Stop Motion Ideas for Beginners

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STOP MOTION IDEAS FOR BEGINNERS

I would always suggest that you practice some basics (see tutorials here)  before launching it to a full blown stop motion animation video or movie. Items such as setting your stage, lighting , focus and selecting the best stop motion software to suit you are all vital. More advanced stop motion movies will follow such as improving the smoothness of your stop motion. Once you have mastered these then the below list of stop motion ideas for beginners will help you to get the most fun out of animation.

It can be a little confusing when starting out in the world of stop motion animation. Even if you fully understand the concept of stop motion coming up with good ideas can be a challenge for beginners. This will help to make the best stop motion movies possible.

Check our Claymation page for even more ideas for home and school / education.

1- EVERYDAY OBJECTS STOP MOTION MOVIES

Look around you. Any object that can be moved can be used to make a stop motion. The below example of an everyday object stop motion shows how the animator simply reached out to a nearby object and created an engaging animation. The set did not need to be created as the object was already sitting in its natural setting ready to go. You can use toys or figurines also which can bring such stop motions to life. This is one of the best stop motion examples of this style.

2-Whiteboard - Stop Motion

This is probably one of my favorites. All you need is a whiteboard and some whiteboard colored pens. You can create some very basic stop motion with this method. However if you are a good artist then the sky is the limit as shown be two examples below , one basic and one advanced. The method is open to all ages which make it a great idea for stop motion beginners. Just make sure you secure both your camera and your whiteboard.

3-    Paper Cut-out – Stop Motion

This is also a wonderful form of stop motion. It combines a real arts and crafts feel and the stop motion animation approach to great effect. You can either draw shapes or cut images from magazines to create an animated story. It’s a perfect animation form for school use. You will need a clean well lit table top and a camera suspended overhead. Make sure the camera is pointed directly downward and secured. You will need to make some space for you to work under the camera so ensure it is suspended high enough off the table top.  Watch those shadows also by standing clear of the camera when you take your snapshots.  The below is a wonderful example of this approach made by a relative beginner to stop motion.

4 - LEGO STOP MOTION

Probably the most popular method of stop motion among beginners, this is also well with the top 10 stop motion ideas for beginners. You will find millions of lego stop motions or “brickfilms” as they are sometimes called all over Youtube. There is no end to the animation ideas that can be found out there for this particular format. You can find some tips on this method under “how to make a lego movie” on our pages. I have given two examples below which I think are very creative and a relatively easy place to start. The good thing ( among many good points ) about LEGO is that you have both your set and characters ready made for you to use.

5    - Clay Morphing – Best Stop Motion Idea

The wonderful world of Claymation can never be left out of a top 10 stop motion ideas for beginners by any stretch of the imagination. There are lots of great ideas within the Claymation animation art  form. You don’t have to use armature to create stable characters with which to animate. You can make very simple characters without arms or legs and still have very engaging characters. Think of “Purple and Brown” for example from Aardman. You don’t even need to make characters at all. Simple shapes can be used to morph into other shapes in an artistic and entertaining manner. This is  a great way for beginners to get started. Check out our CLAYMATION ideas here.

6 – STICKY NOTES - STOP MOTION

This approach has some really intricate examples made by animation students and professional studios. I have given two examples below. The first made professionally and the other done by a hobbyist animator. Both will give you some good animation ideas for creating stop motions with this approach.

7- CHALK BOARD / GROUND – STOP MOTION

Chalk board stop motion is identical to whiteboard stop motion. So if you do not have access to a whiteboard but do have chalk then you can use the same approach. And because chalk can be used on the pavement and walls outside ( in a non-destructive manner ) it opens up all sorts of possibilities for working in the open air.

8 –HUMAN – STOP MOTION

Even though “humans” are animate by nature you can use your friends to create stop motions. Simply asking your subject to take small movements between frame snapshots can give some really interesting results. The most entertaining ones are often dubbed the “human skateboards”. I have given an example of one of the best stop motion ones out there on Youtube.

9- TIMELAPSE – STOP MOTION

Timelapse is in interesting one and quiet different from the others. In this form of stop motion you can simply set your computer / camera to take snapshots and equally spaced intervals over “normally” long period of time to capture things in nature that happen by themselves albeit slowly. Examples are rotting fruit or melting ice.  A nice example is shown here of rotting fruit over 74 days! A picture taken every 40 minutes.

10 REPLACEMENT STOP MOTION

This is more of a method of stop motion rather than a option for beginners. It is however a very easy and widely used form of stop motion that beginners can get really professional results from even at the beginning of their stop motion exploits. One of the best stop motion examples again show here. With all of the above examples don’t forget the importance of adding good animation sound effects.

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