Learn How to Animate SVG with JavaScript: Simple Guide

how to animate svg with javascript

Are you looking to enhance your web graphics skills? Look no further! In this guide, we will introduce you to the world of SVG animation and guide you through the process of animating SVG elements using JavaScript.

With the power of JavaScript, you can create visually stunning and dynamic animations for your web projects. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced web developer, this guide will provide you with all the tools you need to bring your SVG graphics to life.

Key Takeaways

  • Learn how to animate SVG elements using JavaScript.
  • Understand the basics of SVG animation and different animation techniques.
  • Explore popular SVG animation libraries and how to integrate them into your projects.
  • Discover how to animate SVG paths to create visually stunning effects.
  • Take your SVG animation skills to the next level with advanced techniques.

Understanding SVG Animation Basics

If you want to create captivating web graphics, understanding SVG animation is crucial. SVG, or Scalable Vector Graphics, is a powerful tool for creating high-quality graphical content that can be animated using JavaScript. In this section, we will explain the basics of SVG animation and provide examples of SVG animations to help you get started.

What is SVG Animation?

At its core, SVG animation is the process of adding motion to graphics created with Scalable Vector Graphics. The animation can be created using various techniques, including manipulating SVG attributes and using JavaScript to create dynamic animations.

SVG animation provides a way to add interactivity and engagement to web graphics, making them more visually appealing and interesting to viewers. With SVG animation, you can create animated icons, loading spinners, and even interactive games.

SVG Animation Examples

There are countless examples of SVG animations that you can use for inspiration or to learn from. Some examples of commonly used SVG animations include:

  • Animated icons
  • Progress bars
  • Infographics
  • 3D graphics
  • Interactive maps

SVG animations can be as simple or complex as you want. They can include basic transitions or complex animations that involve multiple elements and actions.

SVG Animation Tutorial

If you’re new to SVG animation, it can be overwhelming to get started. However, with the right resources and tutorials, you can quickly learn how to create stunning animations. Some key tips for getting started with SVG animation include:

  • Start with basic animations and gradually add complexity
  • Use online resources and tutorials to learn new techniques
  • Take inspiration from other SVG animations
  • Experiment with different SVG attributes and JavaScript animation techniques
  • Test your animations in different browsers to ensure compatibility

By following these tips and investing time and effort, you can master the art of SVG animation and create stunning graphics for your website or project.

Using JavaScript for SVG Animation

Now that you have a good grasp of the fundamental concepts of SVG animation, it’s time to dive into animating SVG elements using JavaScript. JavaScript is a powerful tool that can create dynamic animations by manipulating SVG attributes and properties.

There are two ways of using JavaScript to animate SVG:

  1. Manipulating SVG attributes directly, such as the cx, cy, or r attribute of a circle element.
  2. Using JavaScript libraries, such as GreenSock and Snap.svg, which provide additional functionality and can simplify the process of creating complex animations.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these methods.

Manipulating SVG Attributes with JavaScript

By manipulating the attributes and properties of SVG elements with JavaScript, we can create dynamic animations that respond to user interactions or changes in the web page’s state.

For example, to animate the cx attribute of a circle element, we can use the following code:

// Retrieve the circle element

var circle = document.getElementById("myCircle");

// Animate the cx attribute from 0 to 100 over 1 second


targets: circle,

cx: [0, 100],

duration: 1000


In this example, we are using the popular anime.js library to animate the cx attribute of a circle element. The targets property specifies which element to animate, while the cx property defines the start and end values of the animation. Finally, the duration property specifies how long the animation should last.

Using JavaScript Libraries for SVG Animation

JavaScript libraries, such as GreenSock and Snap.svg, provide additional functionality and can simplify the process of animating SVG elements.

For example, with GreenSock, we can animate multiple attributes and properties of an SVG element at once, with more complex easing and timing functions:

// Retrieve the circle element

var circle = document.getElementById("myCircle");

// Animate the cx attribute from 0 to 100, and the opacity from 1 to 0, over 1 second

gsap.to(circle, {

duration: 1,

ease: "elastic.out(1, 0.3)",

attr: { cx: 100 },

opacity: 0


In this example, we are using GreenSock to animate both the cx attribute and the opacity property of a circle element. The duration and ease properties define the length and easing of the animation, while the attr and opacity properties specify the start and end values of the animation.

