First impression of Animate...

I just built my first character in Animate, and I fought hard with Animate’s drawing tools. Here is a list of things that made me fight with it.

1. For some reason the Undo wouldn’t undo.

2. Everytime I go into the color wheel, Animate crashes

3. I found the drawing tools very difficult to use, but I am new to them so I will see if I learn some more.

4. When you insert your characters layers into a Master Peg everything seems to get all screwed up. The eyes are under the head, hair under the head, ect, and there always seems to be a Bone that cannot be Excluded from the IK. Although, I got it to finally disappear when I selected the Master Peg layer and hit Exclude from IK, not sure if that is the right thing to do, BUT it worked.

5. My biggest wrestling came when trying to use the paint bucket to fill something that is closed. The thing just does not like filling, even when you select- close large, medium, small gaps. I tried the close gap tool but I would end up having to fill things with the brush tool. VERY FRUSTRATING

Overall it was fun, but I deffinately want to see easier drawing tools to work with. Specially the Contour Editor, or an easier way to edit paths and delete/add Anchors.

right now I am animating the character and I cannot believe how fast I am going. This is certainly the reason for the HYPE. The Animation part ROCKS!

Problems 1 & 2 clearly shouldn’t be happening and don’t happen for me.

3 I find them fine, but i just use a mouse. I think they are reasonably good for my use.

Point 5, remember to make sure the paint setting is righr (like your not using paint unpainted to paint something painted) but also if you zoom in before painting it works way better than zoomed out. I have no idea why this is the case, but i always zoom when painting now because of this.

adding and deleting points is easy. Just select and press delete to get rid of a point and ctrl + click on link to add a point. I don’t think it could be much easier than that. That said i wish they would add a feature to fuse 2 points togther which currently you can’t do.

It is a lot of work setting up your character, but the hope is once setup you can work fast with it.

Hey thanks for the tips, I am going to try the things you mentioned. I should probably read the Pdf that came with Animate but when I downloaded the program I just wanted to jump right in.

I am also curious how everyone is handling setting up there Lip Sync with the character’s jaw which needs to move on O’s and ah’s? Mouths inside the head? or drawing substitutions for a seperate head symbol?

In that case i recommed you download the kickstart videos and watch them as they go over most of the basics and lots of tricks.

They are fairly quick and won’t take you long to watch them all.

I’ve watched those Quick start videos about a hundred times. I don’t think they are much help. The Lip Sync part does not really show you how to set up the Lips Sync it just shows you how to do it once it is set up. I will figure it out though, I think that is part of the fun. ::slight_smile:

I agree. The animating part is fantastic. There are plenty of missteps along the way (as in setting up a character wrong on the timeline makes one big mess when a camera gets added) but I’m happy to consider it part of the learning.

I am also not being happy about the drawing tools, though, and so I’m agreeing twice. I’m accustomed to the tools in Flash, so I’ve been willing to get used to these, but I just finished a pretty frustrating afternoon. (Aren’t those the worst?)

I’m a brush user. It seems ridiculous to use the pen tool, convert to lines and then manipulate them into various widths.

So. Anyone come up with any good settings that make the tools more fluid? So far, the contour editor is so painfully slow. I’d love it if it just NUDGE the darn line.

Anyway. That’s my whining for the day. :slight_smile:

I’m an Illustrator / animator with 10 years experience in the advertising industry. Well versed with Pshop, Illustrator, Flash, AFX, etc. I use Toonboom because the toolset is out of this world!!! The brush tool far exceeds what flash is capable of, but the whole package takes quite a lot of getting used to. I just upgraded from Digital Pro to Animate Pro, and I notice you can now select standard Flash Keyboard shortcuts which should make the transition easier, but you need to get out of the Flash mindset really. In a way, it’s like learning to walk all over again, but it’s well worth it. And you NEED a good Wacom… This is very capable software and you wont get the best out of it using a mouse. Keep playing with the tools… Once you’ve got them cracked, you’ll never go back to Flash!!

Well the main part I am having a huge problem with is importing swfs from flash 8 into animate library, it’s won’t show up at all. I do the right click things on the animate folder and import like it says and it seems like it is loading it in and then KABOOM nothing is in the library ???. Someone said try publishing my swf out to 5 player but that still did nothing. This is very confusing. I have been using flash 8 for years and I would rather draw in it and import the swf into animate and just use animate for animating because I do not like the way the drawing tools work, I am so use to drawing with my mouse in flash. I can created everything with a square and manipulate it really well, something you cant do in animate. Most peoples drawings/animations I have seen so far looks like a 3rd grader drew them, it’s aweful and it makes the eyes bleed :o. My drawings are amazing and very polished in flash but I don’t think I can do that in animate :(.

you can use the box technique in toonboom really easily.

Just create the box and you use the Ctrl key to add points as your manipulating in with the contour editor. I often do this. Check out the simple drawing a butterfly tutorial with animate to see how easy it is.

There is no reason you can’t do something as good/better in animate as you can in flash.

