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How to create Stop Motion Animation in Photoshop? [Tutorial]

26 September 2012 No Comment

Stop Motion Animation is often regarded as one of the easiest and simplest type of animation that we can ever create. Since it makes use of home environment, digital cameras and easy to use locomotive objects, Stop Motion Animation (SMA) can be probably created by anyone.


A Stop Motion Animation is based on the principle that serial frames of pictures and photographs will give the viewer an illusion of motion. In simple words, Stop Motion Animation is nothing but a series of individual photographs of a movable object. And, today we will see a tutorial about how to create a Stop Motion Animation clip using objects of your choice using Photoshop.

Step 1 – Capture

The first things you require to create an SMA are a series of pictures or images. So, for that you must first capture the pictures using a digital camera. The environment that you are working on can be anywhere with abundant incoming natural light, so that your pictures don’t look dull. The digital camera should be mounted on a tripod stand so as to eliminate even the slightest of shakes in the picture. Moreover, if you are dissatisfied with certain images, just re-capture them without second thoughts. This helps to save a lot of time during editing.

Step 2 – Sync

The next step is to import all your captured images to your system. As you have captured the pictures in a series, there must not be any issues with the file numbering or naming, but in case if you have deleted any pictures while shooting, there will arise certain gaps or patches when playing the animation. So, for this you can use Adobe Bridge to fix the issues with the missing images.

Step 3 – Liven Your Images

Now, let’s break up the process into points for a better understanding. So, here it is:

  • Launch Adobe Photoshop on your system
  • Go to ‘open’ under the file tab and search for the folder where you have imported the     pictures from the camera.
  • Select the entire files in the folder or click on the image sequence box below File Type bar.
  • Click on open.
  • Once you select open, a window will pop up asking you to specify the frame rate. The frame rate determines the speed of your animation and will animate frames accordingly. So, choose a frame rate according to the theme or idea of your animation and select the OK button.
  • The animation screen must now be visible in the Photoshop work area. In case it fails to show up, select Animation button under the window tab. This will bring in the animation timeline, which you can drag and use accordingly.
  • Photoshop even allows you to add a personal touch to the clips that you create such as a watermark or a signature. To do this, simply add a new layer and choose your pre-stored signature or watermark and place it on a location of your choice.
  • You can even specify the duration of the signature or watermark that you intend to display on your video. By adjusting the duration bar under the timeline screen (as like Windows Movie Maker) you can set the duration of your signature.
  • Your SMA is almost ready now with the only process remaining – The Export. So, to do this, select export under the File tab and from the screen that stretches out from the export tab select the Render Video option.
  • This stage asks you to specify a number of video settings. Begin by assigning a file name to the clip and destination folder. Then select the desired output format (.avi, .wmv, .mov etc.) and set the video quality to maximum.
  • Also, confirm the frame rate again and select the size of the images.
  • And click on render as I say 3…2…1..!
  • Your movie will be exported to the specified destination folder from where you can play them.
  • You may even convert the clips later to your preferred file formats using any one of the many video converters available.
  • Behold, your SMA is created!

Wasn’t that simple! All you have to make sure in the entire process is the image quality. The pictures that you shoot must be blur-free and shake-less to give the maximum effect. So, create your Stop Motion Animation using unique ideas and share them with your friends!

Example Video Tutorial

(Copyrights reserved to Youtube and the uploader.)

This is a guest post by Jem Larson of buyVerizon.com, a site that offers savings and current information on Verizon FiOS.

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