MASKS and MOTION GUIDES - The Beach Ball Exercise

LAYERS within a symbol
Symbols can be treated like mini Flash Illustration projects within the big Flash project.
Symbols have complete TIMELINES and LAYER SETS within them, all encapsulated within the symbol object This allows you to have:
  • Multiple Layers within a symbol
  • Layer Masks

You can use this FLASH file for this exercise



Creating a MASK layer above an image can allow you to create transparency around the part of the image you really want to keep
  • Place an image on the stage and name the layer appropriately (ie "Image")
  • Create a new layer above the image layer, and call it "Mask"
  • Draw a shape (like a circle for a soccer ball) in the mask layer over the part of the image you want to stay opaque
  • RIGHT mouseclick the MASK layer and select the MASK toggle

Your image should now show through as defined by the mask layer
Note that both layers are now "locked" together. You can still edit either the layer, but you'll have to unlock them. They must be locked again to impose the mask.



A motion guide can act like a "rail" or train track that your tweened symbol has to follow
  • Place the soccer ball on it's own layer in front of a background layer
  • RIGHT mouseclick the ball layer and ADD A CLASSIC MOTION GUIDE
  • Draw a simple line on the guide layer that passes through the reference (rotation) point of the symbol and goes off into the distance
  • You can curve the line if you'd like
  • Tween the object so that it moves to another point on the motion path. As long as the reference point starts on the "rail", the tweened object should follow the path

  • The guideline MUST be intact in the proper guide layer, and NOT grouped
    (be careful that the layer is a TRUE Guide Layer - it should have an icon of an arc - not a ruler)
  • The tween MUST start and finish on the rails
  • The line must be fairly simple, with no intersections or criss crosses
    (be careful that there aren't any breaks, or extra lines at the old intersection points)

The Bouncing Ball Exercise
The objective is to make illustrated objects of various density appear to move believably on the screen.

  • Create a symbol from a bitmap using masks
  • Create classic tween motion to have the object move across the stage
  • Add a classic motion guide and modify the motion to make the object bounce