What Are the Hardest Things to Animate?

Good animation requires a solid budget, a large dedicated team, things to animate defined creators’ vision, and the high skill of all team members. And even if there is none of this, but there is a fantastic story that begs to be shown on the screen, you are welcome to find your animators at Explain Ninja and get the work done in no time. Here we know the animation is complex and are ready for any motion graphic production challenges.

Created by Explain Ninja

How difficult is animation?

Is animation hard? Yes, it is. Animation is quite a complex process that includes applying a variety of techniques, various styles, and approaches, and each may go with its benefits and drawbacks, depending on the project type and complexity. How you animate the website elements and how you do an anime will dramatically differ.

However, a professional animator may admit that it’s not so much that it’s difficult as it is that it takes much time and patience to create awesome animation. A 5-minute long video might take up to many painstaking months to develop if you really need it to look especially spectacular.

Watch more on Vimeo

Like any other creative art form, working on animation can be as easy or hard depending on what you want it to become in the end. With 2D animation, all you need to get started is a pencil and some basic animation design software. If you’re looking to create beautiful animated cartoons, doodles, etc., the best first step will be hiring a designer that can handle work with static drawing skills. Sometimes video templates come in handy.

5 Hardest things to animate

What is the hardest thing to draw? Well, depending on the project, it may be anything in it. Here are the most complicated things to animate, its elements or even the process phases that any professional motion designer may admit.

1)    Website animation

To accomplish a professional animation for the website, you need to see how it works and get the elements that it consists of to assemble. So ideally it may be GIF or video + animation objects in the form of images (illustration). For example:

Sometimes, instead of the full video, static images of at least three motion states are also enough: initial, intermediate, and final + descriptions of transitions and effects. Here, as with the designer, developers agree that if something epic is planned there, then it is better to see it in dynamics and understand it better. An example of an app animation:

Homely project

It often seems that even experienced programmers, who made more than a dozen complex sites, sometimes even very creative and beautiful ones, never dealt with complex animations that are written on the canvas. Despite the fact, technically, they can figure out how to do that in no time, get layouts in Figma, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc. from the designers and implement it for the website layout. And what should it look like? The hardest part here will be to make designers and coders align with what they see and how they think it should look and function at the end.

2)    Character design

When it comes to character design and creating a person animated and their bodies moving, this is the first thing to admit hard because it’s actually where the animation starts. To make sure that every element, no matter how small it is, looks really believable, from size and movement to some facial expressions, breathing, and personalities what Disney was trying to do back in the years when he actually introduced his animation techniques to the world. They are still a basis in animation.

Onomy character

3)    Fight scenes

It turned out to be more difficult to animate fights and walk cycles. Here the motion designers may blow their minds at endless phase creations, while they create walks, phase it, revise, redo clumsy movements as you gradually progress, phase, again phase, revise the cycle, redo clumsy pieces again, understand that it will not get better, and move on to the next piece.

Nexus design

4)    Liquids

According to Designbuzz: ‘liquids are one of the most difficult things to animate, as the designers must consider texture, movement, and how it reacts with other objects.’

Agree that working with hard objects may be exhausting and turns out the hardest everything. Not mentioning fluids and liquids and similar, which motion physics is extremely hard to imitate. For instance, animated waves require a better artistic understanding of form, often color and shades, and light, and knowing how these elements should work together to create realistic water or at least imitate its natural movements.

Source: Dribbble

5) Finalization

Finalization of the story is the most difficult thing because you may need to watch the finished work every day numerous times and review the general assembly in order to search for the flaws, both plot and motion graphics. After the first 5 stable views, the eye gets blurred both for the animator and the screenwriters, and for everyone who is involved in the checkout process. However, professionals make the plot originally adjusted for multiple revisions in search of numerous details scattered throughout the length of the animate cartoon so it won’t be as painful as it seems.

Why is animation so expensive?

The truth is that the average movie animation may cost 15-25,000 USD. A 2D animation studio may give you a quote for a 60-second video that may cost anywhere between 10,000 and 100,000 USD. However, much depends on the project, which is always quite individual. 

So, animation design is expensive primarily because of the skilled human resource. Professional animators involved in postproduction or movies or work for big computer animation projects are highly skilled. They undergo extensive training, polish their skill, and make much effort to bring creative ideas to the table. And this is why the lion’s share of the animation budget goes into the hardest things to animate and the remuneration of animators who can do that.


Is animating hard? It may be both. Good animation requires a great animator, a solid budget, a large dedicated team, and at least a good idea worth time and effort, other animation things to create even the hardest things to draw and turn into a masterpiece. To draw the most challenging elements, hire highly skilled creators and a dedicated team with years of expertise. And if you need to produce awesome animated explainer videos for your business, feel free with your ideas in no time here!

What are you waiting for? Just leave us a note, we’ll respond faster than Flash would do!

Contact Us