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Flash Frame-By-Frame Animation: Keyframe and In-Between Basics


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Animation Basics: Getting Started
Flash Frame-By-Frame Animation: Keyframe and In-Between Basics
Flash is a fun tool for quick and easy automated animation, allowing you to create shapes and then move them about without having to draw every frame of the animation. But you can also animate in the traditional style--drawing every frame of animation, describing motion frame by frame in exquisite detail. Flash lets you mimic cel-style animation, but with so much more freedom; no more light tables, no more plastic sheets, pencils, inks, flip books, paints, cameras. It's all in the code--brushes in binary, sketches in subroutines.

But in order to accomplish this, you still need to understand the principles of animation and how to use those basics in Flash. So for this lesson, we're going to learn how to choose keyframe points and a few techniques for in-betweening.

Although as we get deeper into these lessons we're going to discuss how to draw complex motion and detailed shapes, for this lesson we'll stay simple: a bouncing ball against a backdrop of a single horizon line. Create a new document with a frame rate of 12 and a 320w x240h size (4:3 aspect ratio) ; that's more than enough for web animation, though typical TV animation uses a 15 fps (4:3 ratio) with repeated frames, and film animation uses 30 (16:9 ratio).

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