How to Create Educational Motion Graphics Videos

Creating short, simple videos that use simple animated graphics, illustrations, text and photography to explain something

Motion graphics video produced by Xplane for Kronos

If you have a service, product or concept that needs explaining, creating a short, motion graphics-based online video can be a very effective way to get your audience’s attention, engage them better and improve their learning experience.

You may think that you need high-end expensive software like Adobe’s After Effects or Apple’s Motion to create and publish motion graphics videos. And if you want to do sophisticated and complex motion graphics you will need dedicated motion graphics software. But you just might be surprised at the results you can get with some software that you already have on your computer.

Inspired by Xplane’s experimentation with Apple’s Keynote presentation software to make their “Did You Know?” video, I’ve used it myself on several projects over the last year and half. Apple Keynote, you say?

Xplane’s Bill Keaggy replies,

“Now, you may think of Keynote as the designer’s version of PowerPoint — which it certainly is — but I think of it as low-end video software.

Why? Keynote exports to Quicktime. You can set timing on slides and apply builds and motion to objects and type on those slides. That means you can make videos. “

Read more about what Bill has to say about Keynote for videos.

Note: Though this process describes using Apple’s Keynote presentation software, PC users can use PowerPoint in much the same way.

Here’s some more examples from Xplane:

How Will Your Week Work?

Carbon Economy

Tutorial: Creating Animated Infographic Videos with Apple Keynote

I’ve created a step-by-step, how-to tutorial that shows how to create a basic animated infographic video using Apple Keynote. The tutorial is free and available as the latest addition to my free Infograpchic Video Resouce Kit available for immediate download. The step-by-step guide, How to Create Basic Animated Videos with Apple Keynote, includes the PDF tutorial, along with example work project that includes; completed Keynote document, exported .mov movie, and graphics for the project.


Related Articles

Behind the Scenes: Visuals Ideation and Storyboard

Behind the Scenes: Creating Illustrations and Graphics

Behind the Scenes: Animation


  1. Great info, Jeff.

    Question — how to you manage Camtasia captures when Presentation Mode takes over the whole screen? It’s a bit of a Catch-22, as you can’t use controls from other apps when Keynote or PowerPoint are in full screen mode.

    Give my regards to Sprecks and Sugar Cove. Fond memories of big winds and warm water.

  2. Thanks Steve. I’m not sure I can answer your question since I don’t use any other controls when I do a Camtasia capture in full screen mode. In Keynote I usually have the transitions, builds and actions already timed to go automatically so I’m essentially just sitting back and watching Keynote play as a movie and Camtasia capture that. Sometimes I do advance things manually using the arrow keys on my keyboard, but I don’t use any other apps while I’m capturing. Is there a particular situation you have in mindy where you’ve needed to use another app while capturing a Keynote or Powerpoint presentation?

  3. Jeff — I figured it out with PowerPoint for Mac. You need to first fire a Camtasia capture and then start the PowerPoint Slide Show (you can’t fire Camtasia capture from within the Slide Show as Command+Shift+2 kicks you back to Normal mode). Once in Slide Show mode, you need to hide the pointer so it doesn’t show up in your Camtasia capture. After all the clicks, you end up trimming the first half of the capture in Camtasia if you are capturing a slide at a time. It definitely requires some patience, but the result is well worth it.

  4. Good point Steve. Yea, I do end up trimming of the beginning and end.