The term “motion graphics” covers a huge assortment of professions. Generally speaking, motion graphics are considered graphics that use video and/or animation technology to create the illusion of motion. Typically motion graphics are typically displayed on electronic media but can also be displayed by manual means as well. Some examples of manual motion graphics are thaumatrope, zoetropes, and flipbooks.
Motion graphics have existed since the 1800s but they really began to take off in the 1960s with designers such as Saul Bass and Pablo Ferro exploring the medium. In the 1980s the industry exploded with the development of computers. In the beginning special computers were made specifically for graphics. Quantel was one such company specializing in these computers. As computers became more powerful they were able to do more advanced motion graphics. Instead of specific computers for motion graphics there’s an assortment of programs that all have their specialty. Some of those include Adobe After Effects, Autodesk Maya, Nuke, Adobe Flash, Maxon Cinema 4d and Autodesk 3d Studio Max.
Motion graphics has many different disciplines within it. These disciplines include: motion design, color grading, visual effects, compositing, stop motion animation, and cell animation.
Storyboarding is an important part of motion graphics. Storyboarding is a process that organizes illustrations or images in such a way to help pre-visualize a motion graphic. Storyboarding was first developed in the early 1930s by the Walt Disney Studio. Storyboarding is essential to motion graphics. It allows one to alleviate any potential holes or inconsistencies in the plot as well as determine the overall look and feel of the piece.
This is just scratching the surface of everything that motion graphics is. I encourage you to read and learn more at motionographer.com