Online Animation Authoring Websites
This page provides an introduction to animation authoring tools available online. For computer-based animation software (instead of we-based), read our document on Advanced Computer-Based Animation Video Production Software.
- SitePal.com (Business version of Voki)
- Voki.com (Educational version of SitePal)
Animation Production Guidelines
Here are some considerations for developing your animations.
- Create Downloadable Video. It’s important to have the option for your creations to be downloadable as video. Some services such as SitePal and Voki create a player that streams the animation from their services. Once you stop paying the high monthly fees, you can no longer use the content you created. GoAnimate and XtraNormal let you download animations as video. So, choose the development platform that gives you the most freedom.
- Keep a Journal. Because some scenes, characters, objects, and features are paid for, it’s useful to keep a journal of what resources you have purchased. For example, in XtraNormal, there’s no listing of what scenes and characters you’ve purchased. If you can keep track of what you’ve purchased and use those assets over again, there’s no additional cost.
- Storyboard. It helps to script and storyboard prior to development. Some aspects of the editing and production process may be difficult to change later. For example, any objects or design characteristics you’d like persistent through your video animation should be present in the first scene — since new scenes begin where the previous scene left off.
- Use YouTube Player. The native players from most of the animation services are based on Flash. So, your animations won’t play on some mobile devices (iPod, iPhone, iPad). If you use YouTube, your creations are made available to a wider online audience and they are easily viewable on many devices including many of the new Internet connected televisions.
Online Animation Creation Examples
The video below as created using GoAnimate.com and provides an example of what you can create using that service. The text to voice dialects used were chosen as some of the more natural sounding ones available. They are Bridget and Brian (UK English dialects/accents), joined later in the animation by Jennifer (US English dialect/accent). Some of the other voices available are less natural sounding. This video was exported to YouTube and we’re using the YouTube embed/player code here to share it. Downloading videos and sharing to YouTube are features only available with the paid service.
The example below from GoAnimate.com was created using one of the free themes. We’re using the GoAnimate embed/player to share it here. We’ve removed some of the additional text links that are normally included with the GoAnimate player.
Below is a sample animated video clip made using the Voki.com web-based animation tools. The free account provides access to basic features. A paid account provides access to advanced features and the more realistic avatars (animated characters) listed in the 3D category of characters. Shown here is the 3D character Angela using the text to voice dialect/accent of English Bridget (UK). The background image was uploaded (a photo from one of the many Peace Sites on the planet). Once you create and save a Voki animation. You can edit it later. It will appear edited in all embedded locations. So, for example, if you wanted a Voki to provide a current updated message, you need only edit the text for that Voki (within your Voki account) and the avatar would speak the new message on your website.
Below is a video animation created using Xtranormal.