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Drawing is Fun: Why Animations Make Work Feel Like Play

Drawing is Fun: Why Animations Make Work Feel Like Play

Comics artist and creativity advocate Lynda Barry has spent her career encouraging people to draw. She says drawing is a part of thinking: There’s no right or wrong way to do it. It builds communication and coordination, and it’s fun.

When we’re having fun doing anything–but for the sake of this article, particularly when we’re at work–we care more, stay engaged and efficient for longer stretches of time, and feel more connected to the people around us. Animations prioritize fun and for many of us, watching someone draw in an animation can be just as exciting as lifting the pencil ourselves. (Shout out to Blue’s Clues.)

In fact, Neuroscience studies show that our brains love to anticipate what happens next when watching someone draw. From an advocacy, business, and education perspective: It increases retention and exceeds laughter quotas. Whiteboard animations (and Pictionary) were invented for this.

Beyond games, here are some other reasons that explainer animations makes work more like play:

We spend all day reading.

There are many, many emails in our lives and yet the most important ones still disappear to that special land of lost socks and forgotten umbrellas. On average only 28% of text on a webpage is read. Meanwhile,

We like to laugh.

In fact, we love to laugh. Humor is a powerful tool and animations are more likely to incorporate it than your analytics report. Just saying.

Your Brain

Your Brain on Explainer Animations

It reminds us of when we were kids.

From Mulan to Into the Spider Verse, animations are generally made for the 12 and under crowd. Bringing them to an adult audience makes space for new playfulness and creativity. And, coincidentally, more learning.

At Next Day Animations, we love to draw. We’ve made a business out of it. And as disciples of Lyda Barry, we’re fierce advocates that everyone should draw more, unhindered by what’s “good” or “realistic”.


Check out more of Lynda Barry’s thoughts and doodle along to the video below: