 words is about 1 minute and 30 seconds. Yes you can probably say them faster, but a professional voice over will ‘perform’ the words, which tends to take a little more running time in the video. When people read their own words, they have a tendency to rush through them, and sound a bit fast.