How Much Does it Cost?
Animation is produced at a rate of $1,000 per completed HD video minute, including storyboard, voice over, animation, original music and sound effects. Payment is separated into four milestones of 1/4 payment of the total project. (1/4 = $250 for a 1-minute animation, or $500 for a 2-minute animation, or $1,250 for a 5-minute animation, etc). Payment must be received at each approved milestone before proceeding to the next milestone. The average animation runs 2 minutes long = $2,000.
1) A 1/4 deposit to initiate the project.
2) A 1/4 Payment upon completion of the storyboard sketch.
3) A 1/4 Payment upon completion of the final storyboard.
4) A 1/4 Payment upon completion of final animation.
If you don't have a script we can help you sculpt one. The golden number is 2 minutes in length. I produce many more animations for larger agencies, and they all stick to a 2 minute maximum. The script may or may not include visual directions.
From the script, I produce the first storyboard. It is usually quite loose, using just a black sharpie-like pen. I draw each scene based on the narrated text and any visual directions. This storyboard sketch will cover the overall scope of the project and help shape the script if it needs it.
You then provide feedback for another round of edits to the storyboard. Once the sketched storyboard is approved, I produce the final storyboard in the finished illustration or graphic style. This is the part of the project that takes the most time. Edits to the content or script, after the voice over and animation are produced, are considerably more costly to make than catching every potential edit in the storyboard phase. In my 30 years experience, catching the edits in the storyboard is always best. The storyboard is drawn in Adobe Illustrator.
Once the final storyboard is fully approved, then the voice over is recorded. I can do this myself for no additional cost, but I only have the one BBC reporter voice. I use my own voice over pros and to audition scripts for free. Once the talent is selected, it usually costs $300 for a great narration of 2-5 minutes.
The narration sets the tone and pace for the animation.
Using the voice over narration as a the timing guide, and the final storyboard as the art to animate from, I then begin the process of animation in Adobe Animate or Adobe After Effects. This usually takes 2-3 days, after which I post the HD animated video to an unlisted Youtube link.
Once you see it, there are usually only a few timing edits and perhaps last minute edits to the final "Call to Action" scene with contact info and links. If there are further edits to the content or script, this would involve re-recording voice over and animation edits that are very time consuming. Output to video itself, takes up to two hours after an edit is made, as the whole video has to be re-rendered.
The final approved HD video file is Dropboxed to you.
1) A 1/4 deposit due to initiate the project.
2) A 1/4 Payment due upon completion of the storyboard sketch.
3) A 1/4 Payment due upon completion of the final storyboard, plus cost of voice over ($300)
4) A 1/4 Final payment due upon completion of final animation.
These larger agencies charge their clients between 10-20 times my rate.
*For rush project less than 5 days or for working weekends, I charge double time