Photoshop Character Animator

2/15/2022by admin

(Note: This is an older video, so some parts may be outdated in the latest release. See for a more recent getting started tutori. Behaviors in Character Animator; Learn more about Behaviors. Body: directly controlled; Body: auto-animating; Layer swapping; Physical simulations; Utility; Recording and playback. Record and Playback; Refine a recorded performance; Scene cameras; Using Keyframes in Character Animator; Export projects. Export a scene or puppet; Stream a scene.

Add animations to your character and make it move as realistic as possible thanks to a powerful face expression tracker and a reliable motion recorder

What's new in Adobe Character Animator CC 2021 4.0:

  • New example puppet:
  • Hopscotch the Frog is a new example puppet in the Home screen with posable limbs.
  • New robust project file format:
Read the full changelog

Professional 2D animation requires a lot of creativity and solid technological skills, along with industry-leading software tools that can generate realistic motion effects. Following an extensive collaboration with experienced animators, Adobe created its own Character Animator, which allows 2D characters to come to life.

Lip-syncing and webcam-based motion, gesture, and facial expression tracking

Adobe Character Animator provides a new approach to character animation. Combining the power of a robust motion recorder, a face expression tracker, and an advanced lip-syncing algorithm, it enables animators to deliver 2D animations that mimic real human gestures.

Using a high-quality webcam and a headset equipped with a microphone, you can practically make your character copy your movements and facial expressions in real time. The character smoothly transitions from one position to another, while pose-to-pose animation enables it to obtain the effects seen in hand-drawn animations. Furthermore, the application can recognize pupil and eyebrow movements, which is bound to help users obtain more expressiveness for their characters.

Pays attention to details and allows realistic interaction effects between different layers

Attention to details is mandatory in the animation industry, and that is why Adobe Character Animator displays waveform representations of sound, allowing users to carefully adjust the timing of speech and entrance for a character. Moreover, it can collaborate with Adobe Audition for enhanced audio editing capabilities.

Adobe Character Animator implements realistic collision effects, allowing layers to interact with each other dynamically while taking into account gravity, friction, and bounciness. Therefore, users obtain improved control over their artwork, with advanced keyboard triggers.

Obtain high-quality, expressive characters and realistic movement effects

Adobe Character Animator provides advanced control over the behavior of a character, making it much easier to obtain the right face expression in both recorded and live performances.

Already used by animators who design 2D characters for cartoons and even live TV shows, Adobe's application has huge potential that can only be discovered by experimenting with its feature set. It is perfect for frame by frame animation, and it opens up new possibilities to the world of 2D animation altogether.

Although it can deliver impressive results, it is not as intricate as other similar editors. In fact, it eases the work of animators who previously had to combine complex settings in After Effects or some other professional editor.

Filed under

Adobe Character Animator was reviewed by Mihaela Teodorovici
  • Multi-core Intel processor with 64-bit support
  • 8 GB of RAM (16 GB or more recommended)
  • 3 GB of available hard-disk space for installation; additional free space required during installation (cannot install on removable flash storage devices)
  • 1280x1080 display (1920x1080 or larger recommended)
  • Latest qualified graphics driver for your GPU, with at least OpenGL 3.2 support
  • Webcam (for face tracking)
  • Microphone (for audio recording and lip sync)
  • Headphones (to prevent recorded audio takes from being re-recorded in subsequent takes)
  • Internet connection and registration are necessary for required software activation, validation of subscriptions, and access to online services.
  • Adobe account
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Adobe Character Animator CC 2021 4.0

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Adobe Character Animator
Developer(s)Adobe Inc.
Initial releaseJune 15, 2015; 5 years ago
Stable release
Version 4.0 / March 10, 2021
Written inC++, Lua, JavaScript
Operating systemWindows 10 X64 only Version 1809 or later, MacOS 10.13 and later
TypeComputer animation
LicenseTrialware, software as a service

Adobe Character Animator is an Emmy-award-winning[1] desktop application software product that combines live motion-capture with a multi-track recording system to control layered 2D puppets drawn in Photoshop or Illustrator. It is automatically installed with Adobe After Effects CC 2015 to 2017[2] and is also available as a standalone application which one can download separately as part of a Creative Cloud all-apps subscription.[3] It is used to produce both live and non-live animation.


Character Animator imports layered Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator documents into puppets which have behaviors applied to them. The puppets are then placed into a scene, which can be viewed in the Scene panel and Timeline panel. Rigging is set up in the Puppet panel, though basic rigging is fully automatic based on specific layer names like Right Eyebrow and Smile. Properties of selected elements can be examined and changed in the Properties panel, including behavior parameters. Live inputs include a webcam (for face-tracking), microphone (for live lip sync), keyboard (for triggering layers to hide/show), and mouse (for warping specific handles).


Final output of a scene can be exported to a sequence of PNG files and a WAV file, or any video format supported by Adobe Media Encoder. Live output can be sent to other applications running on the same machine via the Syphon protocol (Mac only) or Adobe Mercury Transmit on both Mac and Windows. Scenes can also be dropped directly into After Effects and Premiere Pro, using Dynamic Link to avoid rendering.[4]


Character Animator was originally code-named 'Animal'.[5][6]

The following is the list of versions of Character Animator.

