This is kind of a follow up to Dan Savage's earlier post about Motion Design becoming self aware. That earlier post that generated such great discussion and the basic questions has stayed in the back of my mind and I do not think was really answered. Where is Motion Design as a practice at right now? It is an 'Industry'?
Perhaps this can give some perspective to that question:
DemoFest is happening at the Amsterdam Train Station next Thursday. I was lucky enough to be selected to be in the show, one of about 300 from about 3000 entries.
I looked through the participant list and was surprised by the dominant representation of traditional design firms and the almost non-existence of typical motion design work. One would think that with 80 screens showing video for 24 hours you would see the type of work that you see on Motionographer or Vimeo.
Instead the majority of the participants are branding, identity and design firms or designers. There is a strong emphasis on typography. What illustration there is tends to be in the style of Kyle Platts or Alexis Jamet, who are not really representative of mainstream motion design work. There are also a fair amount of generative artists in the show.
Many of these designers or design firms do not even have motion in their portfolio. What will they show? No one will know until the day of the show. Hopefully they post the files somewhere after so they can be seen. You can go to the DemoFest Instagram page to see some samples.
This is fascinating to me and what I think it says is that traditional design firms see these 80 big panels in the Amsterdam Train Station as THEIR canvases to work with and are not about to cede them to motion designers just because it is a video display, Studio Dumbar, a traditional branding and design firm are the ones who organized DemoFest.
It makes sense, really. Design firms have been creating the images that went on the static display ads in the train station, I presume, for the past 100 years. They are just adapting to current technology. Design firms are not at war with Motion Design. But perhaps they are reclaiming some turf.
Motion Designers have revered and emulated traditional animation and see that as the ultimate place to be. Everything in Motion Design has been moving in that direction. The term 'cel animation' is seen all over the place.
But now that screens are everywhere perhaps Design firms will begin to reassert the principles of design and typography that they have focused on for their history. As they are doing in DemoFest. And they will own the motion that goes with it, whatever that means.
So is Motion Design part of the Narrative Film Industry, or the Design Industry? Or is it something else entirely?