Why are text objects missing OR am I just blind

There appear to be no direct means at all of creating text objects in Animate or importing these into Animate via flash. I am happy to accept that somehow I just have not found this means, but ‘text’ hardly appears in the user manual, and never in the context I mean. I just do see a means.

Perhaps I have idiosyncratic needs in this age of audio-visual materials, but my primary use of Studio is to create explanatory animations to support my lectures as my contribution to better understanding and a Powerpoint free world. These always feature text … caption bubbles, headlines, quotes from key figures in a debate, illustrating derivations of sentences or equations or how variables are quantified in prolog etc. Text is often an actor, at least for we old fashioned academics.

My hope is that there is an easy solution that I have just not grasped.

For the moment I have a choice of going back to Studio 4.5 which works fine with text objects, or laboriously make all the text in painter or gimp and export it as images and import onto layers. It might be liveable if I could paste images directly onto drawings, but that also appears to be missing from Animate (as it is from Studio). I could export Animate as flash and import into Studio and finish up there, but technically I don’t have a licence anymore for Studio, and will be retiring mine if I decide to stick with Animate. This is further problematic since I will then no longer be able to work with earlier material since I can’t import it into Animate, even given the ‘workaround’ posted on this site.

I greatly appreciate what Animate can do that Studio cannot (at least not with a heck of a lot more effort), but the ommission of text objects, even if they were simple rendered bitmaps or vector drawings once created, just seems odd to me.

If you look at the product comparison page, text is not a feature in Animate.

If you have Illustrator, you can create text in there and import it.

The only text I can import is bitmap rendered text. I don’t have Illustrator (or any Adobe products anymore due to their diddling), but have tried this in Inkscape, exporting to both pdf and illustrator formats for import into Animator, translating text to paths. I can import text from neither, nor does the text elements of the swf files created in Studio import. So I can accept that for some reason there are no text tools in higher end animation products, it strikes me as bizarre that text is incompatible … its just vector strokes after all.


You might be able to import your text from Inkscape by breaking it into vector inside Inkscape. I am not sure if such command exist but it should be there.

Be aware that even though text is vector to some extent the software need to have an understanding of the font system to be able to display the text. This is why you usually need to break the link between the font and the text to wrote to be able to import it (to make sure it is right in Inkscape simply try to modify the shape of the letters, if it allows you this means the font is no longer taken in consideration).

Best regards,


In Illustrator, this would be the Create Outlines command… Type > Create Outlines

I’m guessing other vector illustration programs should have a similar option. I prefer to deal with outlines in order to take the font out of the equation, especially if you wind up handing the file off to someone else or will be opening it on a different computer.

Make sure to retain a copy of the original non-outlined version though (in your vector illustration program) in case you want to go back and edit the type.

I’ve decided that even TBS can’t do what I want to do with Text, so I’ve just made it a point to export my SWFs to Swishmax and do my text animation in there (which I prefer anyway). I’d suggest you export your swf to a 3rd party app that does nice texting effects.