Curious about the drive to create...

I’m curious about what makes us tick… For those that use this application, whether you’re a hobbyist or a professional, what is it that drives you to animation? Specifically, it is the process of creating assets you like the most, or the process of using assets to tell a story?

For myself, since it’s only fair I answer if I expect others too, it’s more about telling the story. Quite frankly, I have very little artisitic talent. I practice and practice, but I just don’t seem to get any better. I think part of it is because I don’t necessarily want to be an artist. I don’t really want to know how to draw (although I understand the theories quite well… storyboarding, breaking things donw into primitive shapes, etc…). I don’t want to have to create everything that would go into a movie.

But I am interested in telling stories, in a visual medium. I’ve written loads of stories, and now I wish to tell some of them visually, but I usually get frustrated and give up, because again, I have to create everything. And I don’t want to be an artists… ARGH!!! It’s kind of a viscious circle…

Anyways, I’m just curious as to what drives others…

For me, it’s fun. I like drawing and never had the urge to get past stick-figures (by the way, kudos to Matt Feazell ( for his work). I liked doing flipbooks as a kid. I guess that I’ve never grown out of it.

Hi Joseph,

Like you, I want to see my story visually.

While I was in University studing management (motivating employees to work), the writers of the textbook said it isn’t money or fame that makes a motivated (high achiever) person go beyond the call of duty (do only the required amount of work). In other words some people are motivated to work extra by bonuses or recognition, but a high achiever person is motivated by stress. It’s the stress of not getting the work completed that motivates this type of person to go above what most people dream of doing.
The satisfaction and relief comes after (mountain top experience).


I actually relate to the OP a bit. I am just a hobbyist and I am more into music and storytelling. I actually got into the art side to make clips for my music etc.

However I do enjoy it a lot, I don’t aim to be the greatest artist in the world and if I match family guy type quaility I am super happy. I like to share what I know and help others (which in turn helps me become better) as shown my ton of tutorials.

Also I disagree what Lilly said about the Simpsons, I think artwise nowdays they are really awesome. Early on they were a bit dodgy but now they have the budget everything is done so well. Does anyone know at what point they switched to using toomboom products in their pipeline?

It does make sense that they have a different focus. Disney takes a couple of years to produce a ninety minute film while the TV shows are producing twenty hours of animation a year.

The thing that attracted me to art was the fact that I could visually construct characters, creatures, objects and even worlds that could otherwise only exist within the imagination. I guess that means I have a drive to create. What drew my attention specifically to 2D animation is the greater reliance on drawing, painting and design skills as opposed to the technical aspects of 3D asset creation. There’s a learning curve with every medium or software. However, when I was working in 3D it seemed like I was playing engineer and fiddling with technology more than feeling like an artist. I still plan on incorporating 3D elements in my work but the heavy lifting is going to be done with Animate 2 and other 2D packages.

In regard to storytelling I agree with Lily’s comment about teaming up with other folks who may be stronger than you in the area of asset creation. The art style used to tell your story is probably going to be a reflection of the way you see it in your mind’s eye. If it’s a sci-fi saga and you see it in stylized realism then you probably won’t be happy if you can only draw it in stick figures. Do what you have the passion and skill to do.

Because writing and artwork are both complicated processes it’s a bit rare to find people who are equally talented in both areas. Most creative types will gravitate toward one or the other. The good thing about this is that if you’re a talented writer you should have no problem finding someone to help complete your vision. Find a good artist/animator that feels the same way about writing as you do about art and you’ll soon turn those stories into movies.

I also enjoy writing. The script is an extremely important part of a project because it’s the basis for everything that follows. You can have amazing artwork and animation but if the story and or characters aren’t working most people who aren’t artists and trying to analyze the work will quickly lose interest and move on. I can’t tell you how many movies I’ve watched and though the story was terrible but loved what they did visually. However, a good story can hold the viewer’s attention even If the artwork is nothing special.

When I was much younger I saw the Simpson’s for the first time and was shocked. Before that, animation to me was Disney; anime like Speed Racer, Battle of The Planets and Robotech; Looney Toons and the Warner Bros. style. All of the latter were highly detailed and or fluidly animated to create the illusion of life. I thought to myself, “How the hell did this Simpsons thing get on television”? When I listened to the storyline it was hilarious and I soon found myself not caring about how crude the artwork seemed to me at the time. Good story trumps visuals almost every time.

Cindy made a comment about stress being a motivating factor in high achievers. I’m not sure that all artists fall into that category. I would agree that stress and structure are effective motivators that will push some personality types toward greater skill levels, especially in classroom settings. However, people are complicated and will have many different reasons why they came to be what they are.

What an interesting thread. I think for me, as with for many artists, I have to create. When I stop creating, I start to feel really bad - I need to constantly keep creating and innovating in order to find and explore my own life and interests. To me an artist is an artist so long as they cannot live without creating their art - whatever medium that art may be.

It’s a good thing that there are people out there who are stronger in some areas than in others, because this is what makes us a stronger team when we work together. If you’re stronger in the story side of it, then you can find someone to work with who’s stronger on the art side. Or you can deliberately develop a style that isn’t art-intensive. A lot of really good shows out there (Simpsons, South Park just to name a couple) are really not very strong shows artistically - but it’s their story that makes them shine through to success.


I totally agree with you TheRaider - their artwork now has grown leaps and bounds beyond what it was at the beginning. And I do really enjoy the artwork! All I meant to say was that the story to me is more important than the artwork. Whereas for example when I look at a Disney film, sometimes I’m just blown away by the art and sit back and go “Wow!”

But naturally, I enjoy Disney films and the Simpsons equally!