Adobe Character Animator (Preview 1) now available
Last month, within the halls of the Seattle office of Adobe, one could hear the bustling of people working hard on the first preview version of Character Animator. And all of that hustling has brought us to today, when I’m so excited to exclaim that it’s finally here! Install the most recent version of After Effects, and Character Animator will be installed with it.
Those that have used After Effects to do character animation will be pleasantly relieved that Character Animator is a complement to your workflow, because it avoids the tangle of expressions that you might have experienced when rigging characters or setting up lip synch in After Effects.
The Advanced Product Development and Creative Technologies Lab groups behind Character Animator include many of the people (or should I say characters?) who brought you After Effects.
“After Effects is very powerful — anything you can imagine as moving imagery you can probably create in After Effects if you spend enough time and you know the application,” says David Simons, principal scientist in the Advanced Product Development group and original developer of After Effects. “But creating a character that looks like it is alive is always a lot of work and it doesn’t need to be that way.”
David and his team were really drawn to the idea of creating an application that could take someone who knows how to draw in Photoshop or Illustrator and allow them to create a puppet that’s already alive the moment you place it on the stage. Thus Character Animator was born.
Check out these tutorials and other resources get started.
This version of Character Animator is being released as a “preview”, which means that we know that we have a lot of work left to do, but we think that it’s far enough along for you to use and give us feedback. We want to hear from you about what capabilities we need to focus on to make Character Animator most useful for you. Let us know what you think on our new Character Animator forum. Also, please, share your puppet creations on Twitter (#CharacterAnimator). We can’t wait to see what you produce!
If you have a Creative Cloud membership, you have access to the latest version of After Effects and now Character Animator, as it’s available with After Effects and your Creative Cloud subscription. Download your update to After Effects now, and Character Animator will automatically be installed with it. From within After Effects, choose File > Open Adobe Character Animator, and you’re ready to play.
If you’re not a member yet, you can download the After Effects trial version or go to the Creative Cloud site to sign up for Creative Cloud. For information about purchasing a Creative Cloud subscription, see this page about plans and this page with current promotional offers.