Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of camera
can I use to capture pencil drawings?
Can I use my digital still camera?
Why won't images from my digital still camera show up in FlipBook?
What scanner settings should I use on my
pencil drawings to get the best results?
What scanner do you
Why do my color images turn gray when I import then
into FlipBook's foreground levels?
Why can't I edit my drawings after I
import them into FlipBook?
additional equipment would be helpful in making animated movies?
can I output my scenes as a completed movie?
How can I make a movie that has more frames than my
version of FlipBook will allow?
Where can I get help if I have a problem using FlipBook?
What kind of camera
can I use to capture pencil drawings?
Can I use my
digital still camera?
Why won't images from my digital still camera show up
A. The best solution we know of right now is the
Simplicity 5e USB camera/stand. Iti's a good camera built into its own
so it's everything you
and least expensive is to use a USB or FireWire web cam. This works fine
for roughs but the quality isn't
so youll still want to scan your clean-ups.
you have an older analog video camera you'll
need a USB video adapter like the AVerMedia DVD EZMaker USB 2 or a
capture card like the Osprey 100.
Digital still cameras in general do NOT work. Their drivers make
them appear to the computer
as a removable storage device rather
than a camera, allowing you to copy files from the camera's
memory to the computer
but the computer can't actually see through the lens so they won't
work with FlipBook or any other
capture program without special
What scanner settings
should I use on my pencil drawings to get the best results?
A. You should scan at 300 DPI in pure black &
white for SDTV and 600 DPI in pure black &
white for HDTV. Set the
brightness as dark as you can without
adding random "garbage" to the image.
scanner do you recommend?
A. Scanning on a PC
is easy. Any 100% TWAIN compatible
scanner will work (& even some that aren't 100% compatible).
Scanning on a Mac is another story. We generally prefer Epson
scanners for both Mac and PC and they're about the only
scanner we can count on for a Mac. They work well, the Epson software is good and they offer
TWAIN drivers for
OS X with most of their scanner models.
Mustek A3 USB may be the only scanner that can scan an entire sheet of
12-field animation paper for less $150,
which makes it a great choice if you
can find one and if you're running Windows. It will let you use
Plug-In to save time and wear and tear on your peg holes.
Brother makes several multi-function
(scanner, printer, fax) machines that can handle 11 X 17 inch paper.
This makes them
solution for animators using 12 field paper. The model numbers have
changed over the years but they seem to
always start with
MFC-6. They can accept full 12-field size paper through an automatic
for $199 and $299 list price. Both
are available for less online. This is an exceptional value. However,
the Brother driver
doesn't work well with OS X. We hope to have a solution for OS X soon.
We haven't tested an HP scanner in years. Although
their scanners are fine, their scanning software is not well suited to
scanning a large number of drawings as in animation and they don't always provide OS X
compatible TWAIN drivers.
- Q. Why do my
color images turn gray
when I import them into FlipBook?
Why can't I edit my drawings after I import them into
A. FlipBook foreground levels are designed for the traditional ink &
paint process of animation where you start
with pencil lines and then paint inside the characters leaving the
outside part of the images transparent to allow
other levels and the background to show through. This requires the
files to be in a 32-bit format with an alpha
channel to define the areas of transparency.
Without that alpha channel the only other thing FlipBook could do
with a color image would be to make the entire
image opaque, which wouldn't make any sense.
So we give you two options. The default is to convert the image the
grayscale to accommodate the ink & paint
process. But there is an option to automatically add an alpha
channel and make all of the white areas in the image
transparent. The process of making part of an image transparent is
called keying and in animation these types of
images are called overlays.
If you put a check in the overlay box then you will get an option
to set how much of the white you want to key out
or to make transparent. A setting of 255 will only make pure white
become transparent. A setting of 250 will also
make a little bit of the off-white become transparent. The lower
the number the more shades of white and even
gray FlipBook will make transparent.
If you're capturing images into FlipBook with a video camera and
you want them to be in color then you need to
capture them into the background level and make sure that FlipBook
is in color mode by clicking on the color
palette icon in the tool bar.
additional equipment would be helpful
in making animated movies?
TWAIN Compatible Scanner
Digital Video Camera
if desired for Input & Output
Television or TV Monitor
Q. How can I
output my scenes as a completed movie?
How can I make a movie that has more frames than my version
of FlipBook will allow?
A. First export your scenes from FlipBook as AVI,
QuickTime or sequential files. We recommend you choose a format without
compression. Second, import the
files into any video
editor to combine the individual scenes into a completed
movie. Then export the movie from the video
editor to play on the internet or burn it onto a DVD to watch it on TV.
Q. Where can I get
help if I have questions about using FlipBook?
A. We offer free technical support whether you've already purchased
FlipBook or not.
If you have trouble please
email us and you will get help.