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Inna Trifonova

Animation techniques for a vector-styled graphics?

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Hello,

I'm relatively new to animation and really need someone’s advice. So my task is to make dozens of animations for a game. It will be some kind of magicians, I think vector-styled (like this one - http://ru.depositphotos.com/4634394/stock-illustration-Magician.html)
My question is what graphics software I should better use to draw and animate them? It is not necessarily should be vector-like graphics (it can be even 3d-like). The problem is that many of my characters will have cloaks, capes and other clothing on them that is not easy to animate. Should I draw every single frame or what is the most rational way (so I can cope with the task)?
I think the style of the game will be most likely determined by what is technically easier.

Thanks for any advice! (and sorry for my English:)

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Anything 2D will be predrawn frames. For example you can have animation for "falling" where his hands reach for the air, and the cloak is flapping over his head, this could consist of 3-4 frames, that you play in such an order that it makes it animate.

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The most labor-saving part of vector graphics is probably that you can easily copy one frame then edit the pieces that need to move to get the next frame - for example if you have a character walking to the side, you can make the leg two or three separate pieces and use the rotate command on each one to pivot animate it. But, some systems allow bone animation for vector art, that's a totally different technique and I haven't worked with a graphics program that does that, so I don't know whether it's easier or not.

One tip I have, that I learned the hard way - determine what sprite side you want, then draw a box (transparent but visible border) 8 or 12 pix bigger both height and length wise. This is your frame orientation box. You use it to export all your frames at a consistent size, and just trim the box part off to get your desired size. You can develop frames over top of each other like a lightbox or flipbook, and use the snap feature to line the orientation boxes (copy it for each frame) back up again if you have to separate them.

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