lindsay daniels design | Design For Motion
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16 Feb Design For Motion


Describing motion design has always been complex. I usually just give examples of highly designed things people see on TV like “television network graphics or main title sequences or Target commercials” to describe what I do because that seems to be the most effective tactic.

As a motion designer, I design logos, write scripts, direct live-action shoots, develop systems, envision camera movements, deconstruct brands, write music and so much more. Most projects are completely different and tap into different skill-sets. But, at the heart of every assignment I am asked to think conceptually, design smart and emotionally connect to audiences.

I have always believed that motion design has the power to emotionally resonate with audience better than any other form of design. It is a potent combination things that can get under your skin – music, film and storytelling. With the reach of the social media and online traffic, designing smart short format content is more important now than ever before. The majority of consumed communication is depending on it.

This section in the foreword of Design For Motion written by Justin Cone nicely sums up what motion design is and why it is relevant. The content of the book goes into the details and process will be an important education tool for the future motion designers.


“Why did graphic design become so important? The thoughtful combination of images and words can be incredibly powerful. Well-designed communications stand out from the noise of modern life and demand our attention. Wielded by nations and corporations, graphic design can sway millions of people to change their behavior and adopt new beliefs to go to war or to fight for peace.

The parallel development of broadcast television throughout the twentieth century laid the groundwork for a revolutionary new form of media. On one side, the communicative powers of graphic design had been honed to a fine craft. On the other side, television sets beamed entertainment and news into virtually every living room in the developed world. So when technology mad it possible to merge these two forces – to put graphic design in motion and transmit it around the globe – the hitherto marginalized filed of motion design accelerated rapidly toward the mainstream.

Adding the dimension of time to graphic design turned it into something new. Under the influence of a timeline, the old, static techniques of designers morphed into strange new fields ripe for exploration. Photography bloomed at 24 frames a second and became cinematography. Illustration danced under the spell of animation. Typography became a visual stream of consciousness seemingly capable of tapping to a viewer’s mind. To understand these new forms of communication, practitioners could lean on motion design’s mixed history of film, animation and visual effects. Often, though, they were like biologists in a jungle on an alien planet, labeling discoveries as they went, looking for commonalities to the world back home.

All of this newness and confusion has made teaching and mastering the field extremely difficult. Difficult, but not impossible. This book distills what we know so far. But it’s more than a shortcut through the wilderness. It’s a reminder of the richness of motion design. There is perhaps no other filed that draws so heavily on such a wide variety of creative disciplines, including (but not limited to) painting, illustration, writing, graphic design, animation, filmmaking, visual effects, sound design, music composition, computer science and on occasion, choreography. The master motion designer has a deep, enduring appreciation for all of these disciplines and more.”

Take a look at the full foreword here and the get the book on Amazon. I am honored to contribute a “Professional Perspective” to this book along side other creatives I admire so much such as Patrick Clair, Danny Yount, Karin Fong, Lauren Hartstone, Will Hyde, Erin Sarofsky and so many more.





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