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All spelling mistakes are copyrighted by meeeee, okay they aren't.. flash by macromedia and all respective companies and websites are named are owned by themselves. Yay. If you look for anything specific, hold control and F, or command and F on a Mac I believe, and look for the keyword there.
So let the headache begin ^^:

How to get Flash:

There are 4 ways:
A)Buy it at, the official way. it's expensive tough.

B)Go to shareware websites, like, and get the trial version, so you can try for a month. You probably give up on flash after that time anyway.

C)Finding a bootleg version, which is illegal, so i won't discuss it to save me from trouble ^^;

D)finding a person who owns Flash, and can send it to you with msn/aim, but the file is huge mind you. And this is also illegal I think.. O_o;

This tutorial is based for Flash mx, the other versions might have their tools in a diffrent place, so you have to look for them then X__X


Unless you want to make sprite movies, you need to draw stuff to make a movie. And for some reason, the default drawing settings are programmed by a retarded paperclip brain, so you better start changing a few settings:
In case you don't even have a toolbar, go to windows, and select tools. There are the drawing tools.
You also need the actions tab, to program buttons if you want, properties to adjust transparency or the thickness of the pencil, colour swatches for a default collection of colours, and colour mixer to get custom made colours, and some special colour effects, like having yellow slowly turn to orange or something. Experiment with it yourself.

Now, select the pencil, and see a "pencil mode" in the toolbar. Click on it, and turn straighten into smooth, if you don't want all your drawings to automatically turn into squares (don't ask me why this option is useful, or even default @_@;)
if you click on properties, you can make the pencil thickness a bit bigger, i usually use a 2 or 3 pixel thickness.

Now select the paint bucket tool (when confused, hover your mouse over the tools will reveal teh tool's name) select the weird circle icon down the toolbar and turn "close small gaps" into "close medium gasps". This will make colouring a lot easier (colouring can sometimes be a nightmare in flash, flash seems to have strange glitches sometimes. If a drawing goes mad, select the entire drawing and right click on it, and select "smooth” a few times. This should fix problems.

Right, now your drawing tools are fixed, you should be able to draw now ^^. It should be very similar to paint or most other drawing programs.

forgot to say, but only the white square in the middle of the screen is what you see in the final version, the grey stuff is your work field.

Timeline and tweening:

Those 2 are the difference between a drawing, and an animation. oh, and layers. Quick explanation:

Layers = this makes you able to have a drawing made up from separate parts, so that backgrounds, characters and body parts can move separately from each other.

Timeline = this baby is the one responsible that there is not one drawing, but many drawings , or rearrangements from objects, that give the illusion of movement.
A timeline is made up by frames, every frame is a separate drawing.

Tweening = the actual animating. Some of the frames are key frames, meaning that those frames create a key moment in a movement. So if a character will punch, there are 4 key moments:
arm in normal position, arm pulled back to power up strength, arm forward, when it directly hits the opponent, and the 4th one is the arm back into it's original pose.
If you made a seperate arm drawing, selected, picked the create motion tween (in the insert window) you'll notice the layer with the drawing will become blue. Now, if say, you have 20 frames in the timeline, on frame 20 you pick up the arm, and move it to a different position, Flash will calculate how much the arm moved in every frame between 1 and 20, so it's one fluent movement.

So draw a background on a layer, make a new layer right click on the timeline, select insert new layer) and make sure you selected the new layer, you can draw, let's say, a pie.
Now select create motion tween, and then have to pie on the right side of the screen on frame 1, and on the right side of the screen on frame 20. now press enter, and wheee, there he goes.

Now make more frames, select frame 40 or so, right click the drawing, and select rotate. White symbols will appear around the pie, move your mouse close to one of the corner symbols till your mouse looks like a cornered arrow, and rotate the pie so it's on it's side. now press enter, and now the pie slides trough the background, and then circles on it's side. Hooray.

You can also make the pie bigger or smaller by selecting the scale option.

If you can do this, congratulations! You can make any animation I did pretty much, this is all you need to know, you only need the skills to foresee how all body parts of a character move to make it to a specific move and all. But that's common sense and stuff, can't teach that here. So next chapter:


Yes, very easy actually. go to file, import, then select your audio file on the harddisc, and file throws it into it's library.

Now click on a key frame on the moment the sound has to play (if the import option is unable to be selected, also click on a key frame to make it appear) now go to properties.
See a sound tab? Select it, and there should be a list of all imported sounds. Select one and voila.


