Content Story: UI Animation

User Interface trends can change every few years, and that includes animating those user interfaces. Every time your finger touches a button and the screen shifts from one section to another is an example of UI animation. This was an assignment I was tasked with in my animation and motion class, and I struggled with it the first time around, which is why I chose to redo the assignment. 

With UI animation, everything is created from scratch, followed by you animating the design in order to make it look the way you want it to. UI animation needs to be animated with a purpose. You cannot just animate for the sake of animating; there needs to be a reason for each move that helps improve the user experience. Combining this realization alongside my intermediate skills with After Effects proved to be a big challenge the first time around, and though the challenge was still there the second time around, I figured I’d make the design a bit simpler so the overall animation can feel more professional. 

I chose to make an animation of a fake social media app. I designed the logo myself in After Effects, and it consists of two Wi-Fi signals facing opposite directions with a single base below both of them. I also designed the iPhone home screen and I’m pretty proud of how I made it look. Inside the app, it bears a striking resemblance to both YouTube and TikTok. The primary tab is live broadcasts, with the other tabs including a videos tab, create, shop, and profile. I chose to animate an endless scroll feed with the user switching tabs and scrolling sideways to preview videos that autoplay, as shown by the progress bar towards the bottom of the screen. I also animated the app closing and even included the blur effect you see while returning to the home screen. 

The only thing I wish I was able to implement was sound effects. After Effects was not playing any sound I placed in the program, so I chose to let it be, as I deemed sound effects unnecessary to make the animation more effective. I like the design of this new animation much better than my first one and I am glad I took the time to remake this one from scratch.

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