Frequently Asked Questions

1. How much does an animation cost and how long does it take to produce?

  • As each project is unique it is difficult to provide a price without knowing your specific needs. Differing factors include the length of the animation, video resolution, added live action footage, voice over work, added sound effects, purchasing stock images or models and music if required.
  • The first step is to obtain a free no-obligation quote from me. This involves sending me a detailed description of what you want your animation to achieve, further details of what you envision your project to look like and which format you would like the animation in.
  • I can then respond with further questions specifically about your project to get an idea of production and labour requirements and give you an achievable timeframe for your project to be completed. If you have a particular completion date in mind this can also be considered.
  • Once the finer details of your project have been discussed and if you are happy with the quote and deadline, you can accept the quote and the animation process can begin.
  • If you are curious about how much your project may cost to produce at Highbeam Studios please contact us for an obligation free quote.

2. What is the animation process?

A lot of things need to happen to create a high quality medical animation. I have outlined them below along with a brief description of each stage.

  • Scripting

While we can help you with the scripting of the project it helps to have an outline of what you want to show. This can be used to quote the job and also to work out a full script.

  • Story boarding

Once the script has been approved we can then start on the Storyboarding. This is where we create basic drawings or images showing the general flow of the animation, the voice over script (if required) and take notes about each scene. We can then discuss this and refine it to the point that you are happy with what we plan on showing.

  • Modelling

Once we have the Storyboarding approved we will move onto the 3D modeling. This is where we start to create the actual 3D models that will be used in the animation. These may be models available within the Protien data bank or custom models we create from scratch. If we are working on a medical device animation it is helpful to have any CAD drawings or 3D files you may have. We also have a good collection of stock models we can use either as they are or we can modify them to suit your needs. This can help save on time and cost.

  • Shading and texturing

Once the models have been created and approved we then move onto finalising the appearance of them. This can involve painting textures on the models or using images to create the final look of certain objects.

  • Layout and Animations

When the models and textures are all approved we start give them some life. Layout and animation involves creating the 3D scenes and creating movement for all the objects and models in the scene. We aim to make this as realistic as possible according to your vision and direction. This may involve animating surgeries, the behaviour of cells or showing how blood flows in the body.

  • Animatics

During the Layout and Animation process we will send to you animatics of the animated scenes via email or Dropbox (other transfer options can be used). These are quick rough drafts created with the purpose of obtaining feedback from you about certain elements and make changes before the final look is applied. It is very important to remember that the animatics do not repesent the final look of the animation but we will remind you of this at the time. At this stage we encourage you to provide as much feedback as possible regarding the general layout and movement of your animation before we begin rendering.

  • Rendering

Once you have approved the animatics we move onto final rendering. This involves sending your scenes to our render farm which is made up of 20 high speed computers which work hard to render out all the frames of all your images. Most animations are made up of thousands of frames so rendering can take anything from a few hours to a few days. Before sending the scenes to render I will send you some style frames. These are some of the most important frames from the animation and they will have the final look applied. This gives you a chance to comment on the final look before we commit to rendering out the rest of the animation.

  • Composition

When we render out the animation we create what are called passes. This allows us to make changes to colours etc without having to redo the rendering process. It is much like Photoshop for video. This proves to be more cost effective as any small tweaks you want to make to the final look can be done quickly. Any major changes to the animation may incur extra costs. We would advise you of this before proceeding.

  • Final Revision

We have now completed your medical animation. We will send you one more version for final approval. This will be fully edited along with motion graphics, voice overs and sound effects. Once this has been approved we can deliver you the final animation in any format you require. (Format will be discussed at the start of the process)

3. What are your payment methods?

For my Australian customers I accept PayPal, cheque and bank transfers. For all international clients I can only accept payment by PayPal  or direct payment into out bank account. We do not accept cheques from clients outside of Australia. We are happy to discuss payment arrangements at the beginning of the production.

5. What kind of projects do you take on?

  • Our focus at Highbeam studios is to create compelling, accurate medical animations, whether they be surgery animations, MOA’s or device animations. We also can create Medical illustration, VR and augmented reality, E-Learning content and have a full editing suit for corporate videos, editing of conferences etc.

6. How many animators do you have in your team?\

  • I am the sole animator however I have a large number of skilled animators in different disciplines I can call on.

7. Can you supply voice overs and live action footage?

  • Voice overs and live action footage can be arranged at an additional cost. This will involve engaging the services of outside sources and will be discussed with the client.
  • If your original quote does not include additional services and you wish for us to arrange some, a supplementary quote will be offered to you and if you accept this, the cost will be added to your final invoice.

8. Can you include our own still images and logos in the animation project?

  • Your logos and images can be incorporated in your animation. You just need to provide the files.

9. How long is the average medical animation sequence?

  • The length of medical animations varies greatly, it’s hard to give a definitive answer to this. The general rule is to keep them under three minutes. In saying that, surgery animations typically tend to be longer. I have created medical animation projects that were only a few seconds, up to half and hour long. I can discuss this with you at our first meeting.

10. Where are you and how can I contact you?

  • I am based in Sydney, Australia. You can contact me by phone on 0420399085 between 9am – 5pm Monday to Saturday or email me at craigv@highbeamstudios.com at any time.

11. Will you agree to enter into a non-disclosure agreement for my project?

  • Yes. We respect that some projects need to be treated discreetly and under strict confidentiality.