If Flash can't import your file, you need to rework it. My favourite technique is by going to your windows sound and volume management
( go to start, all programs, blah blah, entertainment, and select sound recorder. then go to edit, sound properties, volume of recording sound. Now select something like "stereo” or mono"or something that looks like it, and go back to sound recorder)
now the pc will record everything your speakers play. So just play the song you want, while recording in sound recorder, and voila. Flash can import Wav files, and mp3, and a lot more.
Don't forget to put the recording management thing back on microphone if you want to voice acting again ^^;)
for sound effects, try , my favourite place.

Owkay, final thing about sound, you can sound roughly in 2 ways in flash, event and stream. Event is default, and as you could guess, wrong. It's only used for interactions, so if you make a website or so. Stream is for animations. So for the first time you use a sound, in properties, turn event into stream. Now it's default from now on, so don't worry about this anymore. Okay, notice that:

A) soon a keyframe interrupts the sound in the timeline, the sound immediately stops. So make sure you have a few separate audio layers.

B)If a sound file is to loud, the final swf file will turn the loud sound file into an annoying scratching sound, which you might notice sometimes in my movies. To fix it, select the keyframe with the sound file, properties, now select edit, and drag both the square thingies you see a little bit lower. now the volume is decreased (in this menu, you can also have music fade in/out and change volume if the music is louder then the voices and stuff)

okay, final chapter: finishing touch.

first, on the timeline, see "12 fps" there? Double click on it, and you see the properties of teh flashfile, teh fps is the frames per second, how smooth the movie is (better select your fps before animating, or your timing is of.)

you can also select a different colour background, and how the many pixels your work field is. I often increase the height with 30 pixels after I’m done animating, to get extra room for the subtitles (yeah i do these after animating, most flash artists do these immediately when animating but I'm strange and stuff)

for mouth sync, first a useful trick, animating within a graphic. If you draw a closed mouth, and select it, create motion tween, you can double click on it to get inside a new timeline. Now, make more empty frames, on the 4th frame, new keyframe, remove the inside of the mouth. Frame by frame time, select the 2 tiny squares left under the timeline, called onion skin, so future and past frames are transparent.

Now press f6 a few times to ahve the empty mouth in 5 or so key frames, and in every keyframe, draw the teeth moving up a bit more then the previous frame, until the teeth are gone. Colour the just drawn keyframes, and copy paste them again in reverse order after your final keyframe. Now the teeth go up and down. Double click outside the teeth twice, to return to the normal timeline.
The mouth opening and closing animation will repeat endlessly 9this trick is mighty useful for looping animations, like walking and stuff)

When a character talks, put the mouth on the characters face, and check the sound wave on the timeline, you'll see when the voice line’s volume goes up, the wave gets bigger, when the sound file is quiet, the wave goes down. So if you animate the mouth on the face that it's stretched when the volume goes up, and thin when the volume goes down, the mouth should move with the rhythm of the voice line, resulting in the mouth sync you know from my animations. Whee.

Now finally the preloader, you can make one yourself, but the easiest to do is go to, submit, submit flash, and then look for a preloader you can download from them. Just select the third frames' keyframes, where no instructions are, and paste those on your first frame of the flash. Done.

now go to export movie, make sure it's SWF, change other options if you like (instead of mp3 sound compression, i often use ADPCM, that's because with mp3, for some reason, the timing goes off when the movie's getting larger. That's no trouble with ADPCM.

Well, that's the whole basic in flash, i think. With this, you can make any movie i made.
I'm probably a lousy teacher and only gave you a headache, but otherwise, have fun in flash :)

Credits for teaching me Flash:

Flash 4's excellent INTERACTIVE tutorial, what Macromedia for some stupid reason removed from later versions :(

Luc van den Mortel for being better then me :S

Mark, my sister's former fiancée who recommended me to use flash, HOORAY!

I was halfway (err, 10% i think) with animating an entire flash of a flash tutorial, but it's to much work ( i don't mind working hard, but it's just so.. you know..boring, if it's not an action movie with explosions and stuff, but just explaining stuff X__X)
And besides, i felt issues coming miles away, text going to fast, to much information at once, bad quality screenshots, and so on, plus I'm a bit overstressed lately, so I just explain the whole thing in words, it's probably more clear then having a fast flashmovie screaming information at you that you can't follow and have to replay over ando ver again anyway. Okay, keep in mind:

This is NOT a "How to make flash" tutorial. This is a "how does Roger make a flash" tutorial, I probably do a lot of things wrong/awkward, bad, but since people keep asking ME how to do stuff, guess you want to hear the story from me, rather then a diffrent person.

