A Quick Q&A with Markus Magnusson, Motion Designer & Patreon Tutorial Maestro
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We caught up with WNW Member Markus Magnusson, a motion designer and illustrator who has worked with top clients like Google, ESPN, YouTube, and Dropbox, to discuss his favorite projects, industry struggles, the future of motion, and his new full-time creative career as an animation instructor on Patreon.
Are you currently freelance or Full-Time?
How did you first get into motion and animation?
I started goofing around with Macromedia Flash (now known as Adobe Animate) back in the early 2000s and the rest is history.
What is your daily process like?
I can’t really call it a process but it normally entails too much screen-time (working, emailing, looking for inspiration on Pinterest, scrolling Instagram, etc.). It makes me a tad jealous of all those stop-motion artists who get to work with physical things. I actually took a 3-month computer break back in 2016 to play around with toy-making... Who knows, perhaps I’ll do a stop motion tutorial soon ;)
Which program or programs are most vital in giving you the tools to express yourself creatively?
Adobe Illustrator and After Effects are both invaluable to me.
Let's talk money, terms and conditions. What are the struggles in your industry?
I think one of the more common problems is pricing your work. Only you know how much your work is ultimately worth but if you’re a bit unsure then talk to other people with similar skillsets… Just don’t sell yourself short. Motionographer did a Motion Design Census back in 2010 that was extremely helpful for me; I wish there was a more recent version.
What was the impetus behind creating your own tutorials?
I had a brief moment last year where I wasn’t engulfed with client work. So I thought to myself, "why not start a Patreon page and share some of my insights?" Now I do this full-time and feel really blessed.
A motion project can often be a major investment of labor and time. How many projects do you complete per year on average?
I do around 12 projects every year. Yup, that’s one project a month which I ultimately break down into a tutorial for my patrons. Before Patreon, I still did around 10-12 projects each year. I personally like to do a lot of new things and so I’ve tried to steer my career away from long-format animations. I did some bigger things in my early days that really drained me, but lesson learned.
What would be your dream project, or is it already on your resume?
I’ve actually worked on some of my dream projects already. Like doing a Google doodle, YouTube Rewind doodle, and dropbox sticker pack. And if all that wasn’t enough, I now get to work 100% on my Patreon endeavour, which is a dream project in of itself.
Overall I’m pretty happy. But if one of the bigger brands out there wants me to do an animation for Times Square then by all means, send me an email.
How do you predict motion will evolve as a field in the next 5 years?
I think we’ll see a lot more traditional animation techniques coupled with modern mediums (2d vector, 3d, etc). Just peep the work from studios like Buck, Odd Fellows, and Giant Ant to see what I’m talking about.