Toon Boom Studio 5 Released

Toon Boom Animation has released Toon Boom Studio 5, rebranding and repositioning the animation application as an educational tool for multi-technique animation. The release includes a new stop-motion animation feature, as well as traditional, digital, cut-out, and rotoscoping animation techniques.

Version 5 gives users the capability of creating stop-motion animation and time-lapse imagery. It also offers onion-skin positioning, live view/image capture, the ability to change backgrounds with Chroma Key Screens (in green and blue), rotoscoping, optimized image playback, annotated layers, and the ability to import Flip Boom Classic and Animation-ish projects. The new version also features easy export of projects to YouTube and Facebook.

"Studio is widely used to create animated shorts using traditional, paperless, and cut-out animation techniques," said Karina Bessoudo, Toon Boom's vice president of marketing and communications. "The new stop-motion capabilities relate to the ability to capture a sequence of images of your favorite figurines (moving them slightly from one pose to another) and to animate them within Studio. The beauty is that you can combine hand drawn backgrounds with an image sequence of figurines done using plasticene."

This version of Toon Boom Studio also sports a simplified user interface targeted to hobbyists, students, and teachers, and is designed to make the program's concepts and operation easier to use and discover. "New buttons have been added to give quick access to the new features. As for the previous buttons, they have been redrawn and colored to make the interface more user-friendly," Bessoudo said.

Accompanying the upgrade is the new Stop-Motion Animation Workout, a step-by-step tutorial on how to create stop-motion animations. It's available via electronic download for $27.

Coinciding with the new release, Toon Boom has also revamped the Education and Community sections of its Web site. The education section re-design makes it easier for teachers, students, and schools to find and purchase products, while the community section emphasizes various free services, such as forums, the company blog, a job board, and more.

"As we are promoting Studio to hobbyists, students, and educators, we feel it is critical to deliver to them a platform where they can exchange information, showcase their talents and connect with other users and potential employers," Bessoudo added.

The new version will be available at the promotional price of $350 until July 8; after that date, it reverts to its regular price of $400. Anyone who purchased the previous version on or after May 1, will receive a free upgrade. The normal upgrade price from version 4 or 4.5 is $99.

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