Flipbook animation is one of the classics. It has a storied history, collected over little more than 200 years of use. Even today, it holds steady popularity amongst artists. Chances are you’ve given it a go, even if it might be in the form of a few bored doodles back in school.
If that sounds familiar, consider dusting off those old skills and giving flipbook animation another shot. It’s an excellent way to creatively express yourself or a message and be an irresistible attention grabber while doing so. In this article, we’ve selected a few examples of flipbook animation that we think really shows off what can be done with a pad, pens, and a creative spirit.
What is flipbook animation?
For those of you that haven’t heard of flipbook animation, we’ll give you a brief overview. The term refers to a series of individual drawings on individual pages of a small book. Each drawing will be slightly different from the next, creating the illusion of animation when the book is flipped through.
1. Godzilla vs. Kong
First on our list is this remarkable 856-page project by Flash Cat. This incredibly detailed animation provides an excellent showcase of the possibilities of flipbook animation, pitting two childhood icons against each other in a truly stunning battle. It’s no surprise that the video collected over 2.2 million views in less than a year, and we invite you to add to that tally.
2. Thanos vs. Iron Man
Another flipbook animation involving cultural titans, this time with an eye-watering 1,400 pages, is an aesthetic rendition of the fight between Thanos and Iron Man. Initially, the work was supposed to involve 1000 pages, but dP Art thought 600 hours just wasn’t enough. Roughly 136 hours and 400 pages later, this work of art was born, looking less like a series of drawings and more like a clip plucked straight from the film. The artistic talent on display is nothing short of inspiring.
3. Matrix style flipbook animation
This animation is another product of some serious effort, showing how flipbook animation can be used in video marketing. It features an animation showing an iconic scene, with a bit of artistic license, showing the fps abilities of LG Viewty’s then-new phones. If the 16.6 million views are anything to go by, the marketing stunt was a success.
4. Mechanical flipbooks
Taking a widely different turn, mechanical flipbooks, created by Juan Fontanive, bring a more modern touch to flipbook animation. The below example of Juan’s work shows off a beautiful selection of animated animals. Each machine smacks of care and detail and would make for a fantastic decoration.
5. The Return of Grumpy Cloud
The Return of Grumpy Cloud is a new and improved version of a previous flipbook created by Andymation. The first installment of Grumpy Cloud was excellent in its own right, but the Return is something else. It’s dazzlingly colorful, drips of personality and creativity, and even has sound and a backing track. What’s more, Andymation even includes an insight into his three-month-long project, something that might be useful for you budding flipbook animators.
6. Super Mario Flipbook
This next flipbook animation takes us back to the side-scrolling days of Nintendo. It showcases a full level of Super Mario, something that will look quite familiar to many and looks to hold the record for being the largest flipbook, at least on Youtube. It’s incredibly detailed and seamlessly put together, looking more like it’s unfolding on a screen rather than a flip pad.
7. PUBG Flipbook Animation
Admittedly, this isn’t exactly a flipbook, but instead an example of what can be done with the style in the digital age. Originally, the video was a trailer for an update to PUBG, a popular online game. However, one particularly creative individual decided it would look good in the style of a flipbook, and so we have this work of art to enjoy. While certainly a move away from the traditional pen and pad format, it shows that any idea can be realized well through flipbook animation, especially with the technology of today.
8. A Brief History of Pretty Much Everything
Another large undertaking, this flipbook animation, tells the tale of time, condensed into slightly more than three minutes. It’s yet another example of what a creative mind can do with the style of flipbook animation, a few colored pens, and a pad. This engaging, lighthearted overview of history racked up 4.2 million views, and it isn’t difficult to see why.
9. AOT Flipbook
Our penultimate flipbook animation example is an exceedingly well-put-together rendition of a scene from Attack on Titan, courtesy of MillkunTV. The level of detail in this 400-page project is astounding and serves as yet another example of what limits can be reached with flipbook animation. No wonder it pulled in over 22 million views. If you’re willing to put in the effort, you can create some truly incredible stuff.
10. Christmas comes along
Last up on our list is this particularly creative Christmas flipbook. Unlike anything else on this list and anything else we’ve seen, it incorporates the use of a 3D object to make the art literally pop out. It isn’t just a gimmick either; the flipbook can easily stand on its own, giving the illusion of flying through a winter wonderland.
That wraps up our list of flipbook animation examples. As you can see, despite the age of the animation style, it still has a lot of life left. Our examples are simply what we found interesting, but there are so many more flipbooks out there that showcase other aspects of what the style has to offer. Clearly, if you want to try your hand at creating something unique, flipbook animation can likely do the trick. If you’d like to know more about another type of animation, check out our article on the incredibly unique technique of sand animation!