Hello! I am here today to give you some insight about how much money it costs to create an animated video (of any kind). In order to do this, we have to first know what kind of project it is, then determine its budget and duration. Let’s take a look at these things now!
First off, let's discuss the type of animation we are talking about. There are two major types: 2D and 3D. If you have never worked in either field before, don't worry; we'll lay out everything in detail below. A general overview is enough for this lesson though.
The second thing we should cover is budgeting. How much will you spend on animating? That depends entirely on if you want something simple or elaborate. One way to estimate would be to go to the nearest mall and look around at different stores. See what kind of prices they offer for products like this. Now, time. We have already discussed this above, but it bears repeating. The amount of time it takes to produce an animated video varies depending on the number of frames, the complexity of the characters, etc. However, it is generally not less than 6 months. So, if you expect to animate anything less than 1 minute, you need to plan accordingly. That covers all of our bases. Now, let's break down exactly how much each step of making an animated video costs.
Step 1 - Storyboarding
This is the creation phase of the video. You'll start with pencil sketches, hand drawings, storyboards, and rough drafts. This will help you determine the style of animation you want, whether 2D or 3D, and where each scene will fall in the finished product. It can vary in price anywhere from $10-$200, depending on the size of the team working on it. Keep in mind that the person doing the drawing may charge extra for their work, which means that you might end up paying somewhere between $25-$350 per character. That said, the bigger the team you hire for this stage, the lower the final fee should be.
Step 2 - Character Design
Once you've determined the style of the animation, it's time to design all of the elements. This includes characters, backgrounds, props, dialogue, music, sound effects, and everything else. Again, the amount of time spent on this stage will depend on the size of the production. At Guru 99 Studios, we often have teams of 5 people who work together throughout the entire production process. As such, the final fee will be much smaller, somewhere between $50-$300. Keep in mind that this does not include background artists or colorists, just designers.
Step 3 - Animation
Here comes the fun stuff! Animators start getting hands-on with the software. They sketch out how the characters move and interact with one another. Then they start rigging (or putting pieces) onto the frame. Rigging is basically the art of moving parts individually so they look realistic. As you can imagine, this is a laborious process. At Guru 99 Studios we always have at least 10 people working on each frame. Depending on the complexity of the scene, this could mean anywhere from $500 to $1500 per frame.
Step 4 - Cleanup
As the name implies, cleanup is the last stage of production. All of the previous steps were done on paper, so there is a lot of cleaning, tidying up, and coloring to be done. To keep the production costs low, it's best to only have one artist working on this step. Otherwise, the final price tag will skyrocket. The typical fees for this step range from $100 to $600, depending on the complexity of the work.
So, there you have it! An outline of how much it costs to make an animated video. Hopefully, this helps you decide whether or not you want to make one yourself! Best of luck on your journey to becoming a professional animator!