3 min to read

Motion Design: Past, Present, and Future

Picture of Dyachenko Anastasia
Dyachenko Anastasia
CEO at Cadabra Studio. UX expert and business consultant

While we are on the web, motion effects surround us even if we do not realize it. Modern interfaces are created to align with the real-life pace of motion — using a laptop or cellphone you don’t have to think of how the objects come and go.

Why Is Motion Graphics Important?

Motion graphics elements are designed to fit the real world perfectly and it is how the magic works. It went so far that people don’t just buy products, they actually buy the interfaces, the lively designs, and those appealing interactions — when a digital experience is great it captures the audience’s attention and strikes their imagination.


An animated design can do a lot — entertain the user with funny loaders, inform them with progress bars or tutorials, load the animated layout, distract attention with beautiful motion videos when needed, alert a user about an error, help them navigate and a host of other things!


Animation vs. Motion 

Motion graphics history is for a long-standing and it started much earlier than the first cartoons appeared. By the way, talking about the history of motion graphics phenomena it is important to define the difference between the animation and motion design.


The animation is a blanket term for the whole field of moving images, while motion graphics is a type of animation — motion graphics is a moving or animated graphic design. It focuses more on graphic design elements movement but has less storytelling than other types of animation. Nevertheless, the historical root is the same.

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Animation by Matthew Jedrzejewski

The History of Motion Graphics

So, what was the first animation and who stands behind the process of animation evolution? Let’s discover it together!


The moment when the magic began was much earlier than the first moving images could possibly appear. It was 1659 when Christiaan Huygens invented the magic lantern — an early type of image projector to show painted, printed or produced photographically pictures on transparent plates (usually made of glass).


It used one or more lenses and was a popular entertainment instrument. Huygens machine was three-lenses — his sketches for magic lantern slides have been dated back to 1659 and are the oldest known document concerning the magic lantern.


The next milestone event is the appearance of a phenakistoscope. It was introduced by a Belgian physicist Joseph Plateau in 1832. The mechanism consisted of two circular discs and regarded as one of the first forms of moving media entertainment that paved the way for the future motion picture and film industry.


Inventor Joseph Plateau did not give a name for the device, It is sometimes compared to GIF animation since both show a short continuous loop. Phenakistoscope was spread in Europe and America during the nineteenth century until William George Horner invented the zoetrope, which did not require a viewing mirror. Referred to as the “wheel of life”, the zoetrope was a short cylinder with an open top that rotated on a central axis. 


So that was some first prototypes of original motion devices. They are amazing, aren’t they? 


The approach to motion design is deeply rooted in traditional animation. An epoch of traditional animation began in the 20th century — synchronized sound and color, the appearance of the legendary Mickie Mouse and Looney Tunes heralded a new era. The other milestone event was the release of the first full-length animated movie created using computer animation technology — it was a Toy Story in 1995.


So, there are the featured events of the motion designed development. The rest is already a history. 

Motion Graphics — What Is the Future?

Welcome back to the 20-21 century when the motion is the integral essential part of any online product. Motion design trends were essential to follow for the last decade and it still gives some great ideas on how to boost the business by means of design. 

For instance, in 2020 storytelling is expected to be a great trend in web design, and motion is a perfect way to tell the story of your brand or product. 3D effects, typography, grain effects — all the latest web design trends will affect the future of motion design.


Check out how motion affects your product and what it takes to be a great motion designer in our latest blog articles. 

Frequently Asked Questions

The cost of medical app development depends on several factors like your needs, set of features, technology stack, and so on. Though our business analytics make sure to not spend an unnecessary penny.

To make a mobile app screen, you need to create a user flow diagram for each screen, draw wireframes, select design templates, and colors, create layouts, and create an animated prototype.

We usually take our clients through the following steps:

  1. Planning and Research; 
  2. Prototyping;
  3. Design;
  4. Development;
  5. Testing;
  6. Release;
  7. Maintenance.

You will participate in every stage of the development process and get regular updates.

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