Otherwise, by all means, go here: [link]

So i don't really recommend using this tutorial as the ultimate information of flash.
Actually, i don't recommend using this tutorial at all, but I promised anyway, and it'll save me endless time linking people here instead of explaining the same stuff over and over again.

Also, I only explain the basics, for more specific questions you can ask again. Out of experience, I know myself that soon you know the basics of a program, and understand it's logic, finding new tricks is easy as pie, the only thing i learned by the book myself is tweening, and making buttons, figured the rest out by experimenting myself.

Check the screens in the preview pic as well.
So let the worthless crappy info being!

Okay, the chapters: how to get flash, drawing, tweening and timeline, sound, finishing touch.
Add a Comment:
Jimman117 Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2016
This was interesting, I've always been far more interested in the way that you animate specifically. (the thought that goes into how scenes play out, the writing and comedy, the shortcuts you take and the elements that are most important to you in making a video) I think it's more interesting than an average tutorial that just shows you how to use the program like any other animator. I've always loved your 'Behind the scenes of Sonic title in minutes' for this reason. I'd love to see more content like it.
opticlens Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
whoa whoa need a special program to make a flash!? I thought there was something on deviant art that let you flash... 0.0
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Apr 13, 2013  Hobbyist Filmographer
Nope, it's an external program I'm afraid.
adrianerkul Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2012  Hobbyist Filmographer
ok i don't understand this i need to wacth this when i come home
blazethahedgehog Featured By Owner Oct 3, 2011  Student Filmographer
what version of flash do you use? =/
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Oct 3, 2011  Hobbyist Filmographer
Depends, mostly Flash MX, Flash 8 or Flash cs3
blazethahedgehog Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2011  Student Filmographer
i use cs3.. how dow you import sound i cant find the option
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2011  Hobbyist Filmographer
file- import- import to stage/ library.

That should be it.
Tough depending on how many audio compressions you have installed on your computer, Flash can be really whiny to which files you can import.
blazethahedgehog Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2011  Student Filmographer
ok ill try that thanks
JoelGTDan Featured By Owner Jun 28, 2009  Student Artist
Hey roger speakin of voice acting how do you imported everytime I tried it alway say One or more files were not imported because there was a problems reading them and so agravating to see that pop up
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Jun 28, 2009  Hobbyist Filmographer
Must be the file extension, Flash can't comprehend every audio type, so save it as Wav's or mp3 files
JoelGTDan Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2009  Student Artist
oh thanks man, I think that really helps.
Mr-Flop Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2008
HoLy CRAP!! XD .... It sux u have 2 download stuff...Now it makes scense y i cannot make a flash movie...
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Jul 26, 2008  Hobbyist Filmographer
Jup, sadly there's few things you can pull out of thin air.
I guess you can use windows movie maker for animation tough, that's free and on the computer.
Don't ask me how that works tough,
Mr-Flop Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2008
Mr-Flop Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2008
XD! How do i add this 2 my favs??
Mr-Flop Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2008
ignore that comment...:o
Mr-Flop Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2008
...It....kinda helped....thanx
De-mose Featured By Owner May 26, 2008
Useful thing, thnx, Roger!
InfernalPyschosis Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Errr.....Ch 3 zzzzzz
electrodude102 Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2008  Hobbyist
VERY useful
miky85 Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2007  Student
VampireMeerkat Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
Nou ja, aangezien dat je redelijk grote filmpjes maakt, kun je me alstublieft zeggen HOE DE HELLZ je dat doet?

Ik heb get probleem dat als ik, bij gewoon 1 scene, over 500 frames animeer, of daar in de buurt, flash te sloom wordt voor woorden. Elk streepje dat ik zet heeft tie zo'n beetje 10 seconden voor nodig, en dat geldt eigenlijk voor elke actie die ik doe.

Enigste wat ik zelf kon verzinnen was gewoon meerdere scenes maken met minder frames, maar dat werkt eigenlijk ook voor geen neus, want als ik in totaal toch weer 500 frames (of iest) heb, doet het programma net zo sloom. Ik ben al 3 jaar aan het rond vragen, en geen enkele ''grote'' flashfilmmaker vond het nodig om te reageren
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2007  Hobbyist Filmographer
Dat probleem heb ik met Flash 8.
Mijn computer kan dit niet aan.
probeer een oudere versie van Flash, zoals MX, die gebruik ik.
Ook kun je geloof ik ergens de kwaliteit van de vector graphics wat omlaag halen zoals je dat kan in SWF files, maar daar weet ik niet zoveel van. In MX kun je dat bij edit -> Preferences, en in die optie scherm wat rotzooien, maar bij elke Flash editie zitten alle opties weer op een andere plek, dus ik kan je helaas weinig aanwijzingen geven hier.

