I have been using Anime Studio it since I took part in a UNESCO initiative back in 2005/2006 called Africa Animated! 2.0. Somebody suggested we try Moho (that's what Anime Studio was called back then). UNESCO bought a license for the software, and I read through each tutorial one by one and became adept at it. I've been using it as my primary animation tool since then.
Prior to the UNESCO training initiative I remember hearing about it when I was involved in a fan game production and one of the people online mentioned this MOHO program that he thought was pretty awesome. The fan game project is what helped me get a spot as one of the UNESCO animators. The UNESCO PSA project featured a smelly bush pig that has a vulture fall in love with his smell. He runs away in fear and dives into a lake where he gets clean. Thereafter the vulture doesn't love him anymore and he is happy. But a monkey loves his new smell. A buddy from Kenya, Raphael, wrote the script and we both animated on it.
I won Anime Studio in a little animation competition. That was great! Before Anime Studio, I kind of hacked my way through Adobe Premiere but that was NOT ideal. I used After Effects a bit, but found AS to be awesome. After Effects is a bit pricey and not as suited to 2D animation as I wanted. I also have Toon Boom Animate 2, but I don't really use it that much.
Currently I use Photoshop CS4 with either a Wacom Intuos 3 and/or Cintiq 12WX in addition to Anime Studio. Then I export the layers with a script into an AS file and move stuff around within AS. However, I've done an entire 52-part series just using AS called 'HappyLand Shorts' where I drew everything within AS. It was great because the file sizes were pretty small and performance (playback and rendering) was pretty quick. I also use Toon Boom Storyboard Pro with a Cintiq to plan shots out. For sound I use the freeware "Audacity" to make click-tracks, or record small samples and edit audio. Sometimes I also use GarageBand. For final compositing I use iMovie if it's a simple case of joining scenes together. For more non-linear and precise work I use Final Cut Express 4HD to put scenes together after I've rendered out from AS.
My first AS creations were pretty cool actually. However, we used huge images and didn't know about hiding images not on screen and hiding particles that weren't being used so the render times were loooooong. Still, we used the quasi-3D plane, particles, bones, actions, vectors, .PNG files ... I really got a lot out of it the first time. The 'Export Layers to Anime Studio file' script for Photoshop saves me a bunch of time. That is my favorite feature.
The Goldfish "Get Busy Living" music video was inspired by the Lucasarts point-n-click adventures. That and a whole bunch of other stuff like Adventure Time, Jim Woodring's FRANK comics and the Scott Pilgrim comic as well as Goldfish's music and their ideas for a story. The 'Get Busy Living' project went smoothly thanks to Anime Studio. I had two laptops so the 'pack up and go' option (or 'gather media and go' or something) made life easier when I wanted to render on my other laptop. It didn't crash ONCE!
I also like music. I've been playing drums for over 10 years and I've played gigs in many bands. I'm keen for this upcoming summer season becuase I have some gigs lined up with my brother's band, 'The Kiffness'. He's like an electro-awesome-guy and very talented at making music digitally as well as playing a host of live instruments. I also do illustration work, comics, and life-drawings.
More by Mike Scott
Soundtracks and Comebacks
We Come Together
Making of - We Come Together