Pencil2D Animation is a lightweight but incredibly effective cross-platform 2D animation software built in an open-source environment under the Qt framework. After more than a decade on the market, this app managed to emerge as one of the most capable drawing software solutions for animating cartoons using not only traditional techniques but also utilizing new tools for managing bitmap and vector drawings. This and many more features are packed in an archive of less than 50MB in size, enabling everyone to easily install this popular static and animated drawing tool to their desktop or laptop PC.
Pencil2D Animation is a comprehensive tool suitable for web or art designers who need professional features to create impressive cartoons or animations. The program lets you build your animation by making multiple slides.
“Animation is about creating the illusion of life. And you can’t create it if you don’t have one.” – Brad Bird
The history of Pencil 2D Animation 64 bit development is long and turbulent. The app was originally unveiled as “Pencil” in 2006 but was abandoned by its developers in 2009 and became supported by the open-source community in 2013 when it was renamed to its current name. Since that moment, the app very quickly advanced to its current stage, incorporating numerous advancements in the 2D drawing and animation world, with numerous changes to the UI, bug fixes, and stability fixes transforming the app into a competent and reliable animation tool.
|Operating System||Windows: Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10
Mac: Mac OS X 10.7 and higher version
|Processor||ICore-5 (3rd Generation or Above) or comparable CPU architecture|
|Memory||4 GB of RAM|
Pencil2d – 2D Animation Software Features
- Minimal Design: Lightweight and easy to use so you can focus on animating and not what button to hit next.
- Raster & Vector: Seamlessly switch between raster and vector workflows, allowing you to sketch, ink & paint on the go.
- Cross-Platform: This is cross-platform and runs on Windows, macOS, Linux & FreeBSD.
- Open Source & Free: It is completely open-source and free to use, even commercially!
Pencil2D Animation features a minimal but tightly packed design that allows users to very quickly reach all the tools needed for tight management of both drawing layers and animation frames. The layout is additionally enhanced with the presence of advanced tools, such as the ability to load the video behind the canvas to more easily animate your 2D art. This makes the app perfect for all types of work, from training and experimentation to finalizing school projects, designing web art, and professional projects. Testing and experimentation are helped with the presence of bitmap layers, with a seamless tool for switching to vector art that is used for final animation.
It’s recommended to read the help manual to get familiarized with how each function works. By default, Pencil2D Animation starts with a bitmap and vector layer to which you can add other similar ones, like a camera or sound. The main purpose of the bitmap is to help you make your draft, while the vector layer can act as the final design.
You can draw using the pencil or brush whose size and feather can be adjusted using the sliders, while the color can be chosen from the palette.
In addition, you have the option to manually create shapes and fill them with different tints. You can make your own colors by dragging the red, green, blue, and alpha channel sliders, and add the result to the list.
Finished single stills or animations can be exported to a wide variety of supported formats, including XML, SVG, GIF, AVI, MOV, and WMV for animation and BMP and PNG for still images.
Official Video Intro Pencil2D Software
FAQ of 2D Animation Software
When I import sounds, I can see them on the layer, but I can’t hear anything?
Please download Pencil2D 0.6.4 or later version and check it again. If you still can’t hear the sound, we offer you a small workaround. Please download a free audio editor Audacity.
- Open the file you want with it.
- The re-export it as a WAV file. It appears as WAV (Microsoft) PCM 16bit signed.
It will be a lot bigger, BUT, you will be able to import the file now!
If you want to convert back to a readable MP3 file, you have to download an additional plug-in for Audacity.
Can I copy and paste in place specific content from one frame to another inside Pencil2D?
Yes, to COPY a portion of or your entire drawing, you can use the selection tool (dotted marquee) to select a partial section of your drawing and press CTRL+C. Conversely, you can also CUT the selected artwork by pressing CTRL+X.
Once you’ve copied or cut the artwork, Go to a new frame you have already created or create one now, then press CTRL + V, and your selected artwork will be pasted in place.
How to increase the timeline frame length? I can only see 240 frames.
Pencil2D can currently display up to 10,000 thousand frames.
But don’t worry the timeline will auto-extend when you place a keyframe towards the end of the timeline panel display space.
To enable more frames manually please go to EDIT > PREFERENCES > TIMELINE > Timeline size in Frames.
- Animation Desk
- Wick Editor
- Synfig Studio
Pencil2D Animation is 100% FREE, receives regular updates from its motivated open-source developer community, and can be used in both personal and commercial projects. The app is optimized for all modern versions of Windows OS (Windows XP and newer).
The bottom line is that Pencil2D Animation is a reliable software solution that comes in handy especially for digital designers to make amazing image animations and static drawings that can contain sounds and videos using a bitmap, vector, sound, and camera layers.