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I'd like to make a simple movie with my kids. I've taken some pictures of toys and cropped them to be the characters. I'd like to make a movie where these move against some background (ie the characters themselves are not animated but move "as a whole"). Finding such a program seems beyond my search capabilities.

Does anyone know of a good program for doing this, preferably one that is simple enough that my (young) kids can follow along with what I'm doing (I wouldn't go so far as to expect them to be able to do it, but it needs to be close enough that they won't get bored; so blender is probably not suitable).

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...categorizing thread here. –  hhh Dec 30 '12 at 2:09
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5 Answers

I don't sure but probably you can use animate from ImageMagick package. See usage examples here: http://www.imagemagick.org/Usage/anim_basics/

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At first sight, that looks as though I first have to generate all the images and then that puts them together. What I want is a system which will interpolate between a starting and ending position. –  Loop Space May 15 '11 at 18:43
    
@AndrewStacey please, see my answer. The interpolation has a technical name morphing. The animation has a technical name stop motion (or stop frame). –  hhh Dec 30 '12 at 1:54
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I think stopmotion is the technique you are looking for. After a short search I found this application, maybe this might help you. But I guess there are several other similar tools around.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I ended up using GIMP with the GAP plugin. Once I got used to it, it worked very nicely for what I wanted to do.

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Could you share a demo about your goal and your end-product? I am trying to categorize things here -- there seems to be many similar threads about the same topic... –  hhh Dec 30 '12 at 1:10
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Perhaps one of these applications are to your liking:

2D-animation:

Stop motion:

Friendly programming oriented towards graphics:

They are all readily available in Arch Linux.

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Have you tested any and could you recommend some of them? Is the stop-motion anything like the stop-motion in Adobe After-Effects like here? –  hhh Dec 30 '12 at 1:21
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At first sight, that looks as though I first have to generate all the images and then that puts them together. What I want is a system which will interpolate between a starting and ending position.

enter image description here

The key word you are looking for is morphing, the wikipedia article here. You can use ImageMagick to do the morphing like

convert -morph 9 -size 321x241 in1.png in2.png test.png

where you will get 9 interpolations (9 pieces of pictures between the ending pictures). You can change the morphology kernel with -morphology command, more here.

System?

Tools such as Adobe After Effects and Blender are more professional options. Echograph in iPad/iPhone is a child-friendly option. If you want to do this system yourself or like more crafty options, you need things such as motion blur, morphing, stop motion and probably some other things such as GUI/UI design. For the software, I would use ImageMagick or some wrapper built-on-top of it, depending on the requirements.

If you want to use 3D software such as Blender, you need a proper mouse with wheel and at least 3 buttons -- and keyboard with keypad is a big plus.

P.s. Feel free to help categorizing this kind of threads here.

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