How To Make An Animated Video in 10 Steps

How To Make An Animated VideoAnimation is a great tool, and making an animated video yourself will make the process of animation even more fun.  Animation gives you the ability to give power, life, and feeling to inanimate objects, people, or pictures that would otherwise be lifeless.

Most people love watching movies, cartoons, or playing animated games, so it comes as no surprise that you might be interested in how to make an animated video.  Although many people think that making a movie requires a large studio or production, making an animated video can be a lot easier than you think.  Today we are going to show you how to use Windows Movie Maker to make your own animated video in 10 simple steps.

How to Create an Animated Video 

Step 1:  Draw

Before you start incorporating technology into the equation, you need to have a strong idea of what your animated movie is going to look like.  As such, your first step is going to be to draw.  Draw out your entire cartoon or vision for your video before you any further.

Step 2:  Create A Flipbook

Many filmmakers create a storyboard or a vision board before they begin their filming process.  When you are making an animated video, to get a better vision of your endeavor, consider creating a flipbook.  In your flipbook, make sure that each picture you draw matches the drawings you made for your animated movie frame to frame.

Step 3:  Photograph or Scan

With all of the frames that you drew, you will now want to scan or photograph them so that they can be saved as files onto your computer.  You will need a digital picture of every picture you drew so that you can make your cartoon come to life.  If you photograph, know that the drawings must be photographed in the order to which they will appear in your animated video.  If you have a scanner on hand, the scanner can be more helpful to achieve a cleaner look for the pictures.

Step 4:  Transfer

If you do not have a scanner to put your pictures files onto a computer, then you are going to want to transfer them directly onto your computer.  To do this, take your camera and plug it into your computer.  Save all of the pictures you took on your camera into your computer so that the animation will be able to work.

Step 5:  Edit

Most creative people are perfectionists when it comes to their work, and they want to make sure that they present the best picture possible.  Once you have your pictures on your computer, you can choose to edit them if you like.  You can use any type of photo editing program such as Photoshop or GIMP, which can be downloaded for free.  Also, when you are editing your pictures, make sure that each one of them is in the same place within the frame or else the animation will become choppy.

Step 6:  Windows Movie Maker

Since we are using Windows Movie Maker for this specific tutorial on how to make an animated video, you are going to want to make sure you have Windows Movie Maker downloaded on your computer.  Once you do, go ahead and open the Windows Movie Maker program.

Step 7:  Import Pictures

Now you are going to want to import all of the pictures you just took, that are now saved on your computer, into Windows Movie Maker.  Go to “File” in Windows Movie Maker and click on “Import into Collections”.  All of your pictures should show up in the middle of your screen.

Step 8:  Add To Timeline

When your pictures are imported onto Windows Movie Maker, right click on all of the pictures that you imported.  Unfortunately, you will need to click on each picture one at a time in the order that your animation video will go in.  When you are done clicking, a rectangle should appear.  Click on the first box on the top that says “Add to Timeline”.  The picture that you click on should appear at the bottom of your screen in a rectangle that says “Video” on the right side.  Do this with each of your drawings.

Step 9:  Delete

Now you are going to want to delete all of the pictures that are in the box labeled “Collection” in big letters.  Be careful not to delete or touch any of the pictures in the box labeled “Video” until later.

Step 10:  Video Effects

When you have all your pictures where they should be, you need to edit your video so that the animation will work.  To do this, right click on “All” of the pictures one at a time.  When a rectangle pops up, you will want to click on the “7th” box in the rectangle that is labeled “Video Effects”.  A box of options will pop up called “Add or Remove Video Effects.”  Go ahead and scroll all the way down to the bottom of the box where it says “Speed Up, Double”.  Click on this option and click on “Add”.  Select the “Speed Up, Double” option 6 times.  Then at the bottom of the box click on the “Ok” button.

Watch Your Animated Video!

how to make an animated videoHaving completed all the steps, you can go ahead and take a preview now of what your animated short is going to look like.

  1. Go up to the menu button at the top of the Windows Movie Maker application.
  2. Click on the option that says “Play” at the top.
  3. When a drop down rectangle appears, click on the 3rd option that says “Play Timeline”.
  4. Watch your animated video play picture by picture, and enjoy!

Tips For Creating A Successful Animated Video

1:  Prepare:

Creating an animation video is a lot like writing a story, except you are going to need to add visuals to words.  As soon as your story starts growing through your visual elements, then the magic can start taking place.  However, you probably want to make an outline or write out your ideas and draw pictures, as we mentioned above.  Letting all your ideas stew in your mind could end up giving you more work with structuring down the line.  Before you begin making your animated video, ask yourself questions that will help you see which direction you want your video to take, such as:

  • What do I want to do with this video and is there anything I hope to achieve with it?
  • Who do I hope will watch this video and why would they be interested in it?
  • How am I going to use this video or present it to my audience?

2:  Find Your Audience

Although it might be entertaining to create an animated video just for the fun of it, you might want to eventually make an animated video that is geared towards a certain audience.  For example: students, colleagues, customers, or website visitors.  You are going to want to narrow your audience down and set a target.  You can do this by setting your target towards a few things:

  • It could target visitors of a website who are looking for a specific product or service.
  • The video could help customers who have problems with a certain feature or service of a product.
  • It could be done to simply entertain anyone who is interested in watching a short animated film.

3:  Practice Your Art

Being a good artist could save you a lot of time with having to take pictures or use programs on your computer to refine your images.  Practice with drawing or visit some websites where you can easily create animation if you are a beginner.

Animate Your Storytelling

Animation is powerful, and an animated video can help you tell a story, wow your co-workers, or create a dazzling and impressive presentation.  To put some animated flare into your life, enroll in this video and animation master class to learn how to add some amazing effects to video and animation.