I can’t figure out how to create new cells. I don’t want to have redraw the entire image, when all I want is to change the mouth movement. is there a way to do this? whats the easiest way to do this?
There are several approaches to achieving your desired animation.
Full Animation Approach
Select the cell you want to duplicate in the timeline, use the keyboard shortcut R to repeat this exposure. This will give you two frames in sequence containing your original cell.
Next move to the second frame of that pair of frames and right click to open the context menu and use the command Duplicate Drawing. This causes the currently selected cell to be converted into a new cell containing the same art as the original cell. You now have two unique cells in sequence in place of two frames of the same cell. You can now modify them independently. This technique is faster than the copy and paste technique and works great when you want to do straight ahead animating by duplicating a cell then making slight changes to the duplicate and then duplicating that cell and so on as you animate a sequence. Once you get use to this method you will want to set up a keyboard short cut for the Duplicate Drawing command to speed things up.
Limited Animation Approach
In the previous example you are replicating each cell on an element layer and modifying that cell. In this next example you will use two or more element layers. In the first element layer you will create and hold a cell for multiple frames. That cell will contain the part of your character that isn’t going to change during that sequence of frames. On a second layer you will overlay on top of your static character the cells that contain just the part or parts of the character that will be changing during the sequence.
For example just the characters mouth as he talks. The advantage of this approach is that you can reduce the amount of painting that is required because you are working with less complicated cells. You’re not repainting the entire character for each frame. NOTE: The repeat exposure and duplicate drawing technique described above also works well just for repeating and modifying the overlay cells in the Limited Animation example. Unless you are wanting to change significant amounts of the character on almost every frame the limited animation approach is a better alternative.
Hope this helps you out -JK