When compared with Stopframe animation (see Getting
started with animation), Keyframe animation offers a more
powerful and efficient animation technology
Intermediate steps between Key objects are created automatically and produce a smooth professional-looking inter-object transition (this is called Tweening); Tweened objects are created as a result. You won't see these intermediate steps showing tweened objects by default, but they exist transparently between key objects throughout your animation.
The Storyboard tab is the workspace for laying out your animation "story" in a chronological keyframe-by-keyframe sequence (from left to right). On export, your animation will play in this direction. Using the above "bee" animation in the tab illustration as an example, the bee is animated, while the sun and "Buzzzz" text remain static objects.
By adding objects (bee and sun) to a starting keyframe it's possible to automatically copy (or more correctly run forward) those objects forward when you create subsequent keyframes. This in itself doesn't affect animation, but it's the repositioning of a run forward object (such as the bee) in later keyframes that creates "movement."
Once keyframes are created, the animator has a great deal of control over how objects are run forward (or even backwards). You can introduce objects anywhere on the storyboard (so they appear for a limited time), and either run them forward or backwards by a specific number of keyframes (or right to the start or end of the storyboard). The "Buzzzz" text in the above example will only show from keyframes 3 onwards (i.e., from 4 seconds).
Keyframe animation mode also presents other tabs that support the Storyboard tab. These are exclusively used within keyframe animation (and do not show in normal or stopframe animation mode), i.e.
The Easing tab is used for applying linear or non-linear changes between key objects with use of editable envelopes (e.g., to change object position, morph, scale, rotation, skew, colour, and transparency).
The Actions tab allows objects and keyframes to be attributed actions which will run (e.g., go to a URL or designated marker) when an event is triggered (e.g., MouseOver, Rollovers, etc.).
DrawPlus provides a range of features for the more experienced user, i.e.
in response to object events or at a specific keyframe either via an easy-to-use
dialog or develop ActionScript
Use the Keyframe camera for panning, zooming and rotation effects over keyframes.
Masking lets you produce cutaways, i.e. punching through a layer(s) to reveal underlying objects.
Add and manage sound and movies to enhance your animation. Manage files from one central location with the Media tab, which also allows viewing and direct replacement of media.
Keyframe animations are created in a specific order:
Create your DrawPlus Animation file.
Create object(s), either static or for animation, on the page.
From the Storyboard tab, insert the number of keyframes and their duration via a dialog.
Reposition objects in subsequent keyframes to effect animation.
your keyframe animation as Adobe
Select Create>Keyframe Animation on the Startup Wizard.
From Page Setup, review document types in the left-hand pane.
Select a document type thumbnail
from a Web, Screen, or Mobile category in the left-hand pane
(Optional) In the Paper section at the right-hand of the dialog, swap your measurement units (e.g. to pixels), and change page size and/or orientation.
(Optional) In the lower Animation section, you can configure animation-specific settings.
Change the animation's Background Colour by clicking on the colour swatch.
Set Transparent Background to Yes, then any exported Flash SWF file will possess a transparent background (even if a background colour is set).
Increase/decrease the FPS, i.e. the frame rate setting (Frames Per Second).
Set the Flash Version for backward compatibility to a specific version of Flash Player. Newer versions offer greater compression in exported Flash files.
Set the Flash Bitmap Quality to a lower percentage setting to reduce Flash file sizes; this drops the resolution of placed bitmaps and any filter effects applied to objects.
You can convert your existing drawing to a keyframe animation by using File>Convert to Keyframe Animation.
To change page and animation settings, use Page Setup from the context toolbar (shown with Pointer or Rotate Tool selected) or File menu.
Unless the tab is already displayed, click the handle at the bottom of your workspace to reveal the tab.
We'll assume that you've drawn objects on the first keyframe. You can
run forward these automatically throughout your animation by creation
of additional keyframes
From the Storyboard tab, select a keyframe and choose Insert.
