Free Animation Software 2D – Is it Worth It? My Experience

free animation software 2d

Animation is amazing. It holds people’s attention by telling stories through moving drawings. But, is free 2D animation software any good? I’ve used some, and it makes me wonder. Can software that doesn’t cost anything make animations that look professional?

Here’s a cool fact: Did you know that over 60% of the top-grossing animated films were created using 2D animation techniques? This fact is pretty surprising. Even though 3D animation is popular, there’s still a big need for 2D in the animation world.

What is 2D Animation?

2D animation is how movement is created by showing a sequence of pictures. It looks like things are moving, but it’s all in the pictures. It’s different from 3D animation, which uses a third dimension to make things move. In 2D, drawings are done on flat surfaces.

It’s a top pick for newcomers because it’s straightforward and easy to get into. There are many tools available that can turn your ideas into animated stories.

In this type of animation, animators draw every part of the scene. They make small changes in each drawing to show smooth movement. When these drawings are shown quickly one after the other, it seems like they are moving fluidly.

Special software is used to help make these animations. It has features for drawing, coloring, adding special effects, and timing. Both new and experienced animators can find software that fits their skill level.

Benefits of 2D Animation Software for Beginners

  • User-friendly interfaces: 2D animation software cares about beginners. They have easy-to-use menus and controls which help in the learning process.
  • Accessible tools and features: These programs come with everything needed to make great animations. There are drawing tools, colors, ready-made options, and special effects. You don’t need to be an expert to make something cool.
  • Cost-effectiveness: Starting is not expensive. There are many free or low-cost options available.
  • Learning resources: The software often includes guides and a community. It’s a great way to learn and get tips from pros.
  • Flexibility and creativity: Newcomers can let their imagination go wild with 2D animation. They can try different styles and make animations that reflect what they dream up.
  • Stepping stone to advanced animation techniques: It also sets a solid base for learning more complex animation later, such as 3D.

This software is great for both fun and learning more about animation. Its tools and support make it easy for beginners to start making awesome animations. Whether for fun or to follow a career path, 2D animation software can be the first step towards exploring the animation world.

The Difference Between 2D and 3D Animations

Both 2D and 3D animations make visuals real. But, they work differently. 2D animation draws and moves flat images. You often see it in shows and online. On the flip side, 3D animation uses software for objects with three dimensions. This is common in games and movies. Each kind has its strengths. But, here we’ll look at 2D animation tools that won’t cost you.

2D animation tools help make cool animations. They let artist create and move flat pictures easily. These free programs give handy features. Things like easy-to-use tools and many ways to animate. They are perfect for anyone wanting to get into animation without spending a lot.

2D Animation Software Features
OpenToonz An open-source software used by Studio Ghibli for complex animation projects. It offers a range of features, including the GTS scanning tool for importing scanned images.
Pencil2D A free and user-friendly software that supports both vector and raster animation. It provides a simple interface and allows for sketching, inking, and painting animations.
Animaker A powerful animation tool with a library of assets and customizable characters. It offers camera and screen effects, transitions, and audio tracks to enhance animations.
Animation Paper A software specifically designed for hand-drawn animations with responsive workflow and high-quality lines. It includes features like a light table and customizable speed dial.
Krita A versatile software that combines painting and animation capabilities. It provides a wide range of brushes, layer management, and PSD support for creating professional 2D animations.

There are many great free 2D animation programs to try out. You can make amazing animations without spending a lot. These tools are perfect for newbies or pros. They can help you learn and make beautiful 2D animations. See what you can create with these free programs. Open the door to your creativity.

Review of OpenToonz

OpenToonz is a powerful 2D animation software. It’s open-source and has a lot of features. Many people love it for working on big projects. Studio Ghibli even used it for some of their films.

One cool thing about OpenToonz is the GTS scanning tool. It lets you bring scanned images right into your animations. It works with lots of scanners and meets TWAIN standards, making it really handy.

Not being just packed with features, OpenToonz is also free. This is great for anyone wanting to make animations. It means you can make high-quality animations without spending a lot of money.

OpenToonz 2d animation software

Key Features of OpenToonz:

  • Powerful animation tools: OpenToonz has plenty of tools for drawing and painting. You can make your creative ideas come to life.
  • Node-based compositing: Animators can easily work with different parts of their animations. This lets them put everything together smoothly.
  • Camera support: OpenToonz lets you work with cameras. You can make your animations look more dynamic and interesting.
  • Advanced scripting: For those who like to customize, OpenToonz has advanced scripting. This gives you more control over your animation work.
  • Community support: There’s a big group of users who help each other develop skills and share info. It’s a great place for animators to be.

OpenToonz is for everyone, whether you’re starting out or already know a lot. It has an easy-to-use interface and many cool features. This makes it a top choice for making great 2D animations.

Now, let’s take a look at another awesome free animation software, Pencil2D. We’ll see what makes it special and how it can help animators.

The Benefits of Pencil2D

Pencil2D is a top pick for both newbies and pros in 2D animation. This software is free to use and offers many features. It’s perfect for making beautiful animations.

The software’s interface is easy to understand. It helps animators stay focused, whether they’re new or experienced. The process is smooth, which boosts creativity.

It lets users switch between vector and raster graphics easily. This means you can make animations that look sleek or have a more natural feel. Pencil2D doesn’t limit your style.

Pencil2D works on Windows, macOS, and Linux. It’s ready for download on any of these systems. This makes creating animations possible from anywhere.

Beginners love how easy Pencil2D is to use. It offers all the basics you need for animations. With Pencil2D, turning your ideas into animations is simple.