Heh,als bekende flash animator krijg je eenmaal 50 emails met "leg Flash uit!" per dag, vandaar dat ik ook dit uit typ, om lui de link te geven. Alleen specefieke vragen ga ik echt uitleggen, en die had je, dus voila. Hoop dat het helpt :S
VampireMeerkat Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Ik heb Flash professional MX, die doet dat wel :S Ik weet nog wel toen ik voor het eerst Flash 5 had, die had dat soort problemen niet.
Nou ja, dan probeer ik met die Vector Graphics te prutsen, als dat er is
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2008  Hobbyist Filmographer
Flash is altijd met vector graphics.
Daarom kun je objecten getekend in Flash zo groot of klein maken als je wilt zonder dat het van die vage blokken worden, zoalsjpeg.

Tja, kan je helaas weinig helpen in dit geval.. Mischien heb je teveel objecten in je filmpje en raakt ie daarvan overstuur
VampireMeerkat Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Nou, wat wel vaak zo is dat ik de neiging heb elke frame (teminste de meeste) apart te tekenen, maar dat moet toch gewoon kunnen.
Blijkbaar niet dan :[ nha ja, ik zal wel vanavond even kijken
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2008  Hobbyist Filmographer
voor de personages zou dat niet moeten uitmaken, ik gebruik fbf animatie zelf ook welles.
maar ook de achtergrond?

Nu ik eraan denk trouwens, heb je alleen wat precies in beeld is in flash, of draag je alle objecten en achtergronden constant mee in de hele film?
Dan kan ie ook vertragen..
VampireMeerkat Featured By Owner Jan 5, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
ach ja, soms wel, soms niet. Bijvoorbeeld achtergrondkleuren (verschillende kleuren lucht) wel
Static101 Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2007
I can't belive it took me 2 weeks to learn how to make Characters move... ^^; XD
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Aug 15, 2007  Hobbyist Filmographer
don't worry, it took me 2 weeks of screaming and cursing to get a crude basic movie done too ^^;
Flash ain't easy, but as soon as you got the basics down, progress will go much faster.
Cheesemaniac Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2007
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2007  Hobbyist Filmographer
le gasp, i made a spelling mistake?
Whew, good thing the very first sentence warns people for it, otherwise many might have died of an heart attack.
Carrottime Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2007
i got meself speakonia, but none of the "wav" files i make work.
FlyingMonkeyofOz Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2007
hey! The FindSounds site is brilliant, cheers! But I can't download anything from it! Is it not all downloadable?
Could you help me out here? :-)
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2007  Hobbyist Filmographer
well you left click on the sound to hear it, then go back and right click on the button you pressed and "select save as", or whatever variation there is on your computer.
FlyingMonkeyofOz Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2007
Ah! Thanks !
Ardhamon Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2006  Student Traditional Artist
Gon't worry my dad has flash on his laptop so I'll ask him to trnsfer it to our computer so I can try to make flash movies.
JohnJensen Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2006
I can't zoom in on the pic.
Hephaestus-Hedgehog Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2006
QUESTION TIME!! how do you make a button or any kind of interactivity?
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2006  Hobbyist Filmographer
actionscript needed for that.
Click on a frame, go to actions, select the stop action.
now the movie stops at that point.
draw a drawing, select it completely, press f8 and select button. Now it's a button. Click on the button, go to actions, select the "go to" action and fill in a scene and frame number, and the viewer goes to that scene when pushing on the button.
that's all the interactivty i know, and used for everything, even the punchbag game.
Hephaestus-Hedgehog Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2006
oh, and beforeI forget. How do u do the mouths?
Wesley999 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2006
well any of this will work on Flash 8?
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2006  Hobbyist Filmographer
yeah but all stuff is in a diffrent place.
Hephaestus-Hedgehog Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2006
My problem is it's not letting me draw on the second layer. Even though I already created it.
Rogerregorroger Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2006  Hobbyist Filmographer
weird i never had that.
can't help, just click on it clearly, should work.
Machineguntimz80 Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2006
Thanks o lot Roger this should fine!
dark-poppit Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2006  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
i never make a flash movie one flash that i make flash a movie once call ILP COMING but is so fast you help i send it for you
vertMB Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2006   Filmographer
I don't know why I read it, I've managed to make a crappy flash. O.o
That was good, but a bit boring, mind why am I reading a boring tut when I could be watching one of your exciting movies? O.o
...I'm wierd. ^^;

Very useful though. ^^
Elarith Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2006
This i think is actually quite a handy flash tutorial for those who need a bit more help using it....

You explained the stuff very well!
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