Most of the animations I make are not as "real" looking as other animations I see. My animations are terrible I want my animation to look like these.

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    $\begingroup$ I recommend doing a lot of figure drawing. Just pencil and paper, draw quick rough sketches of people and focus on their movement and how it's expressed in the pose. Drawn To Life by Walt Stanchfield is a good pair of books for teaching these principles. $\endgroup$ Commented May 30, 2016 at 15:54

4 Answers 4


I would suggest that you study the 12 principles of animation closely. Looking at your animations, it's obvious you're not following these; for instance, the ease in, ease out rule. Your camera motions seem to abrupt, too stable. Too unnatural.

And then practice. A lot.

I also recommend the principles of animation series by Dan Floyd from Extra Credits/Play on Youtube, where he covers these principles and show some great implementation of these in games.

You may also want to take some classes in animation, such as Animation Mentor. Keep in mind that any class about animation, even if about traditional drawn animation, will help you master 3D animation.

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    $\begingroup$ A lot of professional animators speak highly of Animation Mentor, so if you can spare the time and money it's well worth it. $\endgroup$ Commented May 30, 2016 at 15:58

As mentioned by someonewithpc, the 12 principles of animation are a good basis. I always loved the way Cento Lodigiani illustrates them.


enter image description here

Also, look up his work for beautiful, organic animation: http://centolodigiani.tumblr.com/


Practice, Practice, Practice. I can't stress it more enough. I would also work on camera movement. There are some pretty good animation videos online.

  • $\begingroup$ If that was the only reason I would not ask the question I'm not seeing any progress I have practiced 2000 frames of animation for each one as practice yet I see no progress $\endgroup$
    – A guest
    Commented May 30, 2016 at 10:34

Here is a really cool secret you can do with the Dope Sheet that makes animation look more natural in minutes.

Before I begin, here's an interesting experiment that demonstrates the concept:

Stand up, arms loose and to the sides, and swivel your upper body clockwise, then counterclockwise, then clockwise, etc. You might notice that whenever you change directions, your arms take some time to catch up.

This is one of the secret sauces to natural motion, and it can be simulated quite nicely in the Dope Sheet!

First, animate like usual (where we go from one complete pose to the next). Here's a condor animation I made today (sans feather particles). The motion looks kind of stilted and dated, doesn't it?


Now, go to the Dope Sheet. Click a keyframe in one of the bone channels and press L to select the entire row. Offset each row a couple frames backwards as we progress along a chain of bones (if it doesn't look natural after we do this going in one direction along a chain, try going in the opposite direction and offsetting accordingly).

Then, if need be, try offsetting the entire chain's worth of bones a few more frames all at once, relative to other chains (this can help to further make limb movement even more natural).

But won't doing this interrupt loops? In order to do this with looping animation, simply select all the bones in the 3D View, go to the Graph Editor, and CTRL+SHIFT+M to add Cycles Modifiers to all the channels. Then leave the Graph Editor (because OH BOY does it slow things down when you keep it up with that many modifiers).

Here's our condor from earlier with offset bone channels, and I think most will agree its an improvement over the previous example:


Hope this helps any passersby! :) Peace and God bless!


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