Production Processes, Perfected! – Working with Distant Future

A cartoon picture of a fictional animation machine, the Animatron 3000

Motion graphics, animation video, explainer animation, product animation, we apply our skills to achieve lots of different outcomes but everything is designed and created with the same, tested and proven process.

Over the last 12 years we’ve been refining the way we work to make sure all our productions go as smoothly as possible. In this blog article Lauren goes over what you can expect working with Distant Future, and what you’ll experience at every stage.

If you’re not much of a reader, skip straight to the bottom to watch an amazing animation which explains it all.

Coming to us for your animation project means you can get an animation produced from concept to delivery or we can jump in where ever you need us to start.

We have clients that come to us with a clear vision for their animated video and want us to realise that vision. We also have clients that aren’t sure where to start with planning animated content. At whatever point we get involved, we can help get the project completed, polished and delivered!

Here’s how our production process runs…


Often we start off with a video call to get to know a bit about the style and message of the animation, the company or product concerned, and get a feel for the tone. It’s also a good opportunity for us to get to know the client and for them to get to know us!


Coming up with the concepts and ideas is an exciting stage. We start by pulling ideas and inspirations into mood boards which we share with the person or team we’re working with to get their thoughts and feedback. This gives us a great spring board into crafting some bespoke concept art, helping steer the overall design into focus.

Then what happens?

Once the designs are refined and signed off, we’ll use them later to make the storyboards once the script is complete.

A montage of images showing cartoon illustrations of vector based characters at desks and screens.


Clients often come to us with a rough draft script and we work with them to refine and condense it into a strong concise message to keep their viewers engaged.

We can also start from scratch! Using resources given to us, like brochures and a company’s website, we can pull together the key points to build a great script that encompass everything our clients want to say.

If you’re writing your own script that’s going to be read at a fairly comfortable pace, we find 160 words per minute is a good a rule of thumb. So if you’re planning an animation that is only 30 seconds long, try and have no more than 80 words in your script!

With a signed off script we then source some appropriate voice over artists and work with the client to find the right voice over artist.


So, what is a treatment? A treatment is a written document that describes what is happening on screen throughout the animation. So while a script tells you what is being said, the treatment tells you what visuals will accompany those words.

A table that has two columns. The first column contains a script, the second column has a written description of action on screen.

The treatment stage also makes sure we understand the story, product, business or service that we’re showing, and that we’re not misrepresenting or misunderstanding anything.

Having everything in written form means we can make changes really quickly. It is faster to update a few lines in a Word document than it is to change intricate motion that’s taken weeks to animate. It’s a better use of our time and of course the client’s budget, so we iron out the kinks early.


This is where we really start to see things shaping up. Using the chosen concept art, script and treatment, we can start building something visual!

Our clients often get excited by this stage. We design the rest of the visuals and combine everything to show each key moment in the animation.

This shows you how everything will look on screen in sequence, combined with the script and treatment. It’s like little early snap shots in to how it’s going to look and what’s moving where.

This is another great opportunity to get feedback on how any characters look, any environments, and make sure products look how they should and that the right pipe is being attached to the right end!

Two panels from a storyboard showing a dog owner and their dog.


Once the storyboards have been signed off, we produce an animatic. An animatic is like a slide show that runs to the voice over and music. Yes if you want music we can help source that for you too!

The animatic helps inform animation timings, shot lengths, and shows the overall pace of the animation and makes sure it syncs up with the audio as planned.


That’s all the pre production done! With all stages signed off, we can now do the best bit, and can animate knowing that everything has been jiggled about, tweaked, reviewed and refined so it ends up being the best it can be.

Characters come to life, products burst apart and reassemble, the story gets told.

It’s all a very collaborative process, going through several stages of amends and tweaks to produce something we are proud to deliver and you are proud to release.

We love helping out at any stage so if you have an idea you would like to talk to us about, give us a call, or use our live chat window at the bottom right of this page!