The world of today is becoming more and more artificial after each passing sunset. Because of this, or perhaps in spite of it, even the videos and pictures that we see and watch are quickly being replaced by animations and computer-generated imagery. Although this means bad news for celebrities who made it big by pretending to be characters in movies and books, animation has opened up an entirely new industry for those with an artistic touch and a tech savvy mind. To facilitate such individuals, animation software has been created to make animations even easier to create and distribute. This article will list a number of these programs.
Pencil is a free and open source program that allows users to create 2-dimensional animations using multiple forms of graphics and illustrations. Pencil is basically a more advanced version of Paint and comes with a number of animation templates that the user can choose from in order to create seemingly advanced drawings and graphics. Pencil is available for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux and can be modified or distributed in any way that the user sees fit.
Anim8or is another free animation software that users can download and distribute as they wish. Anim8or is a work-in-progress software and does not compete very well with professional-grade animation software such as LightWave but it does provide users with a number of features that work together to create basic and entertaining 3-dimensional objects. The program includes a manual for the technical side of the software as well as several tutorials for creating 3-dimensional objects. Furthermore, Anim8or includes a forum for users to compare experiences and seek help.
Blender is another free and open source program for animation but it exceeds normal definitions of a free animation software. Blender is a 3-dimensional content creation suite that allows users to create advanced animations, cartoons, and graphics by using a number of built-in functions and features. Blender allows the user to model, shade, animate, and render images and can even make interactive 3D animations. Blender is currently teaming up with Sintel to create a fully animated film called Chaos and Evolutions using the same free software that is available to users.
CreaToon is not currently updating their software any further but the software itself is free to use as-is without technical support. CreaToon uses both bitmaps and vector graphics, includes real-time previews for editing, automatic in-betweening, and allows the user to choose his/her own graphical style. CreaToon is used for creating 2-dimensional animations and graphics and can even use hand-drawn sketches uploaded by the user to create a more realistic image.
Stop Motion Pro
Stop Motion Pro is an animation software that is used for creating advanced video animations. The software can run on Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 but requires a camera of some sort. Stop Motion Pro is based on the principles of stop motion which is when an object or drawing is incrementally changed so as to create the illusion of motion. Stop Motion Pro does this by working with the user’s camera to capture an object or scene one frame at a time. When all the frames are combined, an animation is created.
DAZ Studio is a free, professional-grade animation software that is used to create extremely realistic animations and graphics. DAZ Studio includes a wide assortment of tutorials, templates, images, characters, tools, features, and functions that all work together to create some of the best animations that exist. The software also connects users to online video tutorials and forum communities where users can join together to teach each other about 3-dimensional animations and graphics.