Thanks so much for the tip. I guess it’s just that I’ve been using flash 8 for so long I am so use to manipulating the box and ovals with the selection tool, but if I have do this in animate I would be so happy. Does it take a long time to get use to drawing in animate? I was drawing in flash really good in about a week ;D

You definitely have to get out of the Flash mindset - or you’ll just be needlessly frustrated. ToonBoom is WAY more capable than Flash - and as a result requires more time to learn. It’s the equivalent of being good at driving a car and then expecting to be able to fly a plane after a week of playing about with the controls…

you don’t really have ‘drawing tools’ in flash, but ‘drawing manipulation tools’.
when you really draw, in a good old manual/traditional method, the drawing tools in animate are ‘WAY better’ than those in flash.

Absolutely, Rob…

I also don’t think there’s a real competition between TB & Flash in the sense that they both fit a different niche that happens to cross paths in certain areas. Flash is amazing for web based stuff with great scripting / interactivity capability, and you can quite happily make nice traditional animation stuff with it too within the bounds of it’s capabilities - but I wouldn’t want to try and make a movie like Belleville Rendezvous or The Simpsons with it…

We are intitled to our opinions, but I still think that the “manipulation” tools are better in flash. Call them what you want they are better IMO.

Having said that I just started playing with Animate and had such a tough time with the drawing tools that I am afraid to mess with them again, to avoid the frustration I felt from the first time. Frankly thinking of a way to sell my license. There are no GOOD tutorials to learn the most basic things.

Yeah I think Toon Boom Animate is probably really good if you got months and months to learn it but for us animators running a business full time and as that being the bread winner business for us and puts food on the table and pays the bills I just don’t know, I don’t have 6 months to learn a new program thats why I was going to draw everything in flash and import it into Toon Boom Animate but it won’t let me import the swf at all. Everytime I try it loads it but never apperars in the library at all. Coming from a flash background for the last 5 years you basically have to rewire and reprogram your mind, you have to wipe the hard rive of your brain when you go into Toon Boom. I am just so use to drawing in flash. I do very high quality animations in about a week that would take most people 3 months. I can create a whole character in about an hour. I can work that damn thing with my eyes closed and one had behind my back. Also I don’t like those tablets at all, drawing with them sucks doggies balls. I love to draw with my mouse, it is fast and easy but it seemes really hard to draw with a mouse in Too Boom Animate. I have seen a couple of amazing things done in toon boom but most looked like 3rd grade stuff. I do have to say that I have seen some freaking sweet stuff done with Macromedia/Adobe flash 8 and CS4. Just check this animation out from Jurgen Frey, his animations are done all in flash 8 and they are amazing and brilliant:

We are intitled to our opinions, but I still think that the “manipulation” tools are better in flash. Call them what you want they are better IMO.

that’s what i meant: manipulation. here is flash better.
btw, can you please show us how is the way of your drawing?
mine is here:

and there’s NO WAY i can draw in flash like this, even without a watercolor effect for the india ink job, i.e. only outlines which i use for my animations.

when it comes to the flash examples i prefer smoother motions, like those in works of arthur de pins:

or in those of the master of flash, adam phillips:


Chill guys - this ain’t worth getting stressed out about!!! It’s starting to sound like the age old Windows ‘Vs’ mac thing!!!:stuck_out_tongue:

Flash is a fantastic tool - I use it a lot. I started with MX2004 and I now use CS4. Toon Boom is an equally fantastic tool that suits me really well as an animator from an illustration background. Both are very different. Both have their pros & cons and will work better for some than others. Toon Boom definitely takes longer to learn and is more ‘buggy’ which can be annoying, but in my opinion is worth all the hassle as the results for someone with a more naturalistic style like me are better than I can achieve in Flash.

Keep going Matador - it will click for you soon. Trust me!

Keep asking the questions here man - there are plenty of helpful people who’ll do what they can to get you going!!! Just think of this as a blip…


Just a suggestion… You might want to actually read the help file. There is a lot of useful information in there, and if you start from the beginning and work through it, by the time you get to the end, you’ll feel really comfortable with the software. That’s how I taught myself. I know it takes some patience, but it should only take you a few days to go through it, and it will probably be a lot less frustrating than just diving right in with the software.

If the software is really too heavy for you, then you could always consider Studio as a lighter option. It doesn’t have some of the tools that Animate does, but it is more lightweight. Toon Boom definitely tries to make all kinds of different softwares, from extremely lightweight to the more professional Animate.

Amen, lillyV. Thank you for commenting. Prior to buying a toon boom protect or any other I have learned through my own mistakes to download a manual or something, just to see if this software can do what I want. What is it I want to do and can this product pull through.

Before laying down the money for Toon Boom, I read every thread, every problem and all the delights of other users on this forum. I was certain that I could work through any problems that may come up using it. I had used the PLE like it was my last breath.

There is not much as far as learning material goes, but I found that the User Guide and the Kick Starts are really helpfull and if one takes their time and go through it, you will be breazing through a production in no time.

Combine your talent with your Toon Boom product and things will be fine.