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Doughnut chart SVG Animation

For a recent project, I was asked to design an animation for a doughnut chart. The data could be dynamically editable by the content author, who could also choose how many animations to display on a given content area.

I started off by designing the assets in Adobe Illustrator. The design required a gray background with an overlay of a specific colour that would feature the main animation. To achieve this I layered 2 circles, one on top of the other.

To easily enable animating, these layers are SVG path elements. I’m cheating a bit by making the top layer a linear path, instead of a true circle, but GreenSock’s DrawSVG plugin works by animating the path, not the fill, of an SVG element.

The Setup

For the initial setup I grabbed the elements and a few values, wrapping these in a jQuery each() function to isolate them from sibling animations that were occurring on the same page:

  var values = $('.statistic');

  values.each(function () {

      var percentage = $(this).find('.figure__content .fig');
      var textcontent = percentage.text();
      var circle = $(this).find('.statcircle__animated');

As I already had jQuery as a dependency in this project I used the animate() function to handle the text, a number that would rise from 0 to the one specified by the user.

      Counter: textcontent
  }, {
      duration: 1000,
      easing: 'swing',
      step: function (now) {


By setting the prop value to 0 means that if JavaScript isn’t loaded in the browser, the percentage will still be visible to the user.

I’m still keen to make sure I provide a useable fallback just in case the user can’t access JavaScript on their connection.

The Chart

Then, using a Tween and Draw SVG I was able to find the path, and choose an appropriate animation for the effect.

 function initTweens() {
      // animate circle path using GSAP DrawSVG
      TweenMax.fromTo(circle, 1.5, {
          // animate!
          drawSVG: textcontent + "%"
      }); // tween

Using fromTo allows me to set the initial value to 0 then scale up to the value I grabbed from the percentage field.

I absolutely love the simplicity of DrawSVG, which meant no difficult calculations for me. I simply gave it a value and it calculated how it would draw path for me around almost 360 degrees. This gave me inherent robustness because GreenSock handles edge cases, and reduced development time greatly.

Final Result

For launch, I used Waypoints.js to specify that the animation shouldn’t start until the elements were in viewport. I then created the meta fields in the back end and tied them up to the page template.

You can see the final results in situ on, or on my CodePen below:

See the Pen Doughnut Chart SVG animation by Ben Read (@endymion1818) on CodePen.

“Design isn't just how it looks. Design is what it does.” —Steve Jobs