Flipbook for Mac OS X

Well, it's finally here. One of the best pencil testers around is officially in beta release for Mac OS X. Congratulations to Kent Braun and Digicel. We've had the privilege of trying out the new software and it works very nicely. Not only is it ready for Mac OS X, it is a Universal Binary meaning it will run on the new Intel powered Macs. You can even use it with an Apple iSight. If you'd like to get your hands on it yourself, head over to the Flipbook website and download the beta.

- steve and hoops



Recently I've received some questions about Animo. It's a piece of animation software that Hoops and I been using for over a decade for all of our animation needs. Everything from ink & paint to animation and character design using the vector tools (from the older system). Just to clarify a few things. Yes, Animo was the tool used for WB and Dreamworks' 2D features. Yes, Cambridge Animation is still around. Yes, Animo is still available. The current version is 6.0. I know of four studios here in L.A. that just recently started using Animo for their ink & paint needs. There are many others across the globe that use it as well. It runs on both Mac OS X and Windows and it has the best color model system around. I believe there is a student version available. If you are looking for more info about Animo, please head over to the CAS website.

If you are interested in the older vector tools have a look at my personal website. I've put up some samples and even the original demo reel of the product. Yes, that's the original Animo running on NeXTSTEP in the demo! Yes that's a screengrab of Animo 1.7 running on Mac OS X!

- steve


Could it be true?

We received a post about Flipbook finally coming to Mac OS X. While this is encouraging news, this is a product that was announced as "coming soon" back in the year 2000. We remain skeptical whether or not this is a product that will actually ship in the coming months and be updated regularly after it is released into the wild. We have been pushing for a decent pencil tester program OS X since its release. A few have tried, but never seemed really understand the needs of the animator. Currently the only real option on OS X is Toki Line Test which is mediocre at best.

If Flipbook on OS X does become a reality it will be a welcome addition to the animator's arsenal.

In retrospect all we can say is "What took you so long?"

- steve and hoops


Cool Animation Tools

We were looking around the net for some cool animation tools to feature on Animation Meat the other day and we found a couple of neat little pieces of freeware and shareware. Of course, since we at the Meat are big Mac fans the tools we found are for OSX on Macintosh. Every animator should have a metronome to help with timing walks etc. So, with that in mind, we found two good freeware metronomes for OSX: MetronomeX and TapTempo. I like the simplicity of MetronomeX but TapTempo is cool as well in that you can tap in a beat and it will figure out the tempo for you.

Another good tool for your arsenal is a timecode frame calculator. This will allow you to add up your footage and frames, very handy if you want to calculate all the footage you've done on a job before going in to ask for a raise. We found a very cool little timecode calculator for OSX called surprisingly enough: Timecode Calculator. There is a limited free version (v1.0) and a $7 version (v2.0) with a ton of different formats from film to video. It comes in the slick OSX brush metal look and will be a handsome addition to any desktop.


Clean Design

We've received many comments about the new design of the site. We were going to keep it secret, but we've invested in some very, very expensive software along with a 4 week training course both Hoops and I have been taking to get certified on. We had to buy a new server with 8 GB of RAM to run everything and.....

Just kiddingsmiley_wink ....

We found a great little tool that'll have you up and running with a great looking site in no time!

Rapidweaver $35 (Mac OS X only)

Oh, and the site is best viewed in Firefox or Safari.



Animo, Flash and the Mac

Cambridge Animation Systems has announced that it's 2D animation package "Animo" will be coming to the Macintosh platform and will be adding Flash output to the mix. Seeing as how most digital artists generally lean towards the Macintosh platform this is great news. Jon and I have been longtime supporters of the Animo system and are very pleased with these developments. CAS Animo has offered a complete digital animation package for animation production since it's beginnings in the early 90's. While other packages are available, Animo was and still is the most complete package on the market. Among some of the standout features are it's unbeatable, unlimited system for color models (believe it or not, some other systems currently available can still only provide 256 colors), animateable vector drawing tools second to none (including Illustrator, Live Motion, Freehand and Flash itself) and the ability to do track reading right in the system. It has also offered distributed rendering since it was released. For smaller companies and individuals these tools, along with the addition of Flash output, have the potential to revolutionize animation on the internet (which is what Jon and I have been saying all along). This is coming from years of experience with the product, not just speculation.

Here at Animation Meat we do not like to re-purpose press releases and use them for advertorials as some other publications do. So here's a link to take you straight to the horse's mouth.