Drawing with Animate

by Ajay Shukla

posted on 06-17-2019

I am the product manager for Adobe Animate. As you would have noticed, we’ve been working on adding new platforms and capabilities to the product. The last few years have seen the addition of HTML5 Canvas, WebGL (glTF), and, more recently, Google AMP. We’ve added the much-needed capabilities of camera and layer depth, layer effects, asset warping, paint brushes, a new way of character rigging using layer parenting and much more. As we continue to focus on adding new platforms and capabilities, we’ve also been focusing on the stability of the product, and going forward there will be much more around the performance, stability, and, more importantly, the usability of the product. I thought this was a great time to engage with you, and I intend to do this through various mediums including blog posts. In any case, you are most welcome to drop me an email with your comments, suggestions, feedback, or just to say hello.

There’s so much to share with you. As I started to think about the topic for my first blog post, two things happened. Kyle Webster — yes, the creator of Photoshop’s Kyle’s brushes — dropped in a new video about how much he loves the drawing & sculpting capabilities of Animate.

When I looked at the videos available on Adobe.com, I noticed that one of the most popular videos was “Drawing in Animate” from the awesome animator and a great friend, Chris Georgenes. The same video is available on the Adobe Creative Cloud YouTube channel here:

And then I came across this gem:

The fact that drawing and sculpting in Animate are popular with both the professionals and the amateurs just represents the breadth of animators that find their creative freedom with the tool.

So here’s a rundown of some of the ways you can draw and sculpt in Animate.

1. Using the selection tool
a. Draw a line, pick up the selection tool, and then hover around the edge of the line. The cursor will change to something like the following:

b. Now click and drag the line.

You will notice that the line changes to a curve. This is very powerful if you want to draw that perfect curve.

2. Using primitive shapes
You can sculpt your character using primitive shapes. You can see Chris’s video above, but I will cover just one of the things he talks about.

a. Draw an oval with the oval tool.

b. Select the top half with the selection tool.

c. Hit the delete button and you have your mouth. No need to draw!

Here’s another one:

a. Create a semicircle as described above.

b. Make a selection using the selection tool and hit delete. You get a new shape.

c. Hover around the corner with the selection tool.

d. Click and drag. This moves the corner instead of creating a curve.

Those are just a couple of fun ways you can draw and sculpt in Animate. I’d be keen to hear about your unique experiences experimenting with Animate.

Please recommend any other topics you’d like us to deep dive on. Also, we will have an update on Animate brushes soon — stay tuned.

Topics: Creativity, Design

Products: Photoshop, Creative Cloud