Animatplot is build on top of three main classes:

  • Animation
  • Block
  • Timeline

A Timeline holds the information and logic to actually control the timing of all animations.

A Block represents any “thing” that is to be animated.

An Animation is a composition of a list of blocks and a timeline. This class builds the final animation.


Animation(blocks[, timeline, fig]) The foundation of all animations.


Timeline(t[, units, fps, log]) An object to contain and control all of the time


Blocks handle the animation of different types of data. The following blocks are available in animatplot.blocks.

Data blocks

These blocks are built to animate data.

Line(*args[, ax, t_axis]) Animates a single line.
Quiver(X, Y, U, V[, ax, t_axis]) A block for animated quiver plots
Pcolormesh(*args[, ax, t_axis]) Animates a pcolormesh
Imshow(images[, ax, t_axis]) Animates a series of images
Scatter(x, y[, s, c, ax, t_axis]) Animates scatter plots

Graph Label Blocks

These blocks are for animating non-data features on an axis.

Title(text[, ax]) Animates an axes title.

Advanced Blocks

These blocks are for more advanced use. These allow you to write more custom animations.

Block([ax, t_axis]) A base class for blocks
Update(func, length[, fargs, ax]) For providing a custom update method
Nuke(func, length[, fargs, ax]) For when the other blocks just won’t do

Composition Blocks

These blocks are amalgamations of other blocks. These are actually functions that return lists of blocks.

vector_comp(X, Y, U, V[, skip, t_axis, …]) produces an animation of vector fields


The animations subpackage is an opinionated subpackage that contains a number of convenience functions for specific use cases. These functions wrap around different combinations of blocks.

In general, these functions will take some data to be animated, some parameters to tell animatplot what to do, then dictionaries of parameters to pass to the underlying blocks.


This subpackage is less API stable than the above (blocks/Animation/Timeline), and some of these functions may have different defaults.

This submodule contains the following functions.

vector_plot(X, Y, U, V, t[, skip, t_axis, …]) produces an animation of vector fields