Recently in Software Category

Working with Animation

As you may have noticed lately I have been focusing on the software of animation. Unfortunately it has been a slow and unhappy process. I am a very hands-on person. So you put me behind a camera or let me play with claymation and i am all over that. But if you ask me to work on a computer and get everything to align and work together and you have put me in a whole new battle.

I have been pending the last week battling with different animation programs as well as movie editing programs, and have found myself running into walls. There comes a point when you have to stop trying to figure something out yourself and just hand it over to someone else to do it.

I decided to work on something else for a change. I have been working with another teacher who has experimented with Animation in his class. He was able to find all sorts of different animation software online that was free and pretty user friendly. The two that I thought were the most interesting had pre-made Characters.


At first I thought what is the point of teaching students animation if they do not draw and design their own characters. But as I have been teaching Middle school, I realized that creating characters is a skill set that may be way over their heads. With these programs would allow the students to play with the movement of characters they choose, and they add words and sound to it. The

This program is another Download. You can create your own characters, but you have the option of using the ones that they provide for you in the program. The characters have a bone structure on them that you can maneuver the limbs in any direction you want them in. As far as how you control the characters you design, I am still looking into that.

http://anime.smithmicro.com/index_pro.php

This is a program that you have to log into online. If you have ever seen a Gieko commercial where they brag about asking a terrible animated commercial in under 15 minutes, well I am pretty sure those commercials were made on this program. 


http://www.xtranormal.com/

Apple fix it center Adventure


As I wrote earlier, I was having trouble with my computer and its ability to download animation programs. So I decided to go to the local Apple fix it store. And learned a valuable lesson today. - If you have a problem with your computer and you have access to a computer assistance store, GET THEIR HELP!!!-


I went to the store and sat down with one of the tech guys, and it turns out he is a film major. So we started talking to me about the quirks and tricks of macs and iMovie. If you want the easy solution to all your problems, just get final cut and don't mess with iMovie. However we live in a world where we can't just drop $200 on a software program.

My computer is now to the point where it does not have enough ram or a brave enough operating system to handle a lot of the animation programs online. But if I wanted to downgrade to iMovie HD, I found a way that can happen.

If you have iMovie 8 or any of the newer iMovie programs, and you have tried to downgrade you may have come into trouble. The reason for this is because your computer sees the newer version and thinks "oh they already have the newer version I'm not going to download this old thing." So if you want to download iMovie HD, you will first need to uninstall your newer version of iMovie.

If you have a newer computer then Wikipedia "free animation editor" and it will give you a list of free downloads that you can work with.

I already have a few project started in iMovie so I have to finish those before I can uninstall. VERY IMPORTANT: Your movies in iMovie with not downgrade. If you try to open and work on your project in an older version of iMovie, it will not work.

This is only half of the information I was able to get from talking with the tech. So its amazing what you can learn from sitting down for a few hours with someone who knows how to work a computer.

Super simple free animation software

I wave been stumbling around iMovie, and have come to the conclusion that its attempts to be simplified, it has become complicated. So I went searching for a program that I though any student could use. That is when I found Pencil.

Pencil is a ridiculously simplified version of Tuneboom, it can work on any computer(not just Macs), and best of all its a free download! Hurray for free stuff!!!

I had to play around in it for a while in order to understand it, but it took very little time to understand. This would be a great project to let students just play around with to get used to using the technology, and then later you can add more complex exceptions and instruction.

Download link:
http://www.pencil-animation.org/index.php?id=Download

User manual:

http://pencil-animation.org/wiki/doku.php?id=en:users:manual:0.4.3b:index

Animation Software

You may may be thinking: How can I teach animation when I cant afford the the soft ware? Well there are free software options for animation out there. The link below is one of the Sites you can use to download free animation tools.


Anasazi stop motion animator

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