Principles of Animation For Flash

- November 6, 2009

In this post I will cover some important animation principles used to give life and interest to Flash animations.

1. Squash and Stretch
The classic example of this principle is a bouncing ball. When a ball bounces on the floor the shape of the ball is “squashed” because of the effect of gravity. To add a feeling of speed to the ball you can “stretch” it out while it is at its fastest key frame.

2. Anticipation
Anticipation is the act of preparing for action. Think of someone winding up for a pitch. To use this principle in Flash, simply drop your object back in the opposite direction for a few frames and add a slight pause, then let the action carry through.

3. Follow Through
Think of “follow through” as if a person just threw a ball and their arm is continuing to swing downward. The momentum of the swing carries the arm forward and down.

4. Easing In and Out
Easing is slowing in or slowing out of a movement. It can add grace and elegance to an animation, making it more believable by creating the illusion of weight and resistance.

5. Exaggeration
To give a larger-than-life feel to your animation, try exaggeration. Scale your objects on your extreme key frames to add punch. Animate some things larger or smaller than they normally would be. Be careful not overdo it or your animation will become overbearing and garish.

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