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Animation has the power to break down complex topics by making the abstract tangible. But you can also achieve your objectives and remain brand-compliant by combining animation with other forms of video (aka “mixing media”). With Vyond Studio, you can create professional-quality mixed media videos that capture attention and sustain engagement all while remaining on-brand.

Not all Vyond videos need to be character-driven. With multiple styles and techniques available, there’s really no limit to the types of videos you can create. This brand video, for example, was created in Vyond Studio using stock footage alongside simple camera movements and enter/exit effects:

With Vyond, you’ll have a professional video editing tool at your fingertips to create custom-branded videos in-house. You can import photography, MP4s, screen recordings, brand fonts, and more into your video right from our platform—no previous editing skills required. Here are a few of our favorite strategies for creating unique animation and mixed media videos in Vyond.

1. Integrate real footage and animation

Adding a bit of animation to a live-action video (or via versa) is a great way to grab the viewers’ attention. Live video footage is ideal for showing a product or service in action. Plus, footage of a speaker can create a sense of personal connection that’s invaluable to marketing and sales.

In this Wake County Board of Elections video made in Vyond, real footage makes up the majority of the running time without a single animated character. Instead, the video cuts between background footage about the election process and useful animated text to support the voiceover.

In this next example, the combined live footage and animation create a combination that would look right at home on the Food Network. 

 

Watch more food stories and learn how they were made here.

How do you combine live-action and animation in Vyond?

Adding real video to a Vyond animation is simple: Import live footage into Vyond to animate around or on top of it. You can also export your Vyond animation into a secondary video editing platform like Adobe Premiere to make more advanced edits. 

Here’s a template video to help you practice mixing live footage with animation in Vyond.

2. Add photos to craft a personalized story

Consider adding live photos to your Vyond videos and making them more dynamic with shapes and movement. Even a static logo for your brand can be lightly animated to catch the viewer’s eye. There are several ways to include photos in Vyond videos. Here are two techniques:

Add energy to photos with movement

The photo itself doesn’t have to move to create a sense of action and motion in your video. Moving shapes through a static photo or logo also adds energy.

Consider the animation around the photo below. Pairing the image with rectangles and lines moving in opposite directions creates a feeling of motion. This moving shape effect works anywhere in a video, but it’s especially effective as an intro for a YouTube video, web conference, or animated learning course. Click the play button below to see a tutorial of how this was made in Vyond.

If you’re looking to simply make a photo move on its own, you also have the convenience of preset motion paths and you can use them on any asset. Bookmark this motion path guide and consult it whenever you need to add dynamic motion to your photos.

Mask photos into props

It’s also possible to “mask” photos into Vyond props and shapes. In the video below, photos are masked into animated polaroids. This technique is used throughout the introduction:

 

Watch these additional examples which include masking photos in Vyond Studio and then open them as template videos in your account to practice: Employee Appreciation Day, Women’s Suffrage, 3 Reasons to Attend an HBCU.

Learn more about masking in Vyond Studio. 

 

3. Animate your data with infographic charts & graphs

Charts. Bar graphs. Pie charts. Scatter plots. Important for understanding complex data? Absolutely. Eye-catching and memorable? Not exactly.

Animating these graphs with data visualization tools can turn a relatively dry presentation into a video people might actually want to share. Plus, animating data often makes the information more clear. If profits are increasing quarter over quarter, seeing the bars in a chart actually rise will cement that point.

The “Demystify the Origin of Data” video above, illustrates how simple, quality data can be animated in Vyond to appear more exciting and to tell a clear story. Visualizing percentages highlights their impact.

How do you animate data?

This video shows off some of what’s possible with data in Vyond. Beginning at 50 seconds you’ll see a quick and easy tutorial on how to animate data in Vyond.

Note: some transitional elements and effects in the video above were created outside of Vyond. 

4. Get creative with shapes and colors

The options for what you can accomplish with simple shapes and color in Vyond are endless. You can use shapes in Vyond to create any prop that doesn’t already exist, build custom scenes, create fun moving backgrounds, and more. Here are five shape-based visuals to inspire you:

How to animate with shapes

There’s no one right way to use shapes in Vyond, so it depends on what you’re looking to accomplish. Search “shape,” “square,” “circle,” or “triangle” in the Vyond props library, and get creative! In this advanced tips webinar, beginning at 22:13, Adriana explains how to create a custom prop with shapes. Rued Ruiis also shares tips for working with shapes in his “Go Beyond Vyond” course. 

