Two Freeware Programs For Making Simple 2D Animations
2.) Windows Movie Maker
These are two programs which I rely on very heavily. So I thought I’d share. Both of these programs are 100% free. If you have a newer Windows based computer you may already have Movie Maker installed:
For Paint.NET visit www.getpaint.net/index.html
After you’ve installed both, start by opening up Paint.NET. Go to the ‘image’ tab and select resize. Set to 1280 x 720. You can it to whatever you want, but for proper video format that size will be ideal.
This is really simple. You’re just going to create a series of panels that the Movie Maker is going to run through creating the animated sequence. It can be whatever you want. For sake of example I’m going to make a simple walk cycle. But the limit is your imagination as long as you have patience for drawing frames.
All your toolbars are right here in front of you. Select a brush and start messing around.
I’ll show you a simple walking cycle. I’ll skip the arms for time’s sake.
Once you have your completed frames, open Windows Movie Maker and import like this. You’ll have to edit down the individual frames to the speed you want the sequence to movie in. And finally, it looks something like this. It’s not perfect but you get the idea.
If you keep tinkering with it, you can get the transitions to look a lot smoother than this. I obviously rushed this so you could grasp how it’s done.
Once your done you can even add vocals or audio directly from Windows Movie Maker. And you’ve essentially created your own cartoon. Of course there are much more intricate programs out there for making studio quality animation, but this is free. It’s an easy way that’s also fun to get you introduced to basic animation ideas. And if you decide to give up on it later, it didn’t cost you anything! So why not give it a try? PEACE.
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