From the dialog, choose the Number of keyframes to add to the Storyboard tab. Set a default Keyframe duration for each created keyframe.
Choose to add keyframe(s) at a Location before or after the currently selected keyframe or before/after the first or last keyframe.
(Optional) Check Insert blank keyframes if you don't want to include run forward objects in your keyframes. Blank frames are useful "filler" frames that add breaks in your animation for messages, logos, etc.
An inserted frame will honour any animation runs that may transect it if the Insert blank keyframes setting remains unchecked (by creating an additional tweened object). If checked, the blank frame will break any transecting animation path(s) and not add tweened objects.
Once you've created a keyframe sequence you can sub-divide or split any selected keyframe further.
Click the Split keyframe button on the Storyboard tab.
From the dialog, enter the number of divisions that the keyframe is to be split into, then click OK. Each new keyframe's duration is an equal division of the original keyframe's duration.
Select a keyframe in the Storyboard tab.
Select the keyframe
and choose Delete.
- or -
Choose Delete Keyframe from the Edit menu.
Keyframe duration represents the amount of time in between each individual keyframe. The value is set according to how the keyframe was created, i.e.
A keyframe's duration can be altered manually at any time.
Click the keyframe's duration (e.g., 1500ms) under its thumbnail, and, when selected, type a new value then click away.
The total duration of your animation is shown on your last keyframe, e.g. (5.0s).
Storyboard control is possible by using a selection of buttons grouped together on the Storyboard tab (equivalent options are on the Storyboard menu). They operate across the entire storyboard, as opposed to on an individual keyframe or key object.
Breaks the animation run that transects through a selected keyframe into two separate runs.
A tool for tidying up your storyboard; any keyframes containing only tweened objects are removed from the storyboard.
Expands or shrinks the whole storyboard. All keyframe durations are automatically adjusted to fit proportionately to the new Scale duration.
To complement the visual effect of your keyframe animation it's possible to add audio. Sounds can be added either for the duration of a specific keyframe, or when an action is applied to an object event (see Applying actions for details on actions and events).
On the Storyboard tab, click
on the keyframe's Sound icon (located
below the frame's thumbnail).
- or -
Right-click the keyframe and select Background Sound....
- or -
Select Background Sound>Set Background Sound from the Insert menu.
From the dialog, navigate to your audio file, select it and click the Open button.
To remove a selected keyframe's audio clip, right-click and select Clear Background Sound.
As well as using sound in your keyframe animation, you can introduce movie clips. The movie is inserted into your chosen keyframe as an object which like any other object (QuickShape, Text, etc.) will need to be run forward for the movie to play throughout the animation.
DrawPlus supports various video formats including Flash Video (FLV), Flash SWF, AVI, WMV, and QuickTime.
Select the keyframe to which the movie is to be added.
Select Movie Clip... from the Insert menu.
From the dialog, navigate to your movie file and select it.
Position the displayed cursor where you want the movie to appear.
To insert the movie at
the movie's original size, simply click the mouse.
- or -
To set the size of the inserted movie, drag out a region and release the mouse button.
(Optional) Use the object toolbar controls to run forward/backward to the end/start of the storyboard (or by a set number of keyframes).
You can preview your animation at any time either in a web browser or in Flash Player (This is a DrawPlus install option). This is a quick way of checking it prior to export.
Click the down arrow on the button on the Storyboard tab, then choose to either:
In Browser.... The option displays a dialog which lets you preview
in your web browser either standalone or by loading a target HTML page
and associated SWF file (the target SWF file, e.g. a WebPlus banner, will
be replaced by the animation to be previewed). Check Preview
using existing HTML file for the latter, then navigate to and select
HTML and SWF files.
- or -
in Flash Player (default). Use the navigation controls to review
your animation as it would appear as an exported Flash SWF file. The animation
loads Flash Player (if installed) and begins playing in a Flash Preview
- or -
Select the same options from the File menu.