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Easy Steps and Tips on How to Make 2D Animation

Animation is here and there, commonplace in movies, cartoons, and the Web. You can see multiple 2D and 3D animation projects and characters anywhere, so it’s still too early to say that 2D animation is less popular or less common than 3D. 2D artists enjoy a great demand in the labor market, so no matter whether you want to make some DIY 2D animation for your own use or seriously consider starting a career in this area, this article will be of high value for you, as it lays out the first steps of 2D animation creation.

Where to Start if You Have no 2D Animation Experience?

Crafting some 2D animation is not an easy task to complete for a person with no practical experience and theoretical knowledge in the field, even if you are creative enough to do visual art. The basic skill set with which you should start includes some hand drawing mastery and knowledge of basic 2D animation techniques. It’s also desirable that you buy some more or less serious hand-drawing equipment and train for some time before proceeding to creation of your 2D animation in software.

How to Make 2D Animation?

The question ‘how to make 2D animation’ can hardly be answered in one way, as you may make animation by hand, or use some kind of software, and the processes will be different. Here are the basics.

Hand-drawn 2D Animation

This approach takes much more time and effort than computerized 2D animation does, but it still possesses the charm and magic of old-school animation studios. So, many people actually continue doing animation this way, both for pleasure and for commercial purposes. To make an animation piece, take a much paper and pencils/markers/crayons. Draw an image, capture the frame, and then draw it again with tiny changes to capture a new frame. You can also make characters of clay; in this case, you won’t need to redraw your image every time to capture another frame, only needing to move the character or its part.

2D Animation with Software (on the Example of Adobe)

When you work on 2D animation in software, the process looks quite different. The process looks as follows:
●     You first set the animation stage by creating a new document and adding some vector image from Adobe Stock as your animation background.
●    Afterwards, you should add layers and tailor your background with specialized Adobe tools so that it suits your intended design.
●     Add another layer for the character and import it from Illustrator CC – it should already be drawn. Make sure you separate the layers before starting the animation so that the character changes and background remains the same.
●   For character animation, use looping animation to its different parts. This is possible once you master frames, keyframes, motion tweens, and shape tweens – key concepts of Adobe animation.
●     Next, create the main timeline animation for your character and make sure its path is well-fitted.
●     Congrats! Your 2D animation is ready for exporting for further use.
And finally, if you wish to create some 2D animation piece but don’t have any knowledge in the field (and have no time and desire to learn), there’s still a way. You can always do some stop-motion with photos or create some simple flip book animation. To create the former, you may simply make a series of photos and then make a video with all of them stitched together. Another approach is vice versa, to make a video and then to make a series of snapshots from it to create a fake stop-motion effect. to create the flip book animation piece, just draw a series of images slightly different from each other, and record the sequence in some way, or simply enjoy the animation by flipping your book.

Which Software to Choose?

At present, there are several dozens of software offers in the market, and a beginner may find it hard to select the best program for his/her 2D animation work. How to choose wisely and not to waste money on expensive but useless software packages? Here are some tips:
●     Choose some free software first (e.g., Flipnote Studio, Pivot Stickfigure Animator, Autodesk Animator Pro, etc.). You will have a chance to polish your skills and deepen your knowledge with simpler software first and purchase more sophisticated software once your projects grow complex.
●     Even when buying some software, select the one offering a free trial (e.g., Adobe Animate, Adobe After Effects, Antics 2D Animation, DigiCel FlipBook, etc.). Such programs usually cost a pretty penny, so you need to be sure first that it is the one you really need, and it has all tools and functions you are looking for.

Wishing to know more about how to make 2D animation? Check at, here you will find both valuable information and expert advice and assistance in all matters related to 2D animation.

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