3D Animation: Overview and Introduction


3D Animation: Overview and Introduction 

3D Animation is a subset of 3D Computer graphics and refers to an entire industry that uses 3D animation computer software and hardware in various productions. For the purposes of this tutorial, “3D animation” includes both static images and real solid models printed on a rapid prototyper. However, 3D animation is all about motion and animation. 


Film, video, visualizations, and rapid prototyping are just a few of the industries that use 3D animation. The term “3D animation” is still new, and its full scope is unknown.


Exploring 3D Animation Industry


To learn more about what a 3D animator can do today, read on.


1. Television

A single 3D animated television show requires a lot of money and time. However, 3D animation is increasingly being used in regular TV shows on networks like Discovery Health, History, and Science. These visuals are usually used in educational shows to help the audience understand certain concepts.


2. Video Games

Using 3D software, artists can create virtual worlds and characters that can be played in a video game engine. This industry is hugely popular and lucrative, comparable to the film industry. Games cinematic are cinematically created cut scenes that help advance the story between levels.


3. Advertising

Advertising thrives on quick animations. A product or service can be demonstrated or described in ten seconds to five minutes. These short animations must be able to convey a lot of information quickly. 3D advertising animation, like film and television, can be entirely 3D or include mixed-media visual effects.


4. Law

Legal animation includes forensics, accident reconstruction, and simulation. This type of animation is used in court cases to establish, refute, or expand on facts. It can be a hand-keyed animation of the crime scene that allows the judge or jury to move around and study it as needed.


5. Architecture

Architects have used CAD software since the 1980s to create more stable and effective designs. Architects today use 3D software in conjunction with CAD programs to not only create models but also test and visualize them before building them. Architects can use software like Autodesk AutoCAD and Autodesk Revit to test their designs’ stability in specific conditions, like a natural disaster.

And there are many other applications that include medicine, film industry, and product visualization,


History of 3D Animation


It’s exciting to work in 3D animation today. Unlike centuries-old art forms like drawing and painting, 3D animation is still in its infancy. Every year, new ideas and methods emerge. To truly understand the art form’s history, one must examine its technology. 3D animation would not exist without computers, and many computer advancements have been directly influenced by the 3D animation industry.


Early Computers: Konrad Zuse’s Z1 was said to be the first mechanical computer. The 1943 Colossus is also frequently cited as the first computer. However, John Whitney Sr. used a computer to create the opening title sequence for Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo in the late 1950s. Many discoveries have occurred from this time till present days.


The 1960s period was regarded as “The Dawn of Computer Animation”, 1970s is known as “The Building Blocks of 3D Animation”, then “The Foundations of Modern Computing” occurred during the 1980s’ and in the 1990s: 3D Animation Achieves Commercial Success


2000s: The Refining of 3D Animation


A race seemed to be on each year between what the industry desired and how technology dictated the industry’s advancement. Personal workstations could run most commercial 3D software in the early 2000s, eliminating the need for expensive graphic workstations. Three-dimensional video games ruled the industry. NVIDIA dominated the gaming graphics card market and became a PC standard. New video game consoles with faster hardware were released to improve graphics and frame rates.


To outdo the previous CG/3D release in terms of graphics and visual effects was the goal. Pixar’s Monsters Inc. (2001) demonstrated 3D fur’s effectiveness. A.I. (2001) pioneered 3D animation for visual effects. The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) pioneered crowd simulation. Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001) attempted to create photorealistic humans in 3D. In spite of mixed reviews, this film pushed 3D animation to create more realistic human characters. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) made significant advances in 3D animation with the motion-captured 3D animated Gollum character.


Audiences were used to high-quality 3D animation and visual effects by the early 2000s. Almost every film has been touched up. A majority of people were unaware that advertising used 3D animation. Advertising for cars began using 3D models rather than the actual vehicle.


Every year, new technologies, hardware, and software products are released, making predictions impossible. The fact that this industry is only 50 years old means that many of its pioneers are still alive and creating today. You can meet them online or at conferences. It’s like asking Leonardo Da Vinci or Rembrandt for advice or insight into their art. This industry or art form has never allowed such access to masters while also knowing they create new art. This is an exciting industry that will remain so for some time.