If you’re anything like me, you might crave some alone time away from the family this Thanksgiving holiday (or you may just want to skip out on helping with the dishes). Here are some fun ways to occupy your time, allowing you to create your own animations, on your computer or smart phone.
Scratch is a programming language developed by MIT “that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art — and share your creations on the web.” It’s free to join and share things. Once you create a Scratch project, people can interact with it or download and remix it. For example, someone has made a calculator using Scratch! You can also make games to play – there’s a gallery here. And if you get stuck, there’s a Support page and Forums.
Unfortunately, this is only available as a Nintendo DSi program, but you can also browse and watch the Flipnotes that others have created using their DSi. Since the program is available worldwide, there are many international Flipnotes, and it could be a fun way to practice your Japanese!
For those of you who took our Quick Flix workshops, taught by awesome people from Pittsburgh Filmmakers, I have some free Stopmotion and other animation programs! These require some downloads and tutorials, but could take your filmmaking to the next level.
This has how-to videos, a newsletter, video interviews with animators and free motion capture software for download. It was created by animator Mark Spess, who taught himself to do stop-motion and thought there should be a place online for fellow animators to learn and share their craft.
This software is based on the Anasazi software from the Animate Clay website, and can work with a built in PC camera or digital camera connected to your PC.
This is free 2-D animation software, “designed as powerful industrial-strength solution for creating film-quality animation using a vector and bitmap artwork. It eliminates the need to create animation frame-by frame, allowing you to produce 2D animation of a higher quality with fewer people and resources.”
Unlike many of these programs, Pencil works with Macs as well as PCs, and can be used for traditional hand-drawn animation. Here’s an example of something made with Pencil:
Blender can do 3-D rendering and is free and open source for all operating systems. The effects in this movie were made using Blender:
Before you start out on your journey, you can always use your local library to do some basic research on making animation!
– Tessa, CLP – East Liberty
Filed under: Quick Flix, Technology, Teen Interest, Videos | Tagged: animation, computer program, download, film, filmmaking, free, moviemaking, open source, Pittsburgh Filmmakers, stopmotion, vector | Leave a comment »