Signature Writing

To start your project you are going to need a graphic to use as a writing instrument. I chose an ice cream cone for this tutorial. I found it in the PSP Picture tubes and I opened a new image in PSP then chose the picture tube tool and chose the ice cream (may not be in everyone's PSP). I then sized it to scale 50 and placed the image into my new image. I then rotated the ice cream 90% right for it to sit on it's side for the first frame of the animation. I copied and then pasted it as a new animation in AS. I went back to PSP and undid the rotate then rotated right 30% to give it the angle for writing. I copied it and pasted as a new animation in AS.



You can use many different graphics for a writing tool, a long stemmed rose, a feather, a pen, pencil. Find a graphic that you would like to use for your writing instrument. You can see if you can find one in your collection of tubes or just a graphic that you have. To rotate the graphic click on Image on the top menu and then Rotate (see graphic on your right). The a window will pop up like the one below. Experiment with the angle until you find the right angle. Choose an angle then click ok, if it is wrong then click Edit, then Undo and redo the rotate.

When you are satisfied that you have angled your writing instrument we can continue with the rest of the tutorial.

Working from Animation Shop, open a new image, I usually make them 500 X 400 and crop when I am done. You will then copy your writing instrument that is sitting on it's side into the blank document as shown below:

You will now create another new image the same size as your first. On your right hand side of AS you should see your color palette, (shown below on the left). Click on the Foreground and another window (below right) will pop up and you can choose the color you wish your text to be.  Once you have chosen your color click on OK and the window will close and your Foreground will display your chosen color.

On your tool palette (shown to the left) click on the Add text tool (A). Click your mouse inside your new image and the window below will pop up.


For this tutorial I used the settings as seen in the image to the left. When you have chosen your preferred font, style, size and wording click OK. You may have to move your text in the window to place it so it is all inside the window but this is easily done by placing your cursor on top of the text and moving it.

When you have placed your text it should appear similar to the image below.

You now want to copy your text, make sure that the tool palette has the arrow selected and right click on your text image and choose copy. Now go to your other image with the writing instrument and right click on it and choose paste then After Current Frame. You may want to do this several times to start with, you are going to end up doing it many times before you are finished. My animation has 37 frames. If you run out of frames you always have the original text image to recopy from.

In the second frame, right after the writing tool you are going to want to take the eraser tool and erase almost all of your text but a dot that will mark the beginning of your writing. So for my image the dot represents the very upper left spot on the W. See the first graphic below, I have the dot circled in red. You then want to choose the arrow in the tool palette and copy your writing instrument that is angled for writing. Then in the window with the dot right click and choose paste into selected frame. Position your writing tool so that it is directly over the dot. Go to frame 3, using the eraser erase almost all of the text but choose a stop point where your writing instrument will change direction.  See the third graphic below. Then copy your writing instrument again and paste it over the next end spot for writing.

Continue on with each frame by adding just a little more of the text each time. See the graphics below and how the text is added with each frame.  When you are done with the creating of the writing see the bottom of this tutorial.

When you have finished all the writing you can add a couple more frames and show the writing instrument being placed back into it's original spot as shown in the last graphic above and the graphic below. When you are done crop your animation making sure you have not cut anything off. To crop you just pick the cropping tool from the tool palette and the one for AS is adjustable which is much better than with PSP. If you do crop and you've made a mistake you can correct it with the edit and undo. To see your animation before you save it. Choose View and then Animation, this is wise to be sure you have not cut anything out. When you have saved your animation it should appear similar to the one at the end of this tutorial.


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    Copyright 2001-2005 Margaret Walker