Step by Step: Xoana Herrera and Esteban Esquivo

In the world of animation, collaboration is quite common. Online we are constantly seeing new dynamic duos, collectives, and group films make their rounds. After all, animation is a collaborative medium. So what better than to team up with someone whose skillset complements your own? What’s less common is these collaborations forming between husband and wife. There are a few names that pop up when I think of the power couple, husband and wife creative duos, but few that can hold a flame to Xoana Herrera and Esteban Esquivo.

Xoana is an unbelievably talented illustrator, designer, and art director, and Esteban is one of the best animators around, capable of tackling any task whether it be 2D, 3D, or any combination thereof. The rest is history and we are thrilled to have these two contribute to our Step by Step series.

This month’s Step by Step, we get an inside look at Esteban’s animation as he brings to life a wonderful illustration by Xoana. You can view part 01 above and part 02 below.



If you would like to be involved or request an artist for a Step by Step feature, please email us at:

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About the author

Joe Donaldson

Joe Donaldson is a director, designer, and animator who worked on Motionograpgher from 2014-2020. Previously, he was an art director at Buck. Over the past decade, he's lived and worked in Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles and has directed work for clients such as Apple, Google, Instagram, The New York Times, Unicef, Etsy, and The New Yorker. In addition to his creative work, in 2018 he started Holdframe. He's now working as a professor at Ringling College of Art and Design and when not teaching he can be found spending time with his family or out running.


Harrison Simmonds

Really interesting to watch the workflow for such a fantastic piece of animation. As with most digital animation platforms – the way people interact with the software is often very unique and subjective.

Beautiful piece. Thanks for sharing.



Eric Kreidler

This is very cool. Not sure if they’d go for this, but having the source file would add so much to studying this.


Thank you for taking the time to showcase the behind-the-scenes of such an extraordinary scene. Both the illustrations and the final animation is top notch and I’m thrilled I came across this and both Xoana’s and Esteban’s website. Keep up the excellent work!

Sunny Pillai

thank you for this tutorial got to learn a lot from it

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