Using JavaScript libraries can make the process of creating complex animations much easier and faster. However, it’s important to choose the right library for your needs and ensure that it’s compatible with your project’s requirements.

Exploring SVG Animation Libraries

Using JavaScript to animate SVG elements can be a complex and time-consuming process. Fortunately, there are several libraries available that can streamline the process and provide additional functionality.

One popular library is GreenSock Animation Platform (GSAP). GSAP provides a robust set of tools for animating SVG elements, including powerful easing options and support for audio and video syncing. Additionally, GSAP offers a plugin called MorphSVG that allows for seamless morphing animations.

Another option is Snap.svg, a lightweight library that offers a simpler API for animating SVG elements. Snap.svg provides a comprehensive set of methods for managing SVG elements and attributes, making it an ideal choice for small projects or those with limited animation needs.

For developers who prefer a more declarative approach to animation, Anime.js offers a flexible and intuitive library. Anime.js supports a wide range of animation properties and provides a simple syntax for defining keyframes.

Regardless of which library you choose, integrating it into your project is typically straightforward. Most libraries can be installed via package managers like NPM or Yarn, or by including a script tag in your HTML file.

Overall, using an SVG animation library can save you time and effort while providing greater flexibility and functionality in your animations. Consider exploring these options to take your SVG animations to the next level.

Animating SVG Paths with JavaScript

SVG paths provide endless possibilities for creating dynamic and visually stunning animations. With JavaScript, you can easily manipulate the path’s attributes to achieve your desired effects. Let’s take a look at the code below to see how you can animate an SVG path using JavaScript:

// Select the path element using document.querySelector()

let path = document.querySelector(‘#my-path’);

// Define the path’s starting and ending values

let startVal = path.getAttribute(‘d’);

let endVal = ‘M200, 200 L400, 400’;

// Create a new Animation object using the animatePath() function

let anim = new Animation(path, animatePath, 1000);

// Define the animatePath() function to interpolate the path’s values over time

function animatePath(val) {

let d = interpolate(startVal, endVal, val);

path.setAttribute(‘d’, d);


// Call the play() function to start the animation


This code creates a new Animation object and calls the animatePath() function to interpolate the path’s values over time. As the animation progresses, the path’s d attribute is updated to create the desired effect.

Animating SVG paths with JavaScript requires a solid understanding of SVG path commands and functions. Make sure to check out some tutorials and examples to get started. With a little practice, you’ll be able to create stunning animations that will take your web graphics to the next level!

Advanced SVG Animation Techniques

Now that you’ve mastered the basics of SVG animation and have explored ways to animate SVG elements with JavaScript, it’s time to take your skills to the next level with advanced animation techniques.

SVG Filters

SVG filters provide a way to apply visual effects to SVG elements. With filters, you can create stunning effects such as blurs, glows, and color adjustments. By combining filters with animation, you can create dynamic and visually impressive graphics.


Masking is a technique in which you hide or reveal parts of an SVG element using a mask. By animating the mask, you can create interesting effects such as revealing hidden elements or transitioning between two graphics.

Blending Modes

Blending modes are a way to combine two or more SVG elements using mathematical formulas. By experimenting with different blending modes, you can create unique and visually striking graphics.

Clip Paths

Clip paths are a way to mask an SVG element by defining a specific shape. By animating the shape of the clip path, you can create animations that reveal or hide parts of an SVG element.

By mastering these advanced SVG animation techniques, you can take your web graphics to new heights and create stunning visual experiences.


By following this guide, you have gained a solid understanding of the basics of SVG animation and learned how to animate SVG elements using JavaScript. You have also explored advanced techniques and discovered popular SVG animation libraries that can simplify the process and offer additional functionality.

Apply Your Newfound Knowledge

Now that you have mastered the art of animating SVG with JavaScript, it’s time to put your skills to the test and create visually stunning web graphics. Whether you’re designing a website, developing a game, or creating an interactive infographic, SVG animation can help bring your ideas to life.

Remember to experiment with different animation techniques and explore the many possibilities that SVG has to offer. With continued practice and experimentation, you can become a skilled SVG animator and create captivating visual experiences that engage your audience.

Thank you for reading this guide and we hope it has been a valuable resource in enhancing your web graphics skills. Happy animating!

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