Everybody knows Pokemon, Popeye, Scooby Doo, Tom and Jerry, Flintstone, mickey mouse, bugs bunny. All these characters were a part of our childhood. And these characters were made by animation.
The animation is the process of making the illusion of motion and change. Animation can also be defined as an illusion of movement created by showing a series of still pictures in rapid succession. The animation is a process in which many things are integrated into the multimedia and gaming products — processes such as designing, drawing, making layouts and preparation of photographic sequences. Animation means exploiting still images, into something which looks to appear real and moving. The animation is the display of series of frames simultaneously. Animation can be as simple as making a gif to more complex animation like creating a character in a game.
The act of creating new art has been done for centuries such as drawing, painting, sculpting. Animation can be called as Modern Form of creating art. Animation lets artist or animator to explore the infinity of world in motion. This modern art form brings out the emotion and that feeling of existence through movement of a sequence of drawings, images. In animation, two objects are always related to each other.
Why is Animation Important?
Animation exists as something which is truly created by the artist and can be called as an artist-driven art form. Some of the greatest artists of the past hundred years have either worked in animation or have taken inspiration from animated art. An animation is an excellent form of communication. The animation does not have a fixed group of the audience; it is for the kids, it is for the old, it is for young people and also from grown-ups. Animation allows you to bring life to something which doesn’t exist in reality but in the brain. At times it becomes easier to related to animations than one can relate with actual humans. Animation is a powerful tool for sharing and promoting a variety of audiences and global issues. Right from educating young ones to discuss serious global issues like global warming, animations play an important part. Animation helps us in represent reality in a cartoon form, which makes it more impactful. The animation is a mixture of meaning, story, colors, creativity, and imagination.
So, let us get started and know about the software which helps in creating animated images and find which best free animation software available.
Pencil2D is a free open source software that helps you create two dimensional (2D) animation without much struggle. The pencil is easily the best free animation software for windows. Pencil lets you create traditional hand-drawn animation using both bitmap and vector graphics. Pencil2D is one of the simplest 2D hand-drawn animation programs available. Pencil works smoothly on Mac computers making it the best free animation software for Mac. Pencil2D is ideal for beginners, as the commands are easy to understand and use and also the interface of Pencil is simple. Pencil allows the user to make something in a single layer as well as a multilayer. Pencil allows the user to paint and sketch. Pencil allows you to create and manipulate your animations by using its own feature-rich editor. When you use Pencil, you can easily determine the animation frame rate, sounds, image importing and exporting. Pencil allows the user to export your animated work as an FLV video file or an SWF movie.
CreaToon is a user-friendly and simple software which allows you to create 2D animations which are in fashion and add several special effects to the same. CreaToon is definitely a great animator tool which is designed for making cartoons in general. The user interface of CreaToon will take you back to 14th century, but it still is able to do complex tasks very easily. CreaToon has two menus on either side of the screen which allows the quick access of the tools which is used by the user for creating an animated character. CreaToon can set custom frame rate, in addition to adjustable heights and width settings.
3. Animation Paper
Animation Paper is one of the best free animation software available to use. Animation Paper is used to making uncomplicated animations. Animation Paper has some powerful tools, which helps the user to create amazing animations even if you don’t know much about animation. Animation Paper’s interface is quite simple and user-friendly. Animation Paper is pretty easy to work with. Animation Paper delivers the best result if it is used on a widescreen monitor. Animation Paper also gives some suggestions while you are animating.
4. Synfig Studio
Synfig Studio is another open source software which works on all platforms – Windows, Mac and Linux. Synfig Studio is quite complicated and needs to be learned thoroughly to be an expert. Once you master its advanced grade feature, it will give amazing results. The interface of Synfig Studio is divided into four parts – tools window, editing window, navigator window, and parameters window. Once you get familiar with all the four parts, you will be able to create amazing and quality cartoons and animations. Synfig Studio is based on the vector and bitmap technique. Synfig Studio allows you to synchronize created animation with any sound of your choice as It has a full-featured audio editor.
Stykz is a free software which you can download and use it to create animations and import into other applications. Stykz works on all leading operating systems – Windows, Linux and Mac. Stykz offers plenty of handy tools which can be used to create wonderful animations. Stykz has a user-friendly interface. However, Stykz is limited to basic animations, when compared to other animation software. Stykz is great for any 2D animations which are simple and uses fewer tools. Stykz is famous for its stick figure animations. Stykz is the first cross-platform stick figure animation software which allows the user to develop, edit and preview your animation. Stykz allows you to work on each frame which results in perfect finishing.
Blender is an open-source 3D animation creation website. Blender is the best free animation software for 3D animation. Blender is used by many people from different fields for a different purpose. Blender supports 3D pipeline which includes modeling, rigging, animation, simulations, rendering, composition and motion tracking. Blender also offers video editing and game creation. Blender offers animations and VFX features which are better than any other free animation software.
7. Bryce Pro
Bryce is not like your traditional animation software; it is something which will help you to create your own terrestrial model. Bryce is user-friendly 3D landscaping and animation software. Bryce is free of cost and works on all the platform. Bryce allows you to add special features like wildlife, nature, human beings and many such things in your 3D Drawing. Along with this, Bryce also allows the user to make landscapes, stones, mountains, rocks, water, clouds and many more things which will make it more real.
8. Daz 3D Studio
Daz 3d is another powerful 3D animation software which is complete. Daz allows you to create small videos and animations that you want to create. Daz is user-friendly and also offers rich features and functionalities which is of great help when you animate. Daz studio is for amateurs as well as professionals. The design engine in Daz 3D is very fast which helps in getting the desired results very quickly. Daz 3D has a massive library that contains a pre-developed component which will help you to develop animations without any fuss.
Clara.io is a full-featured cloud-based 3D modeling, animation and rendering software tool that runs in your web browser. Clara.io does not require any plugins to function. Clara.io also has a great arrangement of polygonal modeling and skeletal animation, which boasts of a user base of over 80,000. Clara.io has a modern interface which allows the user to undo/redo, drag/drop and is responsive workflow. Clara.io is a cross-platform tool which works on almost all the browsers an operating system. Clara.io also allows the editing by multiple users simultaneously.
Terragen is a free program that you can download on the Windows platform. Terragen is the perfect software which allows you to create 3D animations and environments that you wish to create. Terragen allows you to import real-world data sets and create the most realistic visualizations possible. Terragen allows you to control weather, landscapes, rivers, sun, stars and everything else which you can think of. Terragen allows photo-realistic clouds and ozone simulations. Rendering in the latest version is twice as fast as the previous version of the programs.
In conclusion, we would like to say that in the world of computers, graphics software are used to create effects which help to express your imagination via animations. Animation brings fantasies to life. Animation can also be called as one powerful tool which can be used as a platform to share ideas and abstracts. Animation helps to explore and develop ideas to implement them in reality.
In this article, we have mentioned some software which can be used to create 2D / 3D animations on different platforms. We have mentioned some best free animation software that will help you to animate and create videos or games which you have always thought of. There are some very powerful tools with a lot of features which will help in giving the best results. Some of the software is providing a lot of features without asking for any price in return.