Au­todesk Sketch­Book Pro 2015

Animation Magazine - - Visual Effects -

I’m not just a 3D and CG guy dur­ing the day. My de­gree is in fine arts with an em­pha­sis in 2D me­dia, which in­cludes draw­ing. It’s some­thing that I do all the time — or at least, some­thing that I try to do all the time. Be­cause of this, I have grown quite fond of Sketch­book – both in its Pro and De­signer it­er­a­tions – mainly be­cause of its re­sponse and feel, es­pe­cially if you throw a Wa­com Cin­tiq in the mix.

In the 2015 ver­sion, Au­todesk has thrown a few sim­ple but pow­er­ful tools into the mix that should pro­vide il­lus­tra­tors an­i­ma­tors a source of en­thu­si­asm.

The first ma­jor ad­di­tion is in­her­ited from Sketch­book De­signer, and that is the Per­spec­tive Guides. How of­ten are we draw­ing stuff out and we need a street scene, or build­ing or huge books on a shelf? We wres­tle with the per­spec­tive, and then it’s off, and your fam­ily says, “There’s some­thing wrong with that. … It looks weird.” No one wants that. So Au­todesk threw in some guide mark­ers for one-, two-, and three-point per­spec­tives. They even went above and beyond the call of duty and tossed in a fish-eye per­spec­tive. I’ve never even con­tem­plated free-hand­ing a fish-eye lens. Well, now you can. Your pen­cil strokes snap to the van­ish­ing points as well as the hor­i­zon­tal and ver­ti­cal, al­low­ing you to swiftly block out your scene so that most of your valu­able time is spent on cre­atively filling in the shot rather than wor­ry­ing about the tech­ni­cal­i­ties of the per­spec­tive. Re­nais­sance artists would have been jeal­ous.

The other ma­jor tool in Sketch­book Pro 2015 is a flip­book. Yes, you can use the same pen­cil and brush tools you use for sketch­ing and ap­ply them to a time­line to get an­i­ma­tion. All the nec­es­sary bits are there. Onion skin­ning al­lows you to see pre­vi­ous and up-com­ing frames. You can move your key frames around to ad­just tim­ing. Copy and paste el­e­ments from one frame to another and scale them a bit to get that bit of squash and stretch.

While not as ro­bust an an­i­ma­tion tool as what Toon­Boom Har­mony or An­ime Stu­dio Pro of­fer, the Sketch­book flip­book gives you a su­per friendly in­ter­face to try out ideas with­out hav­ing to delve into a full an­i­ma­tion pro­duc­tion tool.

For more com­plete cov­er­age of the rest of the bells and whis­tles, check out the re­view on­line at www.an­i­ma­tion­magazine.net.

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