Whiteboard Animation: Learn PhysicsShawn 01.09.2014
From RSA-style whiteboard animation to motion graphics, some of the best animated explainer videos out there aren’t for a product or business – they’re for an idea. Enjoy these great examples from the likes of National Geographic, novelist Amy Rosenthal, physicist Henry Reich, and something about money.
Is it Better to Walk or Run in the Rain? – Minute Physics
Minute Physics has settled many bar debates through clear whiteboard animation and RSA-style explainers. No question is too bizarre, and no physics quandary too complicated. Funnily enough, this one’s been making the rounds. Who knew over 5 million people were this interested in the weather?
Seven Billion: Are You Typical? – National Geographic
These thought provoking motion graphic shrugs voiceover for a song that will get stuck in your head. Arresting stats appear in iconic Nat Geo yellow slowly revealing tidbits about the world’s “most typical human.” We learn that he (yes it’s a “he”) is right-handed, 28 years-old, Chinese, owns a cell phone, but doesn’t have a bank account. Follow the yellow-brick motion graphic road and learn the rest about your “typical” fellow human. The composite image at the end is fantastic.
One Trillion Dollars Visualized – Mint.com
Ask someone what a brief case full of hundred dollar bills looks like and they’ll have a pretty good idea. Tell that same person to visualize $1 trillion – $1,000,000,000,000 – and they’ll count zeroes in the air in front of them (I just did) with no clue what that literal mountain of money looks like, let alone what it can do. Sometimes it takes animation to get a message across.
The clean graphics of this video, combined with tangible concepts – both big – the military budget of every NATO nation – and small – a $3 latte everyday for 900 million years – drive home the value of what $1 trillion can buy. An excellent marriage of a great script, compelling content, and clear delivery.
Kindness Thought Bubble – Amy Krouse Rosenthal/Thought Cafe
Amy starts slowly, and the 4:02 run time is a little long, but she gathers steam at 0:45, and the anecdotal story telling style, references to Confucian “Jen” philosophy, and quirky theme draw you in.
The animation and story arc give it a short film feel, but Amy includes all the elements of great explainer video, namely:
- Clear definitions
- Strong Value Statement
- Information on Complicated Topics
- A Conclusion
This is a great example of the less conventional long form explanation video, and is well worth watching. Spoiler alert: You might say, “Huh,” at the end. And mean it.
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