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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Flash 5 Cartooning


Flash 5 Cartooning is a stunning, full color book that reveals scores of tips and techniques for building great cartoons, regardless of your artistic experience. Everything from cartooning fundamentals to advanced Flash techniques like ActionScripting and selling your work online More...
is covered here, in this unique guide to creating exciting Flash cartoons. Author Mark Clarkson dives deep into the key topics cartooners need to know, with an emphasis on things like interactivity, special visual and audio effects, timing (it's critical to a good joke, you know), cartoon physics, and more! A free companion CD-ROM is packed with sample cartoons from the book, additional cartooning material, and product tryouts.


Finally someone has written a book on animating in Flash. It's a wonder there aren't more like it. Flash 5 Cartooning covers the cartoon production cycle from a Flash artist's standpoint--drawing, writing, storyboarding, animating, and keyframes. Sounds like a book on More...
traditional animation, doesn't it? But everything is examined from a Flash perspective. When the book talks about drawing, it means drawing with a tablet. When it talks on keyframes and in-betweens, it is within Flash and not on paper that these issues are covered.

The book has two outstanding features: first, it's about making cartoons, not Flash. It just so happens that the tool of choice is Flash and the mode of distribution is the Web. Topics like scripting (writing a cartoon story, not computer scripting), storyboarding, layout, camera moves, and basic animation technique are well covered, as well as the Flash interface, how Flash works, how to compress media for faster downloading, basic HTML, and other Flash- and Web-specific topics.

The second great feature is the CD-ROM, which includes samples and material used in the chapters, but above all contains a digital version of the book. Not a stripped-down, bare-bones text version, but a full-color, searchable version. Having a material like this at one's fingertips on CD-ROM raises its usability rating through the roof.

Written in a clear, concise, and lighthearted voice, the book spans 15 chapters. Every page has a handful of screen shots, and every page is in full color. There were no shortcuts taken in either content or production value.

It's remarkable that there aren't more books like this. Sure, Flash is a great tool for all kinds of dynamic graphics and interactivity, but the Flash cartoon sites get a disproportionately high number of hits. Flash cartoons download fast, are often wonderfully creative, and in most cases carry a strong sense of the artist who created them. This is what Flash and the Web have created--a venue for independent animators. Maybe cartoons still aren't taken seriously and that's why so little has been published on the topic; regardless, Flash 5 Cartooning excels in its class, not because the genre is so nichey, but because it is simply a terrific book. --Mike Caputo

Judul: Flash 5 Cartooning: Planning, Drawing and Animating Your Won Cartoons.
Pengarang: Mark Clarkson
Penerbit: Hungry Minds, Inc.
Tebal: 231 halaman, full color

Mengapa Yogi Bear menggunakan dasi? Berapa gambar yang dibutuhkan untuk membuat walk cycle? Bagaimana menyelaraskan suara dan ekspresi mulut? Ini adalah jenis-jenis pertanyaan yang akan terjawab di dalam buku ini. Tidak seperti buku-buku Flash lainnya, di dalam buku ini pemahaman artistik dan teknis membuat animasi dibahas sedalam pembahasan teknis penggunaan software Flash sebagai perangkat pembuat animasi.

Flash sendiri dimulai sebagai software untuk membuat animasi cel (baca: kartun) bernama Future Splash. Dengan perangkat ini, dimungkinkan untuk membuat animasi dengan ukuran kecil untuk didistribusikan melalui Internet. Macromedia melihat potensi perangkat ini dan mengakuisisinya. Dengan kemampuan Macromedia di bidang multimedia, Flash kini dikembangkan menjadi perangkat multimedia interaktif, khususnya dengan fungsi action scripting.

Dalam buku dibahas bagaimana kita perlu menonton dan mempelajari animasi kartun sebelum mulai membuatnya. Dengan tool yang memang didesain untuk para kartunis, Flash memudahkan proses sketsa, penggambaran ulang dan pewarnaan. Dilanjutkan dengan pembahasan pembuatan skrip dan storyboad, diskusi melaju pada penggunaan library yang menyimpan objek-objek yang bisa didaur ulang agar file bisa tetap kecil. Di sini dimungkinkan membuat animasi yang sederhana seperti karya Hanna Barbera dengan membagi karakter menjadi objek-objek yang bisa dianimasikan secara parsial.

Setelah belajar merekam suara, pembahasan berlanjut pada teknik keyframing dan tweening yang berguna untuk membuat animatics (storyboard yang bergerak). Melalui pemahaman walk cycle dan facial animation, kita diajarkan menggunakan teknik sinematografi untuk membuat tampilan kamera yang lebih menarik.

Sesuai judulnya, buku ini berorientasi bagi para artis yang ingin menggunakan Flash sebagai perangkat membuat animasi. ActionScript hanya dibahas sedikit sesuai relevansinya di dalam membuat animasi yang interaktif. Di bagian akhir, diskusi dikonsentrasikan pada pembuatan movie dan distribusi animasi melalui Internet.

Secara umum, buku ini adalah buku kartun yang menggunakan Flash sebagai perangkat dan sesuai untuk mereka yang ingin serius membuat animasi kartun dan mendistribusikannya melalui Internet.

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