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Invention and Design animation for product

Hey guys. Thanks for taking a look... :up:
I am an inventor and designer with some cross over abilities in general design work and I was wondering whether I could get some advice from you.
I am doing an info product for inventors on the web which I hope will save inventors all round the world a lot of time and money.
In the past, whenever I have had challenges, I have often been able to complete them and my preference is always to add a new skill to myself if it is always possible.
With that in mind, I was wondering whther you could give some advice as I'm sure you'll know the answer to this.
I completed a lot of the design work for my company on Illustrator, and now I'm faced with the challenge of several animations (albeit not at all complex ones) for cut scenes in this info product I am making/filming/editing.
One of the main animations, I need to fairly rapidly spin my company logo (a basic pdf file I have) and for it to start in middle of the screen, advance as it starts spinning to front of screen, and then return to its normal position. There is 2 seconds of audio to go with it (It will be a 2 second animation) and I already have the audio.
I would love to do this myself, not just to save money, but because as an inventor and designer, it is invaluable to have these skills.
So I was wondering- do you think I could do it, and which program would you recommend using?
I don't have much worries about editing the audio in- I have to do some audio editing for my product anyway, its more the spinning and the movement forward and back. However, since it just goes forward and back I would think this is not the most complex action.
Would appreciate any info, and even if you think this is not possible, that would be good info too.
I'd love to do it myself and I'm aware there's loads of free trials on the net I could probably complete it on.
Thanks for reading and for the advice.
December X


Staff member
3ds max (and other 3d software) is capable of doing what you want although it works better with 3d images than what would ultimately be a 2d 'plane' so in that respect I'd not suggest using it.

Well depending on the design of the logo you could do it using photoshops animation tools, you would need to think about it like you would an animated gif,

There's also the 3d element of the 'extended' photoshop versions which should do it but I've never used it so can't say much more on it.

Once done it would need to be exported into a video editing software (ms and apple both have free options which should do it) where you would then add the audio etc
If the logo is quite simple you can just get the same font (if it is font based) and write it in the 3d program and it'll extrude it for you (that's how it works in softimage anyway)

If you do build the logo in 3D and only for this one job I would avoid 3Ds max it's pretty pricey £3000. Maya is also available at a similar price. These two are the big guns and if you're serious about it these are the programs common in the industry.

Cinema 4D do a cheaper at £600ish for a cut down version.

Softimage used to do a cut down version but I think it stopped when autodesk bought them out but you can get the full thing for £1750. There is also a free version for game mods for the source engine so I guess it won't work for your purposes though but you might want to check it out. Also I love softimage it's what I learnt 3D on.

There are free open source 3D programs the best I'd say is blender, there's also google sketch up but that did my head in when I tried it.

You can probably do the same effect in a motion graphics/composition program like after effects, there might be a free motion graphics program somewhere.