Here’s an animation doodle I did during Thanksgiving. I decided to try out the animation features of Autodesk’s SketchBook Pro 7, which I got the week before while I was at CTN.
I wanted to try out the animation features added in SBP7, since I liked how the brushes worked in SBP6, but I was disappointed to find out how limited it actually is - you get only two real layers to animate on, and a third layer for a single background drawing. Keyframes are also not layer-independent like they are in higher-end animation software like Flash or Toon Boom. You basically get enough layers for a single character’s rough and clean animation. The onion skinning is also hard to read, if you’re a light sketcher like I am.
Another big issue I have is that the program only lets you export your “flip book” as a PNG sequence. You need a separate program to compile it into an animated GIF or video format.
While I wouldn’t use this program for any serious animation production, it is a great program for students who want to do short pencil tests (I am sure it’s possible to get TVPaint-quality stuff out of it, if you’re crafty and very patient), but can’t afford to spend hundreds of dollars on the bigger suites. I think it was only about $30 for a one-year license. You will need to find a GIF or video-editing program to show your animations outside of the program. I’m sure there are free options, but I haven’t needed to find one in years.