Ship DateVersionShipped withMajor features added
June 15, 2015Preview 1After Effects CC 2015.0 (13.5)markerless face tracking; layered PSD & AI import; WAV & AIFF import; PNG sequence export; WAV export[7]
July 27, 2015Preview 2more accurate face tracking and lip sync; track reordering and snapping in the timeline; transparency grid; improved performance; bug fixes[8][9]
November 30, 2015Preview 3After Effects CC 2015.1 (13.6)“sticks” to control rigidity of the puppet mesh, multi-touch gestures to control character limbs, the ability to share rigged puppets, increased recording flexibility, performance improvements[10]
June 21, 2016[11] (announced April 12, 2016)Preview 4After Effects CC 2015.3 (13.8)visual layer tagging, improved lip sync, export via Adobe Media Encoder, Syphon support, Motion Trigger, Auto Blink[12]
November 2, 2016Beta 5After Effects CC 2017 (14.0)dynamic link to After Effects and Premiere Pro, shareable puppet files, Cycle Pause tag, MP3 import, PNG sequence import, speed improvements[9]
April 19, 2017Beta 6After Effects CC 2017 (14.2)automatic walk cycles, viseme editor, cross-platform live streaming output via Mercury Transmit, layer blending modes, workspace modes, additional languages (Simplified Chinese, Portuguese, Italian, Spanish, Russian, and Korean)[13]
October 18, 2017[14] (announced September 14, 2017)1.1part of Creative Cloud[3]Controls & Triggers panels, MIDI support, pose-to-pose Face & Eye Gaze animation, audio waveform in the timeline, copy and paste of visemes into After Effects, auto-attach, clipping masks, Layer Picker, Fader, Collide & Dynamic tags, improved lip sync[15]
December 11, 20171.1.1minor UI changes and bug fixes[16]
April 3, 20181.5particle physics, scene snapshots, improved triggers UI, copy and paste takes and triggers, countdown before recording, custom Controls panel button art[17]
October 15, 2018[18] (announced September 9, 2018)2.0Characterizer, replays, magnets, squashiness, shoulder and hip tags, history bookmarks[19]
April 3, 20192.1Character Trigger extension for Twitch, jaw movement based on visemes, search filtering for behaviors, UI polish[20]
June 17, 20192.1.1bug fixes[21]
November 4, 20193.0keyframes, scene cameras, triggerable audio, motion lines, rigging issues pane, search filtering for tags and triggers[22]
December 9, 20193.1trigger labels, search filters for project items[23]
February 19, 20203.2keyframe time stretching, replays-related improvements, new keyboard shortcuts, automatic addition of corresponding behavior for Pin, Dragger, and Dangle tools[24]
May 18, 20203.3feedback button, markers over dynamic link, timeline search filter, audio track volume control[25]
June 15, 20203.3.1bug fixes, new icon[26]
October 20, 20203.4speech-aware animation, improved lip sync, limb IK, merge takes[27]
February, 20213.5timeline snapping options[28]
March 10, 20214.0new file format (faster, more compact, and resilient to corruption)[29]

See also[edit]

  • Adobe Animate (formerly Macromedia Flash)

Character Animator Download


  1. ^'Adobe Character Animator Receives Emmy® Award for Technology and Engineering'. Adobe Blog. 2020-01-15. Retrieved 2020-01-18.
  2. ^'An In-Depth Look at Character Animator, Adobe's New Motion Capture & Animation Tool'. 5 July 2015. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ ab'Adobe Creative Cloud features'. Retrieved 27 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^'Adobe Character Animator CC Learn & Support'. Adobe. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^'We've created an Animal - Creative Cloud blog by Adobe'. Digital Video & Audio. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^Kosner, Anthony Wing. 'Adobe Character Animator Lets You Make Cartoons Speak With Face Tracking'. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^'Adobe Character Animator (Preview 1) now available - Creative Cloud blog by Adobe'. Digital Video & Audio. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^'Character Animator (Preview 2) now available - Creative Cloud blog by Adobe'. Digital Video & Audio. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ ab'What's New in Character Animator - Adobe Community'. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^'After Effects CC 2015 v13.6 and Character Animator Preview 3 updates available - CGPress'. CGPress. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^'Character Animator (Preview 4) Makes Animation Easier - Creative Cloud blog by Adobe'. Adobe Creative Cloud. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^'Sneak Peek: What's Coming Next in Character Animator - Creative Cloud blog by Adobe'. Adobe Creative Cloud. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^'Newest Release of Character Animator Adds Simplified, Powerful Workflows - Creative Cloud blog by Adobe'. Adobe Creative Cloud. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^'New Features - Adobe Character Animator CC'. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^Okay Samurai (14 September 2017). 'New Features Preview - September 2017 (Adobe Character Animator CC)'. YouTube. Retrieved 26 October 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^'What's New in Character Animator'. Retrieved 11 December 2017.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  17. ^'Adobe releases Character Animator CC 1.5 CG Channel'. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  18. ^
  19. ^'Introducing Characterizer and More Game-changing Innovation in Character Animator CC'. Retrieved 2018-10-09.
  20. ^'Adobe releases Character Animator CC 2.1'. Retrieved 2019-05-09.
  21. ^'What's New in Character Animator Adobe Community'. Retrieved 2019-07-15.
  22. ^'New features summary for the November 2019 release of Adobe Character Animator'. Retrieved 2019-11-25.
  23. ^'New features summary for the 2019 releases of Adobe Character Animator'. Retrieved 2019-12-11.
  24. ^'New features summary for the 2019 releases of Adobe Character Animator'. Retrieved 2020-02-22.
  25. ^'New features summary for the 2020 releases of Adobe Character Animator'. Retrieved 2020-05-28.
  26. ^'Character Animator 3.3.1 is now available!'. 2020-06-16. Retrieved 2020-08-04.
  27. ^'Adobe releases Character Animator 3.4 CG Channel'. Retrieved 2020-10-24.
  28. ^'Character Animator User Guide'. Retrieved 2021-03-20.
  29. ^'Character Animator 4.0 is live!'. 2021-03-10. Retrieved 2021-03-20.External link in website= (help)

External links[edit]

Character Animator Free

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