SEATTLE EXPLAINER VIDEO COMPANIES ARTICLES
Why Is Whiteboard Animation So Effective?
We know there are many ways to make a video, so why is it that whiteboard animation stands head and shoulders above the rest?
It Starts with Drawing
With this medium, drawing is the defining characteristic, and when it comes to visual communication, drawing is one of the oldest forms. In fact, some cave drawings are more than 30,000 years old, which shows that long before the invention of paper, pottery, or even farming, drawings were used to communicate ideas. In fact, the idea of civilization itself was pre-dated by drawing by several thousand years.
Remember that every drawing ever made requires the viewer’s imagination to bring it to life: prior to that it’s just an illusion. And therein lies the beauty of whiteboard animation, because the viewer witnesses the creation of the illusion. New lines create possibilities, and the image is undefined until it becomes something recognizable. The viewer understands only too well that the artist is simply making lines on a whiteboard; however, these marks begin to transform as the drawing continues, and then something happens in the viewer’s mind: the marks become something recognizable – perhaps an object, a person, or a face. It’s simply magical watching something appear from just a few lines on a whiteboard; and perhaps part of the magic is that the viewer is left wondering what will happen next.
Telling a Story
Ultimately, a whiteboard animation is designed to tell a story; and storytelling is the perfect way to communicate an idea. It can be as instructional and direct as a training video, or as elaborate and fanciful as a fairytale. Perhaps the definition of whiteboard animation is that it’s the simultaneous process of verbal and visual storytelling. Studies show that, in terms of learning and retention, the simultaneous delivery of both visual and verbal material is more effective than using one mode by itself, or even in succession with another mode. Basically, learning is enhanced when the dual modality of whiteboard animation delivers a synergistic effect.
The Human Element
In today’s world of powerful computers there are many ways to create a drawing: there’s certainly no denying that computers can crunch out details and make drawings look sharp and clean, and they’re definitely vital in today’s media production. Even the videos we create are dependent on computers for various steps in the process. It’s become increasingly rare to find something made by hand, by a human, because we’re living in a world dominated by media that’s computer-based.
It’s this human element of whiteboard animation that brings such a level of authenticity to an idea, even though the viewer may not be aware of it. Whiteboard animation pulls an idea down to a human level, down to earth, making it easier to digest and making it more relatable. Perhaps whiteboard animation is so successful because the content becomes more approachable and less intimidating.
Contrast and Simplicity
The simplicity and contrast of black and white lines has become a welcome reprieve from the never-ending stimulation viewers are bombarded with from media channels and the Internet. More and more people are continuously connected to the Internet through their computers, smart phones, and other devices; and there’s certainly no shortage of sites to visit, songs to download, things to click on, and people to contact. It’s what’s commonly known today as information overload, and we’re facing it on a daily basis.
But, our minds are always looking for simplicity, and this desire is satisfied with whiteboard animation because it uses high contrast but simple images to tell a story. Our minds distill sensory input down to the essentials by discarding unnecessary fluff and nonsense. This happens all the time and, without this ability, we probably wouldn’t be able to function in today’s world – there’s simply too much going on. With whiteboard animation there are no unnecessary elements, so the mind is not required to dedicate resources to filter distractions, and can dedicate additional resources to the ideas being presented.
We Love Being Entertained!
Whiteboard videos are entertaining, and this goes back to the magic of watching someone draw. We’re all fascinated with the creative way an image relates to the spoken word. Besides using a live artist, animations are also used, which adds an entirely new level of intrigue and magic. When you have something that’s both interesting and engaging, it simply adds to the fascination of watching a whiteboard animation.
The Simplicity of Distribution
Because this is a digital video, it can be distributed in various layers among many platforms. It can be linked to in an email, hosted on a website, placed in an electronic textbook, shown in a presentation, uploaded, downloaded, copied, shared – whatever! Once your whiteboard animation is ready, you can use it or hand it out to anyone you like. Even while you’re sleeping, your video can be working for you 24 hours a day, travelling the world. What better way to reach your target audience?