Free 2D animation software

Here is a list of free 2d animation software used to create animations with ease. Most professional animation creation programs are a bit expensive, it therefore ideal to start with the free programs then later on after mastering animations basics you can go for the pro versions.

The Animation programs listed here are applicable for both beginners and professionals. It is obvious that free programs always lack features that we usually find in the professional editions. So, don’t expect high quality out come from these free animation programs.

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CreaToon is free 2d animation software that enables you to create 2D animation in the cut-out style. The software has basic animation features including real-time editing previewing, graphic style freedom and more. CreaToon release 3.0 even comes with improved features such as user interface, curve drawing functionality and fixes bugs.

Features of CreaToon

  • Support real-time editing and previewing
  • Allows to use real drawings and pictures formats (BMP, TGA, PNG, TIFF)
  • Include the real-time preview and keyframe editor that allows to do cut out shape without setting each single frame
  • Support multi plane camera and correct mistakes easily
  • Allows to change image colors, move objects, duplicate animated objects, move and animate a character, stretch and scale images, etc
  • Support timing animations

Compatibility: only works on Windows (up to XP) running PC

Website: CreaToon 2D Animation  

Synfig Studio

Synfig Studio is an open source and free 2d animation software that can create film-quality animation using bitmap and vector artwork. It allows creating animations without frame-by-frame.

Key features of Synfig Studio (publisher’s description)

  • Support multiple layer for various types including gradients, geometric, filters, transformations, distortions, fractal, etc
  • Spatial resolution independence which helps to edit individual elements
  • Animation-keyframes are interpolated by the computer
  • Support High Dynamic-Range Imaging that allows to support greater pixel range, better lighting effect, and improved color compositions
  • Include Draw tools that responds to pressure sensitivity (Pentablet friendly tools)
  • Full support for gradient paths that follow along a drawn shape
  • Artist-oriented design

Compatibility: Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 (available for 32 and 64-bits), Linux, Mac OS X, Ubuntu, Debian

Website:  Synfig Studio

Pencil Animation

Pencil is also an open source, traditional and free 2d animation software that lets you create hand drawn animations and cartoons. It allows you to use both bitmap and vector based graphics. The software is designed for anyone who wants to make simple 2D animation.

Features of Pencil Animation

  • Project is organized in four types of layers: bitmap, vector, sound and camera
  • Include basic drawing tools with unlimited canvas space
  • Allows to Zoom, scale, rotate images and canvas
  • Make animations using images and support keyframes
  • Support Onion-skin and adjust keys
  • Allow to import bitmap images and support drag and drop
  • Allows to define camera view
  • Support elementary sound support
  • Save and export in XML , as a sequence of PNG images, Flash movie, QuickTime movie format

Compatibility: Windows XP, Vista, Max OS X, Linux

Website: Pencil free Animation software

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