Animation in websites and dynamic web applications plays a very important role in attracting attention and improving user experience. These animations are made with CSS markup language, which is used in different parts of the website such as buttons and links, menus, welcome pages, the introduction of products and services, data display, statistics, and many other parts.

In this article, the introduction of animation in CSS and its construction steps have been discussed.

What is CSS Animation?

Animation in CSS is a way to create movement and dynamic effects on website elements. Using CSS codes, the web designer moves, resizes, or even changes the color of the various website elements. These animations make the website attractive and improve the user experience.

For example, let’s say we have a button and we want the button to pop up slowly when the user moves the mouse over it. By using animation in CSS, we can create this movement and give the button a lively and attractive look that attracts users’ attention.

To learn more about animation in CSS, we must first learn about the two concepts of keyframes and properties in CSS.

What is a keyframe?

Keyframes are a set of states that define how an element moves over time. In other words, keyframes are the main points of animation. The programmer specifies what state different points of the animation should have at different times.

What is meant by Properties in CSS?

CSS properties allow the programmer to change various properties of website elements over time. These changes include transform (change shape and position), opacity (transparency), and color (color), but any other properties that can be changed in CSS can also be applied.

For example, with transform, you can move an element up, down, right, or left, or even rotate and resize it. Also, by changing the opacity, you can set the transparency of an element to change from visible to invisible (or vice versa). And by changing color, you can change the color of an element.

Learning animation design in CSS

Step 1: Define the key points of the animation

As mentioned, each CSS animation has a set of keyframes. Key points are important times in the animation, marked using percentages. These percentages show what changes are happening at each moment of the animation. For example, the start of the animation (0%) and the end of the animation (100%).

Second step: defining animation-name and animation-duration properties

Animation properties assign key points to a particular element and define how it moves. These two properties are necessary to apply any type of animation in CSS.

  • animation-name

The animation-name property specifies the name of the key point. When naming your animation, you can use the letters a to z, numbers 0 to 9, and the symbols “-” and “_”.

If multiple key points describe the animation of an element, then multiple values must be defined for the animation-name attribute. To do this, you can separate the keyframe names with a space and a comma.

  • animation-duration

The animation-duration attribute specifies the duration of the animation. Although the animation may be in the form of a loop that repeats regularly, the number of seconds or milliseconds must be specified in the animation-duration property. This property can be defined as zero or any positive value. Negative values are not allowed.

The third step: defining other required characteristics of the animation

In addition to the properties mentioned in the previous section, some other main properties are important in designing animations in CSS:

  1. Animation Timing

This property specifies how the animation speed will change. The following terms are used to describe this schedule:

  • Linear: constant speed
  • Ease-in: Smooth start
  • Ease-out: A quiet ending
  • Ease-in-out: Smooth start and finish
  1. Animation Delay

With this property, you can determine when the animation will start. For example, if you want the animation to start 2 seconds after the page loads, you can use this property.

  1. Animation Iteration Count

This property specifies the number of times the animation will play. For example, you can set an animation to play only once or to repeat continuously.

  1. Animation Direction

This property specifies the direction in which the animation will move.

  1. Animation Fill Mode

This property allows you to decide how the animation’s CSS properties behave during and after the animation runs. The four possible modes of this feature are:

Normal: In this mode, the CSS properties are applied only when the animation is playing.

Forwards: In this case, the values of the CSS properties remain until the animation is executed, and after the animation ends, the values of the last keyframe (the last step of the animation) are retained on the element.

Backward: In this case, the element receives and applies the values of the CSS properties from the initial keyframe (the first step of the animation) before starting the animation.

Both: In this case, the values of the CSS properties are applied both before the animation starts and after it ends.

  1. (Play State Animation)

This feature allows you to pause or resume animation. For example, if you want to stop an animation, you can use the “paused” mode.

Types of Animation in CSS

In CSS animation, it is possible to create different types of movements and effects that are dynamically displayed on website pages. In this section, some common types of animations in CSS are reviewed:

Fade In 1. (Appearance):

In this type of animation, the element appears slowly. For this purpose, the opacity property is used to determine the transparency of the element.

Fade Out 2.

In this type of animation, the element slowly disappears. For this, the value of the opacity property is changed from its initial value to zero.

Slide In/Out 3.

Using the transform and translate features, you can slide the elements to the left, right, up, or down.

  1. Rotate:

With the transform and rotation angle properties, you can rotate elements around their axis.

Scale 5. (zoom in/zoom out):

With the transform and scale feature, you can display elements in bigger or smaller forms.

  1. Bounce:

This type of animation makes elements jump repeatedly and at a slower speed. You can use keyframes to define jump steps.

  1. Pulse:

This type of animation causes elements to alternately grow and shrink. You can use keyframes to define pulse steps.

  1. Share:

By using keyframes, you can create vibrations in the desired elements.

Animation production tools in CSS

CSS Animation Generators are tools that allow programmers to easily create CSS animations without having to write complex code.

In these tools, it is enough to select the desired design and animation, the CSS codes related to that design will be generated automatically. The use of these tools helps to make the process of creating animation simpler and more efficient, and the duration of coding is reduced. Three popular and useful CSS animation production tools are:

  • Animist
  • CSS Animations Generator
  • Keyframes App


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