Macromedia Flash 8

Flash is an animation software created by the company Macromedia. It is used to developed interactive graphics which can be used for websites as well as for many multimedia purpose. It also enables you to create interactive movies on the web. A browser plug-in is used to display flash on the web.
Flash elements can include simple text or buttons, scrolling text, slide show, pictures, animation and even interactive flash movies complete with sound.
Flash uses vector based graphics rather than bitmap based ones. Vector images does not loose quality when enlarged whereas bitmap looses clarity when enlarged.

Flash Components

Timeline – It consists of division of frames arranged on a number grid. The timeline is used to control and organize the content of the project by time.

Frame – It is a picture on a flash timeline. When a large number of frames are displayed in a quick succession, the animation happens.

Keyframe – It is a special frame which signals a change or action.

Panel – It is a floating box that has various table on the top to provide quick access to many options to work with objects on the stage.

Library – A panel within flash displaying the entire project’s symbols, sounds, pictures, etc.

Stage – It is the central “screen” of the main project window and the workspace where we create and modify graphics.

Toolbar – It gives quick access to the tools that allows to create, move and edit work on the stage.

Layers – They have independent timeline. We can put pictures, text and animations on them or hide/unhide, lock/unlock for convenient manipulation on them.


Flash Tools

Line Tool – It is used to draw straight lines.

Pencil Tool – It is used to draw freeform lines and shapes.

Pen Tool – To draw precise paths as straight or curved lines.

Oval Tool – It is used to draw circles and ovals.

Rectangle Tool – It is used to draw rectangles, round cornered rectangles and squares.

Brush Tool – It is used to create brush like strokes as if painting with a brush.

Eraser Tool – It removes strokes and fills in a shape. We can customize the eraser tool to erase only the strokes, only filled areas or only a single filled area.

Ink Bottle Tool – It is used to change the attributes (colour, width and style) of the stroke.

Paint Bucket Tool – It fills enclosed areas with colours. We can use the Fill Color button from the toolbar and choose a colour/gradient from the palette. We can customize the fill effects from the Fill panel.

Eye Dropper Tool – It is used to copy stroke or fill attributes from one object to another.

Arrow Tool – Using this tool we can select a stroke, fill, group, instance or text blocks.

Lasso Tool – It is used to define the selection area either in the form if zigzag free-hand shape or straight edged polygon shape.

Text Tool – It places text blocks on the stage. We can set the text characteristics (Font type, size, style, etc.) from the Text panel.



Layers are like pieces of transparent plastic. You can put pictures, text and animations on them. You can hide/unhide, lock/unlock layer for convenient manipulation of objects on them.
While working on contents of a particular layer, you can hide the other layers so that your contents do not interfere your working.
You lock a layer so that they do not get moved or modified accidentally.



Frames and Keyframes

A keyframe is a special type of frame where a user draws an object and the flash uses frames in between two keyframes to create animation.
There are three types of frames:

  • Simple Frame
  • Keyframe
  • Blank Keyframe

A blank keyframe is a keyframe without any objects in it but having all the characteristics of a keyframe.


Frame by Frame Animation

It is used when we want to draw a progression of events. We need to draw every frame of animation which describes motion frame to frame.

Tween Animation

In this, we only create starting and ending frames and Flash creates rest of the frames in between and automatically varies the size, rotation and color of the object in between the frames.

Motion Tweening - In this, properties such as position, size and rotation are defined for a shape at one point of time and then they are changed at other point of time.
Shape Tweening - Shape tweening creates an effect of morphing making one shape appear to change into another shape over time.


A mask will limit the view of the layers associated with it. It creates an effect of a torch light on a dark night. It allows to cut objects so that only portions of them are visible.


Symbols can be created by different objects on the stage to use them at different instances.

Types of Symbols:

  • Graphic Symbols - These are used to create background against which we animate other things.
  • Button Symbols - By using these we can create animations which respond to mouse clicks.
  • Movie Clip Symbols - It is a flash movie within a flash movie. They have their own non restrictive timeline and can be embedded within master timeline.

Animation made using movie clip symbols:

How To Create a Basic Animation

Step 1 Draw a shape using any Flash, say a small circle.
Step 2 Click the 20th frame in the Timeline and insert a Keyframe (F6).You can see the small ball in the 20th keyframe too.
Step 3 In the keyframe at the 20th frame, move it to some different position.
Step 4 Click anywhere in the frames in between and select Windows -> Panels -> Frame Option. Frame panel opens. From Tweening drop-down list, select Motion or simply right click anywhere between the frames and select Create Motion Tween option from the pop-up menu.
Step 5 You will see the area changes to slight blue colour and an arrowhead between the two keyframes indicating that a motion tween has been applied.


Illustrative Animation


Akash Aggarwal
IIITD Roll No:- 2014008
Akshat Sinha
IIITD Roll No:- 2014132
Paurush Rathi
IIITD Roll No:- 2014151

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