What is the Difference Between 2D and 3D Animation? (With Examples)

November 14, 2019

Difference between 2D and 3D Animation

Noteworthy differences between 2D and 3D animation:

It’s a digital world, there is a trend of graphics and animation. Different illustrations are used to represent a series of emotions. The animation is one of unique art in which moving diagrams and pictures are constructed. There is manipulation in images that are converted to moving pictures in animation.

There are different kinds of animation that are traditional animation, 2D animation, 3D animation, motion graphics and stop motion. 3D and 2D are computer graphics. The primary difference between both types is the dimension in which 2D model of animation covers only two aspects, whereas 3D character includes three-dimensional things like the products in height, width and depth are measured. 2D objects signify only depth and height. Bitmap and graphics are used to create 2D animation. 2D model is the classical or traditional animation model that came into being in the last of 1800. In conventional methods, mostly, the artist used pencils to depict their art, but the advanced process of 2D animation involves the usage of computer software. 3D experience is one of the most overwhelming experiences in which the objects look similar to the physical objects.

The example is the 3D games that have now been introduced in which the gamers feel as if they are riding the automotive themselves in the exact environment shown on the screen. Similar to this, the 3D movies enable us to hear the volume as if something happened nearby and gives a uniquely bright and visual appearance. In 2D the objects or diagrams are drawn using different angles and perspectives whereas 3D objects have several of them.

Interesting facts:

They appear more realistic and original. Each of the two models has its own pros and cons. In 2D model the objects were drawn from frames to frames. The objects drawing is a continuous process and artists have to bring the missing parts again and again. The animating process in 3D is quite detailed and easy which does not require drawing again and again. The mathematical operations like graphs etc. are used in 3D. A typical film has 24 frames per second. There is a difference between 2D and 3D frame time. 3D animation can be compared to a sphere or a globe that can rotate to 360 degrees because it depicts real images. It is the gift of technology that such original images are detected. 2D includes working on two frames, whereas 3D means working on 3 to 4 frames simultaneously.

The significant differences are listed below:

  • The objects are two dimensional and three dimensional
  • There is a difference between their frame times.
  • 3D covers height width and depth, whereas 2D covers depth and height.
  • 2D animation relies on the drawing but 3D animation utilizes the computer software.
  • The difference lies in cost.
  • 2D animation revolves around frames, whereas 3D animation contains movement.
  • 2D model representation is flat whereas 3D’s representation is real.

Realistic differences:

Animation models are widely used to represent the characters or moving objects. 3D and 2D models are used by artists for the simulation of graphics and emotions. The moving objects are used by artists to demonstrate recent technologies. Even the viewers can tell and analyze the differences that lie in 2D and 3D animations because of their detailed specifications. The characters different lies in the gap of time frame, dimensions, specifications, drawing, software, and costly process.

Walt Disney modified and introduced 2D animation. The example is the Mickey Mouse series that became popular in the nineteenth century and still is popular. There is also a difference in the movements of the objects where 2D animations can only be moved horizontally, and 3D animation objects can walk along both axis. The 2D dimension representation is flat whereas 3D is alive and original. The selection of animation models is also a critical step, but that can be decided to keep in considerations the cost of the animation, the target audience who needs to see the animation.

The prices also vary, and the animation models are selected based on the cost one can spend on the production. The digital world utilizes different techniques and models to represent emotions.

Examples of 2D Animation

  • The Simpsons
  • The Lion King
  • Super Mario Bros

Examples of 3D Animation

  • Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
  • Despicable Me
  • Final Fantasy VII

You can also view examples at our portfolio, the work we have done for our clients! At Gram we provide both services but not limited to; 3D Animation & 2D Animation services.


Thinking about videos?

Let’s hear it, we are happy to discuss ideas with you.

Written By Ho Chang Jun

I am passionate about using videos, animations, and marketing to tell engaging stories and deliver powerful messages to the right audience. I watch videos from other studios and write marketing content in my free time.

Gram has helped businesses win their audience over with explainer video animations and corporate videos since 2014.


[email protected]

73 Ayer Rajah Crescent
#01-05 Singapore

+65 9878 4339

Don`t copy text!
Gram Website Of The Month