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About Flash MX animation

You can create animation in a Macromedia Flash MX document by changing the contents of successive frames. You can make an object move across the Stage, increase or decrease its size, rotate, change color, fade in or out, or change shape. Changes can occur independently of, or in concert with, other changes. For example, you can make an object rotate and fade in as it moves across the Stage.

There are two methods for creating an animation sequence in Macromedia Flash: frame-by-frame animation, and tweened animation. In tweened animation, you create starting and ending frames and let Macromedia Flash create the frames in between. Macromedia Flash varies the object's size, rotation, color, or other attributes evenly between the starting and ending frames to create the appearance of movement. In frame-by-frame animation, you create the image in every frame. In this tutorial, you'll be creating a tweened animation. Tweened animation is an effective way to create movement and changes over time while minimizing file size. In tweened animation, Macromedia Flash stores only the values for the changes between frames.

Each scene in a Macromedia Flash document can consist of any number of layers. As you animate, you use layers and layer folders to organize the components of an animation sequence and to separate animated objects so they don't erase, connect, or segment each other. If you want Macromedia Flash to tween the movement of more than one group or symbol at once, each must be on a separate layer. Typically, the background layer contains static artwork, and each additional layer contains one separate animated object.

When a document has several layers, tracking and editing the objects on one or two of them can be difficult. This task is easier if you work with the contents of one layer at a time. Layer folders help you organize layers into manageable groups that you can expand and collapse to view only the layers relevant to your current task. In this tutorial you'll create two layers and create a motion tween in each one separately.

For more information, see Flash Help (Help > Using Flash > Creating Animation).

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