Animation Tools

Top digital artists’ animation tools

For a digital artist, game creator, or character designer, animation tools are an essential part of the process. There’s nothing quite like seeing your static pictures come to life. Adding movement to your drawings, whether it’s a simple animation or a full-length cartoon, gives them a fresh and exciting dimension. For more details click here.

However, moving away from static images and into the world of digital animation can be overwhelming. There’s a lot to learn (starting with the 12 animation principles) and a lot of resources to choose from. So, where do you begin?

From pixel art to vector-based graphics, you’ll find some of the best tools for making 2D animation, with a focus on gaming, in this round-up. So, what do you have to lose? Let’s get this party started!

OpenToonz is a website that allows you to build your own

Do you aspire to be as talented as Studio Ghibli? We can’t guarantee it, but we can provide you with the animation tool that was used to create films like Spirited Away and Howl’s Moving Castle, which can be customised along the way.

Toonz was first used by Ghibli during the development of Princess Mononoke, and in 2016, the strong animation tool was renamed OpenToonz (a commercial version, Toonz Premium, is still available if you insist on paying). It includes all of the resources you’ll need, including drawing tools, effects, scripting, tweening, and more, and new features are added on a regular basis 3d-animator.

The newest update, 1.4, is now available for Mac and Windows, and includes a new stop-motion panel as well as support for Canon DSLR cameras. In addition to OpenToonz, the Morevna Edition is an open-source version that is also available on Linux and includes features including assistant guides to make it easier to add perspective to your environments, integration with the MyPaint brush engine, a horizontal timeline, and an advanced colour selector. If you’re unsure which version of OpenToonz to use, we recommend this one, particularly since the basic OpenToonz documentation appears to be only in Japanese.


Piskel is a website that allows you to make animated sprites and pixel art. It’s easy to use and needs no registration. If you want to make a public or private gallery, you can do so by logging in with your Google account.

Piskel allows you to see a live preview of your picture while you work on it. Importing PNGs, JPGs, BMPs, and animated GIFs is also an option. You can also import.piskel files, which are Piskel’s proprietary format. Animated GIFs, PNG spritesheets, and a zip with each frame represented as a PNG are all options for export.

Aseprite is a type of aseprite.

Aseprite is another excellent pixel art and animation programme. Layer support, onion skins, playback modes, alpha channel power, shading modes, and custom brushes are all included, as you’d expect from a larger publisher. You can import and export a range of formats, including PNGs, spritesheets, and animated GIFs, just like Piskel.


Spine helps you to animate your current artwork, taking it into the world of pixel art. That’s right, Spine doesn’t come with any illustration materials. It is, however, well worth a look because it is such a good animation tool.

Spine includes a dope sheet and a Free-Form Deformation (FFD) tool, as well as all of the tools you’ll need to animate your characters. The dope sheet provides a clear view of the timeline, allowing you to adjust the animation’s timings. You can also distort your image by transforming individual mesh vertices with the FFD method.

2D Pencil

Bring your hand-drawn animations to life with this cross-platform 2D drawing and animation software. Pencil2D’s lightweight nature allows you to concentrate on the art and animation rather than the gui. It can import and export a variety of formats and supports both raster and vector graphics.

FlipBook is a digital publication that allows you to

If you’re looking for a graphics app to build traditional 2D animation, FlipBook, like Pencil2D, is a good option. Backgrounds, cels, overlays, and even movies can be drawn, scanned, and imported into FlipBook. You may also provide audio. You can export still images or the entire animated movie once you’re done.

Synfig Studio is a versatile, cross-platform, open source 2D animation drawing and animation tool. Synfig, while being more complex than most other graphics apps, allows you to monitor almost every aspect of your animation and includes tools like brushes, fills, masking, layers, and more.