Toon Boom Harmony is the industry-leading software for 2D animations. This software is developed by Canadian based company Toon Boom Animation Inc, founded in 1994. This Toon Boom Harmony software is used by many animation producers such as Disney, Nickelodeon, Pixar and among others.
Toon Boom Harmony is an extremely powerful software that help to create TV shows and movies.This software also helps professional artists and hobbyists to create 2D animations for web, short films, television and video games. This effective software transforms artist’s ideas and dreams from concept to screen.
Here we are giving the 5 main key features that helps you to create a high quality animations for your movies, commercials, games and much more. This 5 key features offers more flexibility and saves more time and cost to animators.
1. Advanced Brush Engine & Drawing Tool
This Toon Boom software has an improved drawing engine that allows pencil tools to perform better in vector and bitmap mode. The brush engine helps the artist to create more precise lines when drawing sharp angles.
The drawing engine contains stabilizer tool that reduces shake and irregularities during your drawing. This tool is helpful to maintain smoother lines and curves along with sharp angles. This provides more control over the end result by artist.
The drawing tools are leveled up with isometric projection guide. This guide is mainly used when creating animation for games. Smoothing feature allows you to clean up the line work and reshape the line after completion of drawing. This allows artists to fine tune their art work.
You can create simple cut-out animation by Transform tools in this software. But the forward and Inverse Kinematics feature of this software allows you to create advanced cut-out animation quickly and efficiently.Toon Boom Harmony is the most powerful and flexible tool for rigging in your 2D animation. You can create complex joints for your character and move them around as same like just 3D rigging animation. This saves more time to animator by avoiding to draw new poses on each keyframe.
This deformers tool allows you to deform vector and bitmap drawings over a period of time. This deformers tool linked with cut-out animation helps to produce some stunning results. This effect acts as a skeleton and works well even on textures and gradients. This deform tool provides smoothest texture deformation to enhance quality of your scene.
This technology allows you to take control over area on the bitmap image and create animation by distortion. The Bone deformers allows you to create a basic and advanced skeleton structure in which the character arm movement will squash the biceps accordingly. The curve deformer works well on hair and facial features.
4. 3D/2D Integration
This Toon Boom Harmony software allows you to import 3D model files in to the 2D scene. This is very useful to the animators to take reference from 3D objects and to create complex drawings on background. The 3D integration works well on background objects and vehicles rather than characters.
The 3D capabilities on the background drawings offers multi plane views and creates 3D depth to your 2D animation. This powerful 3D integration tool combined with 2D scene gives better productive result on your animation.
5. Special Effects
You can create special effects such as such as blurs, glows, shadows and transparency filters for your scene to improve your project quality. You can add these special effects by dragging them to the node editor and connecting them into drawing layers. This special effect can be applied on single layer or group of layers as per scene structure.
Particle effects in this software allows you to create atmospheric effects like rain, smoke, fire and much more for your project. This makes fantastic effect to your scene and saves more time to animator. Particle effects are more complex and work as same like other special effects in Harmony.
Price and Final Verdict
This Toon Boom Harmony software is available in three versions based on the advanced features and price points. Let’s see the price and features of each version below.
a) Harmony Essentials – $19 / Month
Easy to use software ideal for students, teacher and great for beginners. This version provides drawing and animation tools for basic animation.
b) Harmony Advanced – $48 / Month
This version is suitable for freelancers, studios and other creators. This software is designed for cut-out animation, Paperless animation for TV series and 2D games.
c) Harmony Premium – $90 / Month
This edition is for professionals, studios and small creative businesses working on demanding projects. This software provides advanced tools for cut-out animation, special effects and compositing.
This Toon Boom Harmony is the perfect solution for profession animators and studio artist to make 2D animation. This software helps you to create a professional and industry standard animation. The learning curve is much steeper and you have to spend more time to learn this software.
Overall The Toon Boom Harmony is the company’s flagship product and quite coolest software on the market for best 2D animation.
You can also read the top 10 Best 2D animation software list here.