5 Handy Flash tips
Well, it’s that time of the quarter. Whether you’re feeling the pressures of Hell Week(s) in school, or on co-op preparing to dive back into the workload, it never hurts to cut hassles and save time.
It’s been a busy Design winter for me, between work and independent projects. Along the way, I’ve stumbled upon several handy tips for Adobe products that you may or may not know, but have saved me a world of time — and preserved my sanity. They’re not earth-shattering… just a few little handy tips. So first, I’ll share 5 quick, handy Timeline tips for Adobe Flash CS3. Here goes.
#1) “Copy” / “Paste” Frames
Want to use your sweet animation in another file, without turning it into a movie clip?
Copy the keyframes/layers of a Timeline animation from one file, and Paste them in a different file.
- Highlight the frames you want in File 1.fla
- Right-Click, go to “Copy Frames”
- Open File 2, make a new layer
- Select the keyframe where you want the pasted frames to start
- Right-click this keyframe and go to “Paste Frames”
#2) “Edit Multiple Keyframes”
Need your WHOLE complicated animation moved, without making a movie clip?
Move the physical position of multiple objects over multiple keyframes in a Timeline animation.
- Select all frames of all objects you want to move
- Click the “Edit Multiple Keyframes” icon (2 to the right of Onion Skinning, below the timeline)
* Like Onion Skinning, two Handles will appear above the keyframes.
- Drag those handles to span the set of keyframes you would like to adjust
- Select that same span of keyframes in the Timeline
- Move objects to the desired location
- When finished, un-click the “Edit Multiple Keyframes” icon
#3) “Remove” / “Insert” Frames
Need to move your timeline animation a few frames earlier (or later)?
Instead of dragging selected frames, delete frames or insert blank frames to adjust the position of all keyframes for the selected layers.
- Select the amount of frames you want to add or delete.
- Right-Click, and select “Remove Frames” or “Insert Frames” accordingly
#4) “Reverse Frames”
Use this handy feature if you need a Timeline animation reversed completely backwards.
- Select the frames you need reversed
- Right-Click, and select “Reverse Frames”
#5) “Add Shape Hint”
Flash completely butcher your attempts at Shape Tweening?
Add a Shape Hint to set the start and ending position of specific points.
- Select the first keyframe in the timeline of your Shape Tween animation
- Go to Modify -> Shape -> Add Shape Hint (or SHIFT + Cmd + H)
- A little red circle will appear in the center of the shape. Drag it to the point you want to start with.
- Now, select the last keyframe in the timeline of your Shape Tween
- Notice the little red circle in the center again. Now just drag the circle to the new position of the point.
- REPEAT for pretty much every point that’s important in the animation, until Flash gets it right!
That’s all I got for now. Like I said, nothing earth-shattering. But, I’d love to hear if any of this is new or helpful. Or, if you’ve got a tip you’d like to share, leave a comment!