Use this shape-based color gradient template to get started.

 

5. Remove character features

Sometimes you’ll want to use characters without specifying the character as a specific person. Or maybe animated characters are against your brand guidelines. Silhouettes, monochromatic characters, and featureless faces can be solutions to these concerns.

Here are seven fantastic ways to use silhouettes in your videos. 

Use this video as a template

How do you remove character features?

When you’re editing a character in the Vyond Character Creator, you have the option to remove features and change colors. To start with a character who already has their features removed, search for “silhouettes” in the Business Friendly stock character library. Then copy & edit this character by hovering over the character and clicking the three dots that appear to make adjustments. 

Ready to get extra creative? You can also make props, images, and animals speak by removing character features! Watch this tutorial.

6. Animate around screen recordings

If you’re trying to train someone on a digital product or service, consider creating a step-by-step screen recording. A school could create a digital enrollment walkthrough, or a doctor’s office might provide a tutorial for patients signing up to an online health portal. These screen recording tutorials are useful, but sometimes they can be dry and a bit boring. With the help of some animation tactics though, they can become much more engaging.

This video walks Brandman University instructors through the process of accessing Blackboard. The creator mixed images, screen recording video, text, and characters into the video to highlight the most important steps.

Cleveland Water uses a similar mixed media screen-recorded video to walk residents through the process of paying their water bills online, while UCLA Health created a tutorial video with Vyond to explain how to create IT tickets. 

How do you add a screen recording to Vyond?

There are numerous screen-recording programs to capture any digital process. We recommend taking a look at our list of screen-recording tools, which vary from professional (and sometimes expensive) to free and easy-to-use.

Once you’ve captured your screen and are happy with the results, your program of choice should allow you to export the final product to MP4. Then, you can upload that file as a new asset to your Vyond library and add it to the stage. From there, you can add arrows, text, characters, and more on top of, before, and after the screen recording.

 

7. Transform plain text into kinetic typography

Kinetic typography turns standard text into animation to capture attention. This method adds vibrancy and movement to what would otherwise be a simple block of text. 

If you’re unfamiliar with kinetic typography, this template video displays several examples:

Videos with kinetic typography are easy to read and attractive, even while watching without sound. This technique makes typography-based videos ideal for sharing on social media platforms, where a scrolling user might check your video out without turning on the sound.

Kinetic typography is also valuable for creating lyric videos, animating audio-only conversations, and marketing content.

How do you create kinetic typography?

Using kinetic typography in your Vyond videos is as simple as adding text elements to your animation and typing the words in. Multiple techniques can be deployed from there. These text elements can have any motion path or effect applied to them, for example. Add enter and exit effects, movement, and color to each individual text element. And considering each letter or word of a sentence could be its own text element if you choose, that gives you lots of free space to play in. Access more text-based video templates here and here

 

8. Stop Motion

You may recognize Stop Motion Animation from movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Chicken Run, and many others. The stop motion effect is achieved by physically moving objects in small increments, capturing them as still frames, and then turning the photos into a super-fast video. 

Stop motion can be a fun way to show off a product or process— cooking a dish, making a drink, unboxing a product, kitesurfing at home, and much more. Here’s an example of stop motion on a title graphic created in Vyond:

Image for decoration to visualize "stop motion." The words "Vyond" and "Special" moving across the screen

How do you create stop motion animation?

To mimic the stop motion effect in Vyond, you treat each animated scene in Vyond Studio as you would a live scene shot from a camera. Except you don’t need a camera.

Once you have your Vyond assets in their starting position on the stage, adjust the scene duration to approximately .2 seconds. Then use continue scene and move assets slightly in the second scene. Repeat this process until your assets are in their desired end location. Prakriti details the process in this video: 

 

Elevate your animated videos

Fully animated scenes are only one way to use Vyond. If you’re looking to create a branded video without characters, Vyond’s got your back. It’s just a matter of using the right media for the job.

You don’t need characters in every animation. Mixed media—including kinetic typography, photos, real video, and screen capture—along with animation techniques in Vyond will help you create dynamic videos that people remember. Use the suggested tactics to enjoy the benefits of animation while creating videos that also look professional and compelling.

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