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Hour 7. Animation the Old-Fashioned Way > Task: Using Onion Skin to Help Create...

Task: Using Onion Skin to Help Create an Animation

1.
Start a new file and set Frame View to Large.

2.
Turn on Onion Skin. Notice that the Start and End Onion Skin markers cannot be moved beyond the beginning or end of your animation (because it's only one frame long at this point). See the Onion Skin markers in Figure 7.6.

Figure 7.6. The Onion Skin markers indicate how many frames are included in the Onion Skin view.


3.
Draw a stick man similar to the way we did in the previous exercise (using only lines).

4.
In frame 2, select Insert, Keyframe (or press F6). This copies what was in the previous frame and pastes it into the new keyframe.

5.
While editing frame 2 (the red current frame marker should be in frame 2), drag the end of one leg to move it to a different angle. This time, the position of the leg from frame 1 is visible (though dimly) even though we can only edit the contents of frame 2.

6.
In frame 3, insert another keyframe. When you move the leg, you can judge how much based on the position of the leg in frame 2.

7.
Continue to insert keyframes one at a time. Make an edit to each new frame, then select Insert Keyframe again.

8.
When you have several frames, you can experiment with changing both the Start and End Onion Skin markers. By default, the markers are set to Onion 2, meaning you can see two frames ahead and two behind. I rarely use the End Onion Skin marker at all—I just position it at the current frame marker. I would rather see where I've been than where I'm headed. You can move the markers to several preset positions from the Modify Onion Markers pop-up (the rightmost Onion Skin button—pictured in Figure 7.7).

Figure 7.7. The Modify Onion Markers pop-up has several preset options.


Modify Onion Markers has several preset options:


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