Animation Toolkit

How to Create a Cut-out Animation

You will need:
  • Paper
  • Pens/pencils
  • Scissors
  • Blu tack
  • Video Camera
  • Tripod
  • Exposure Sheet
Watch the video How to Create a Cut-Out Animation

1. Decide on your story and create a storyboard.  

2. Decide on which characters or objects will be animated - draw, colour and cut-out each section of the character or object.  Ensure that every part that is to be animated is drawn separately - even including the pupils of an eye! Remember that characters can be drawn in different sizes depending on whether you want them to appear close-up or far away. Draw any background scenes.

3. Download the Exposure Sheet and use this to create a frame-by-frame plan of how your animation will look.

4. Use blu tack to secure the background to a static surface. This is important as it will stop it from moving in the final animation.

5. Fix the camera onto the tripod and position it pointing down directly above the backdrop.

6. Place each part of the cut-outs where you want them to be. Then frame up the camera to ensure that everything is in shot.

7. Use your exposure sheet to help you photograph each shot frame-by-frame.  Move each individual piece of your drawn animation and take a photograph each time to build up the shot until it is complete. Tick off each shot on your exposure sheet as you take it. 

8. Repeat this process until you have photographed each frame.  

Follow the Related Links at the bottom of this page to watch some examples of students' animations, or download activity sheets from the Anim8ted website.

Document icon Learning article provided by: National Media Museum | 
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