Overall, Pencil2D is your go-to for free 2D animation software. Its simplicity, compatibility, and features stand out. It’s a great choice for both fun projects and serious work.

Key Features of Pencil2D

Feature Description
User-friendly interface Pencil2D offers an intuitive interface that is easy to navigate, making animation creation a seamless process.
Support for vector and raster workflows Animators can work with vector graphics for precise lines or raster images for added texture, achieving high-quality animations.
Compatibility with multiple operating systems Pencil2D can be installed on Windows, macOS, and Linux, providing accessibility and convenience for users.
Simplicity and ease of use With essential tools for sketching, inking, and painting animations, Pencil2D is suitable for beginners and experts alike.

Animaker – An Animation Powerhouse

Animaker is a highly respected 2D animation tool. It’s loved by animators everywhere for its many features and easy use. This means you can get really creative and make amazing animations with it.

The big plus of Animaker is its huge collection of assets. You can find all sorts of characters, backgrounds, and more. This makes it easy to make any animation look just right, whether for fun or work.

Adding camera effects and music make your animations better. Animaker lets you do this easily. It makes your work more interesting for those watching.

Animaker makes amazing animation simple, without needing complex tools or a lot of money. It’s perfect for both new and experienced animators.

Animaker has a free version, but it does have limits. For more options, you can check out their paid plans. They give you more characters and features to play with.

Animaker animation software

Animaker Key Features

Feature Description
Library of Assets Access a vast collection of customizable characters, backgrounds, and properties.
Camera and Screen Effects Add depth and dynamism to animations with a range of effects and transitions.
Audio Tracks Enhance animations with high-quality audio tracks to create a complete visual experience.
User-Friendly Interface Navigate the software easily and work efficiently with Animaker’s intuitive interface.

Animaker puts incredible power to create animations in your hands. It’s perfect for anyone wanting to make animations, from experts to total beginners. Animaker breaks the limits and lets your creativity soar.

Exploring Animation Paper

Animation Paper is a top-rated 2D animation software by Niels Krogh Mortensen. He’s an experienced animator and software creator. Unlike many others, it focuses on helping artists with hand-drawn animation. This leads to a quicker and smoother workflow for animators.

This software stands out with its fine line quality for detailed animation work. It allows quick zooming and view rotation in real-time. This makes navigating your project and fine-tuning details simpler.

Animation Paper also features a light table for creating seamless transitions. This tool makes animations look consistent. It supports a speed dial feature that lets you set up your favorite tools for a smoother work process.

This software transforms how artists work, enabling them to create amazing hand-drawn animations. It gives them the power to realize their unique visions efficiently.

The Benefits of Animation Paper:

  • Specialized for hand-drawn animation
  • Fast and responsive workflow
  • Produces high-quality lines
  • Real-time zooming and rotation
  • Includes a light table for smooth transitions
  • Customizable speed dial for efficient workflow management

With Animation Paper, animators unlock their creative potential, making stunning hand-drawn animations.

Krita – More Than Just a Painting Software

Krita is more than a painting tool. It’s known as a top pick for making amazing 2D animations. It’s a go-to for digital artists, illustrators, and concept artists for their work.

This software gives animators access to many brushes and customizable layouts. It helps turn ideas into captivating animations. Krita suits any animator, from newbies to experts, with its rich features.

Its layer management makes organizing animations easy. This makes working on animations more smooth and productive.

Unleash Your Artistic Potential with Krita’s Brush Collections

Krita has a vast brush collection, perfect for every need. From sketching to adding effects, these brushes are your key to lifelike illustrations and animations.

The software lets you set up your workspace the way you like it. This means more efficiency and less hassle, as your main tools are always within easy reach.

Seamless Integration with PSD Files

If you’re used to working with Photoshop, Krita makes it easy. It works smoothly with PSD files, allowing you to keep working on what you started. This includes the layers and groups in your art.

For artists looking to dive into animation or beginners wanting to grow, Krita welcomes and supports your creativity.

“Krita not only allows me to create stunning illustrations, but it also offers powerful animation capabilities. The extensive brush collections and customizable layouts have transformed the way I approach 2D animation.”

– Amelia Thompson, Digital Artist


In conclusion, the free 2D animation software world is vast and welcoming. It caters to all animators, no matter their experience level. So, whether you’re just starting or are a pro, there’s a tool for you. From OpenToonz to Pencil2D, there are many great options. Each one offers something special to its users.

Choosing the right free animation software 2D is key. Think about what you need. Do you want to draw a lot? Need something easy to use? Make sure it works well with your computer too. By knowing what your project needs, you can find the perfect software.

Imagine what you can do with the perfect free animation software. With practice, you can make animations that wow people. And the best part is, you don’t need a big budget to get started. Embrace these free tools. They can help you reach your animation dreams today!


Is 2D animation software free?

Yes, some 2D animation software is free to use.

What is the difference between 2D and 3D animations?

In 2D, artists draw and move flat images. 3D animation builds objects and worlds that look real.

What are the benefits of using OpenToonz?

OpenToonz is free and open to everyone. It comes with tools to scan and works well on big projects.

Why is Pencil2D popular among beginners?

Pencil2D is easy for anyone to pick up. It helps draw smooth lines and is good for new animators.

What makes Animaker a powerful animation software?

Animaker has lots of tools and things to use in your animations. You can make your characters and designs look unique.

What are the key features of Animation Paper?

Animation Paper is quick and makes drawings look crisp. It has tools like a light table and lets you zoom in and rotate.

Why is Krita a versatile software for 2D animation?

Krita does more than just paint. It has many brushes for drawing and lets you set up your workspace how you like.