Budding animators don’t always have to pay hundreds of dollars to get the software they need to practice their skills. The Internet and open source communities have given us some excellent 2D animations software. Not only are these completely free to download, but they are often powerful enough to be used by professional animators!
We tested many 2D Animations Software and listed them so that you can choose the best one for you, we hope it can help you. Let’s continue with the Top 6 best 2D animation software that you can use.
01. Pencil 2D
The excellent 2D Pencil is free and open source , which doesn’t always mean good things in a market where paid animation software costs hundreds of dollars. Although 2D Pen is priceless, it is quite a powerful software for vector and bitmap animation .
Pencil 2D will allow you to create your compositions in color, with pencil, pen and brush tools. The design is quite minimalist and intuitive. Anyone who has a bit of experience using animation software, even the most novice, will be able to tell at a glance what they can do with the software. The tool features layers, a timeline with an easy keyframe manipulation system, onion peeling, colors, pressure sensitivity, and toolbars and workspace panels that can be rearranged to suit.
02. Plastic Animation Paper (PAP 4.0)
PAP 4.0, as we affectionately call Plastic Animation Paper, is probably one of the best free 2D hand-drawn animation tools to download for Windows . It’s an indie project of animators who love their craft, though sadly their other work in progress, Animation Paper, has yet to see the light of day.
PAP 4.0 will remind you of traditional light table animation, complete with onion peeling, light settings, layers, and blue and red pens for planning and drawing poses and scenes. The app’s design is simple and uncomplicated, but it’s packed with features for traditional animation . For many, it will be worth taking the tutorials on the website.
When you’re familiar with the many small icons (placed in well-designed, minimalist windows around the workspace) and their capabilities, you’ll find that there’s a lot you can do with PAP 4.0. The app is compatible with your pressure-sensitive Wacom pen, and has intuitive built-in shortcuts for zooming, rotating, toggling between draw and erase modes, and other little conveniences whose absence can be frustrating.
Creatoon is simple and intuitive. It allows you to create cutout-style 2D animations and add special effects to them. The cutout animation may seem outdated, but it has some advanced features. The app allows you to combine bitmaps with vector graphics, and you can edit and preview the changes you make to the animation in real time, which can save you a lot of hassle and frustration.
Creaton also offers you auto-exchange. The layout is pretty straightforward, which is a relief since you can’t rearrange the various panels and menus in the interface to streamline your workflow. It also allows you to add some nifty special effects to your animation. One of the most outstanding features is that Creatoon allows you to segregate animation elements, manipulate the progression of brush movements and adjust the precision of the sketch tool. Whether you’re just starting to learn or have a refreshing idea for cutout animation, Creatoon will have something for you.
As its name suggests, Stykz allows you to manipulate vector figures in 2D animations. Just like PAP 4.0, you can use Stykz as a planning tool for your animation. Unlike many of the software on this list, Stykz is cross-platform and works on Linux, Windows, and Mac . Also, the choice not to alienate a large part of the world’s population is not the app’s only USP.
Stykz borrows features from PivotStickFigure, such as support for STK files. If you have already worked with downloaded files in STK format, you can import them into the software. Stykz allows you to work with frames and use onion skinning to make the transition natural.
05. Toon Boom Animate Pro 3
Toon Boom is an Emmy award winning software with a free trial that you should try if only for the sheer pleasure of it. The app has an interface that is not very easy to read at first. The learning curve is steep, but with a little time you can start to appreciate the powerful features of this app.
Toon Boom Animate Pro 3 lets you achieve frame-by-frame animation with rich rig clipping features. You’ll get a pressure-sensitive pen, texture brushes, onion peeling, an intuitive interface, and a feature known as Bone Deform, among other things. This feature allows you to warp cutout figures around their bones for more realistic movements. As with vector applications, line drawings are easy to manipulate. If you use Toon Boom on a tablet, you can also enjoy touch shortcuts to zoom and rotate the canvas as you work.
Synfig is free and open source 2D animation software with the power of a professional. Available for Windows, Linux, and Mac, this software can make beautiful animations quickly and easily. The community behind this animation software is one of the best, with hundreds of tutorials and videos to learn.
It was designed to look and work similar to Flash, so if you’ve had to use it in the past, you’ll quickly learn the workspace. Remember, this software is totally free, so it’s one of the best animation software to start with. Whether you have years of experience or are just starting out, Synfig may be the perfect tool you are looking for. Test it.
The Best Software To Make 2d Animations
We list from 1 to 6 the best software to make 2D animations and we have made a brief summary of each of the software, so that you can identify the one that is most useful to you. At Collaborative Research Group, we hope you have been able to find a good option.
Check out our Guides and Reviews to other Popular Apps and Software
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