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What is Motion Graphics Software? (And How to Create Video Animations)


If you want to create an engaging video, you might never have to press "record" on a video camera. With the emergence of videos that lean on motion graphics, it's easier than ever to create a video with no footage required.

In this article, you'll learn more about motion graphics and the top tools and templates to create graphical videos of your own. Let's dive in.

What are Motion Graphics?

Motion graphics is a broad term, but the simplest explanation is that motion graphics are animated graphic designs. Whether it's a simple moving logo or complex title series, motion graphics animate a production in ways that video alone can't. With a series of motion graphics, you can create an informative or entertaining video, and with the advent of affordable and easy-to-use software (more on that below), motion graphics have become one of the most popular ways to create a video.

Check out this video explaining the NBA draft for an example of a motion graphic-focused video.

Some of the most popular YouTube videos feature simple motion graphics and voiceovers to create engaging productions.

Motion graphic videos tend to fit one of two key categories:

  • Dedicated motion graphic videos mean that moving shapes, characters, and text are the focus of the video. These videos typically don't feature stock footage or photos and rely on motion graphics for the main visual elements.
  • Standard videos feature motion graphics that add to the production. You might use a couple of motion graphics to break up lengthy videos.

Examples of Motion Graphic-Driven Videos

Check out the example below for one of the most popular motion graphic videos on YouTube:

As you can see in this video, using motion graphics with an explanatory voice track is a great way to create an interesting video.

Another of my favorite genres of motion graphic videos is the explainer. These informative videos run the gamut from motion graphics only to a mix of footage and motion graphics. Check out the example below.

In explainer videos, motion graphics are common tools to explain concepts. By combining moving shapes and text with explanatory audio tracks, you can explain practically any idea.

Learn more about creating explainers in the tutorial below:

Modern software makes it easier to create motion graphics. It wasn't that long ago that videos like this had to be hand-animated. Read on to find out more about the top tools to create motion graphic videos—easily.

What Tools Can Create Motion Graphics?

If you're ready to start creating and adding motion graphics to your video, you might be wondering what tools you can use to create motion graphics. Let's look at a few of the most popular software solutions to create motion graphics.

Adobe After Effects

Adobe After Effects might be the best-known tool in the motion graphics landscape. It's a powerful program that is more than enough to use as a standalone tool. Part of Adobe's Creative Suite you can also use After Effects seamlessly with Premiere, to add more animation than that tool can do on its own. 

On Envato Tuts+, we have a deep library of Adobe After Effects tutorials that will help you to create great motion graphics quickly and easily. Check out the course below to kick off your learning:

Apple Motion

What After Effects is to Premiere, Apple Motion is to Final Cut Pro. The animation-centric counterpart that adds many controls to help you create motion graphics for your video production on macOS.

Check out a list of the best logo templates that include motion graphics in the round-up below:


Even though the apps above are far easier than hand-animation, they still feature a significant learning curve.

If you just want to create a motion graphics video with simple effects, turn to a browser-based tool like Placeit (also from Envato). Using only your web browser, you can create videos that feature motion graphics. 

Placeit Video Creator
Create motion graphics with nothing more than your web browser and Placeit.

Choose a template, make your customizations, and export a finished video file. Even though Placeit is a browser-based tool, you can create full video files with your branding and color scheme.

The Best Source for Motion Graphic Templates

Motion graphics are easier when you use one of the software tools that you saw above. And each of those apps benefits from templates that already have most of the work completed for you.

The best source for motion graphic templates is Envato Elements, the all-you-can download creative library.

Envato Elements motion graphics template
Use motion graphics templates from Envato Elements to create animations easily.

Whether you use Apple Motion, Adobe After Effects, or another app, you can source motion graphic templates that already have most of the work finished for you. Just add your details and animate your project to life!

Remember, you can pair motion graphics with footage and photos, too. And that's yet another place that Envato Elements shines, thanks to the deep library of stock footage and photos. Your subscription unlocks unlimited downloads for those assets as well.

Envato Elements Stock footage
The same Envato Elements subscription that unlocks motion graphics templates also grants access to more than 400,000 stock footage clips you can combine with your graphics.

With a subscription to Envato Elements, you unlock an unlimited number of motion graphic templates plus footage and photos. Combine these with your voiceover track to create a great motion graphic video.

More Motion Graphic Resources

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