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Types of animation

In this article you will learn about the most popular animation techniques:

Flick book:

Flick book is a set of papers where images are drawn on and the images gradually change from one page to the other so when the images move it will create the illusion that there are moving images on the paper. The oldest recording of a flick book was in 1868 and it was invented by john bernes linnet under the name “kineograph”, now flipbooks are toys that are common with children and now they are good item that is wanted by collectors. Flipbooks have been used by Walt Disney since 2007 to create a production logo at the beginning of films.

Cel animation:

Cel animation is short for celluloid animation, is a transparent sheet of paper where the animation is drawn on, celluloid was used in the past but now it is replaced by better technology. This technique was invented by Earl Hurd who started using this technique in 1914. Traditionally the outlines were hand drawn but later they were almost exclusively xerographer. The Simpsons in an example of a cartoon that was made using cel but now the creators have adopted better technology.

Stop motion:

Stop motion is an animation technique where objects are physically manipulated, and each small change is individually photographed so when the photographs are put together it will appear that the objects are moving. The first film made using stop motion is credited to J. Stuart Blackton in 1989. A good example of cartoons made using stop motion is Shaun the sheep.


Rotoscoping is an animation technique where animators trace over a motion picture frame by frame on a glass panel. Traditionally the live action animation was drawn on glass panel but later that equipment is replaced with computers. The technique was invented by max Fischer in 1915.


Zoetrope is an animation technique that uses a series of pictures or drawing that change gradually so when the images are moved to creates an illusion that makes the images look like they are moving. The first use of zoetrope was introduced first as a toy by Milton Bradley in 1866, but now it is used for a variety of reasons for example Pixar created a 3D zoetrope where it shows characters from toy story 2.


Kinetoscope is a device where the video is viewed from a hole on top of the device, the device works by creating an illusion by moving a strip of film over a light source, so the individual photographs appear to be animated. The first public demonstration of kinetoscope was held at the Brooklyn institute pf arts and sciences on May 9, 1893 and it was first invented by French inventor louis le prince.

Clay animation:

Clay animation is a type of stop motion where the character is made by clay or any other deformable material and usually even the environment is made with the deformable material, each animated piece is manipulated and each time they are photographed and put together to make an animation.

Clay animation was invented by William Harbutt in 1897, he made a book that had several images displayed in different positions. A first Claymation was first a book called “plastic method” and as technology has advances clay animation was used to make several cartoons like Shaun the sheep.