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Motion graphic design is a subset of graphic design in that it uses graphic design principles in a filmmaking or video production context (or other temporally evolving visual medium) through the use of animation or filmic techniques. Examples include the kinetic typography and graphics used in film and television opening sequences, and the spinning, three-dimensional station identification logos of some television channels. The art form has been around for decades, and has advanced in technical sophistication over time.
A motion graphic designer may be a person trained in traditional graphic design who has learned to integrate additional elements into their existing skill set of design knowledge, though motion designers can also come from filmmaking or animation backgrounds, and may use tools or training from those fields as well.
Popular use of motion graphic design is used in the film industry. Openings to movies, television shows, and news programs can use photography, typography, and motion graphics to make the introduction more entertaining. The graphics used in television show introductions will usually represent the tone of the program. For example, high action television shows will contain fast-paced and bold graphics in the openings.
Technological advancements during the 20th and 21st centuries have greatly impacted the field; chief among these are improvements in modern computing technology, as computer programs for the film and video industries became more powerful and more widely available during this period. Modern motion graphic design typically involves any of several computerized tools and processes.
One of the leading computer programs used by modern motion graphic designers has been Adobe After Effects, which allows the user to create and modify graphics over time. Another relatively recent product used in the market is Apple Inc. Motion, now a part of Final Cut Studio. Software such as Maxon Cinema4D has integrated tools to create motion graphics, such as the native MoGraph plugin, or ICE of Softimage, which can also be used for similar purposes.
Adobe Flash has also been widely used to create motion graphic design, particularly for the web, where it is sometimes used in web design, but also in some animation products, such as animated web television productions like Homestar Runner.
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