Finding the visual metaphor

Door Klaas van der Veen 23 November 2017

Some subjects beg for animation.

Most subjects can make do with a strip, a sequence of images, an infographic. The subjects that deserve animation have time and space as a main ingredient. But the masterpieces of animation are those that explain abstract subjects using a visual metaphor. They replace the unintelligible with the recognizable, and build on that.

You’ll recognize bad animations. One can understand them without the images, and they don’t explain, they merely show. Without beauty, or speed, or wit, their only claim to fame is that they are moving images. “Moving images are nice to look at”, designers will tell you. Well, not if they are uninspiring or beside the point.