Animation:   Part 1

One of the key elements in making your animations look good are the settings.  So let’s get that set up and then we can start creating !!!

Open PSP – choose a pre-made tag you have and open it in PSP.  Duplicate it and close the original.  We are doing this just to have something to work with.  Copy.

Open Animation Shop (which will be referred to as A/S from now on).  EDIT – PASTE AS A NEW ANIMATION.


The following images will show you the settings that I use:

Click NEXT

Uncheck the box (use these settings etc.)   then click the CUSTOMIZE button

At the top – select the Optimizations tab:


At the top select the Partial Transparency tab:


NOTE:  The convert pixels amount may need to be adjusted depending on your preferences – I have seen various people change this number from 1 to 43 – as I said this is what works best for me – you will have to determine what works best for you.  This number allows me to have a clear animation and not one with a white background.

Now click OK

You are back to the first window – click the box  (use these settings etc)

NOTE:  For some reason from time to time the CONVERT PIXELS setting changes all by itself.  Therefore if you notice that your animations are becoming ‘hazy’ or ‘pixelated’ – I suggest checking your settings first and make sure they are as they should be.


These steps will all be in PSP:

Open a tag you’ve already made or create something new – if you open an existing tag – make sure you duplicate it and close the original so you do not lose the integrity of your tag.

NOTE:  Make sure you have you do any resizing before you start animating.  If you fail to do this – your image can become distorted.


Now let’s add some noise.

Activate your magic wand and select freehand selection

These are the settings I am using – but you can adjust this per your preferences

I chose the waterfall as my area to animate

TIP:  If you are animating more than one area – make sure to hold down the SHIFT key while drawing around it – so that everything stays activated.

Now we need to decide how many frames we want – seems a rule of thumb is 3 when doing this type of animation.  On your layers palette – duplicate your image 2 times for a total of 3 and rename them as I have done.

As you get more comfortable with doing this – you may not need to rename them – although it is a good practice to get into.

Apply the noise setting you like best – this is what I used

Now X-out Noise 1 and open and activate Noise 2 – change your noise percentage – usually increments of 5 work best.  So I changed mine to 30.

X-out Noise 2 and open and activate Noise 3 – change your noise percentage – I used 35.

Go to Selections – Select none.


Because this has a mask layer – I need to add a white background – add a new layer – fill with white – send to bottom






In PSP, X-Out the top 2 layers and activate Raster 1 (your white background layer).  I always keep my background layer activated.  This way I just close or open the other layers and when I edit merge – I never have to worry that I have the wrong noise layer selected.

Edit – COPY MERGED.  In A/S – Edit – Paste as a New Animation

Back in PSP – X-out Noise 1 – and open and activate Noise 2 – make sure Noise 2 is highlighted – or you will just repaste  Noise 1.  Edit – COPY MERGED.



Back in PSP – X-out Noise 2 – open and activate Noise 3 – Edit – COPY MERGED.


Select the VIEW ANIMATION button

You will now see your image animated.


Go to FILE – SAVE AS – select the folder you want to save it to – name it as you wish – and click OK.

IMPORTANT TIP:  I recently learned this – if you are planning on making tags for others – or just want to have a tag without a name for the future , when saving – choose to save it as a .MNG file.  An .MNG is the highest quality of animation – unfortunately most sites do not recognize it and therefore we always have to use the .GIF format.  Also, when you duplicate an animation – always use the .MNG file, this way each tag will start out with the best quality and not lose as much in the transition.