Review of Foundation Flash Cartoon Animation

Review of Foundation Flash Cartoon Animation
There are many books about cartoon animation in FlashR. What sets this book apart from the rest is the approach the authors have taken to make this book much more than just another step-by-step book about drawing and animating characters. Foundation Flash Cartoon Animation is for the animator who needs to stretch beyond the mechanics of the Flash tools and perfect the decision-making process necessary to become a productive animator. One of the biggest questions that is answered in this book is when to use Flash and how to use it most efficiently. The next question is what tasks are beyond Flash's capabilities and when to turn to another software such as After EffectsR.

The authors assume that the reader has a basic knowledge of Flash and the principles of animation. Because of this, you will find only a few step-by-step examples. What they do cover thoroughly is every phase of the production process for cartoon animation from planning, storyboards and animatics to post-production and delivery. The approach for this book is to examine working examples which can be downloaded from the publisher's website.

If you have ever created a complex character animation including lip synching and facial expressions, then you know that your character must be divided into a large number of individual animated parts. This is why the authors dedicate a whole chapter to organization and using the Flash library system to build character libraries. As you progress through the process from head comps and onward, the authors show when it is best to draw from scratch and when to use Flash symbols. Storyboards and animatics are next in the production process and the book covers several decisions that must be made such as choosing between traditional, hand-drawn storyboards and the digital method in Flash.

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