Thursday, August 23, 2012

Explanation of Sprite Sheets

This movie actually makes sense to me. It was a bit of a shock to learn that you can't use videos of your animations inside apps. You need to use a series of stills called sprites. So I make a little animation in Anime Studio pro, export it as a series of stills (.png files), making sure I check the box to export 1/2 the number of frames. Then these .pngs need to be imported into a software that will squeeze all the little images onto a single page called a sprite sheet because this way you use way less memory.

Phew! so much to learn - but it's fun once you get over the hump of knowing absolutely nothing. Patience with being in that frustrating period of initial ignorance and believing it will pass is the secret of learning.

This movie comes from the website for a software called Texture Packer.
SpriteSheets - TheMovie - Part 1 by Code'n'Web

gorgeous multi-platform publication

This breathtaking stop-motion video created by Isobel Knowles has spawned a print book and irresistible soft toys available on Etsy.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

12 books in 120 seconds

Another example of book trailer heaven.  The last Lemony Snicket book narrated by Mr Camp himself, Tim Curry

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Robot Media storybuilder

I have been trying out the truly lovely storybook app builder by Robot Media for the past few weeks. This team is out of Barcelona and have produced a clean, pleasing, relatively easy piece of software. No strings and publishable to various platforms. I'm besotted. 

The interface is lovely, beautifully organized, and easy on the eyes.  To use it you need to have all your images in png or jpg format. Storybuilder will tween your stack of pngs for animations. The previewer is instant and really lovely.

Cons so far are:
Nonexistent instructions. There are seven videos on their youtube channel which are not particularly high resolution,  have no narration and the same annoying theme music. They load slowly which makes it hard to scrub back and forth looking for the bit you want. So a tip is to copy the url of the video and paste it into so you can have the 7 video tutorials on your desktop. Studying these videos to learn how to use Storybuilder requires concentrated scrutiny, but I got there.

Functions I'm hoping they'll add:
1. animations can scale up
2. drag and drop into a container, e.g. flowers into a basket
3. being able to choose x,y coordinates of draggable objects.
4. draggable characters can flip horizontally if you drag them in the opposite direction like Nosy Crow's Cinderella.
5. addition of path animation
6. being able to add code for your own special interaction

Here's a little video demo of what I've done so far with my design of The King Has Goat Ears by Katarina Jovanovic and Philipe Beha, published by Tradewind books.