How to Use the Bone Tool in Adobe Animate

Animating a car zipping across the stage is one thing, but to achieve more natural movements, you'll need to use the Animate Bone Tool. The Bone Tool allows you to create skeletal joint-type connections between shapes.

  1. In this example, a dancing animation will be created. As you can see there are separate shapes for the head, torso, arms, hips and legs.
    Illustration of Shapes
  2. Using the Bone Tool [ Bone Tool ], shapes are connected from one to another. Here I've dragged from the torso to the head.
    Torso-Head Connection
  3. To connect the arms,go to the original starting point on the torso and drag to one of the upper arm shapes. Release the mouse, then click again on that same upper arm shape and drag to the elbow.
    Torso-Arm Connection
  4. For the other arm, go back to the torso start point and repeat. Then connect the torso to the hips, and the hips to each leg.
    Complete Skeleton
  5. Once the skeleton is built, the Selection Tool can be used to move the various shapes to different positions. First, go to the Timeline and click on a future frame, then right-click and choose Insert Pose.
    Insert Pose
  6. Move the shapes around to change the pose on the stage.
    New Pose
  7. Continue inserting poses on the Timeline at future frames, and using the Selection Tool to change the poses on the stage.
Author: Kate Cahill

Kate Cahill is a graphic designer, writer, and creative director who has developed content for print and web. As creative director, she has produced award-winning work for agencies focused on the pharmaceutical and health and beauty aid industries. She has also served as production manager, with responsibility for the successful fulfillment of long-run print contracts. Kate has been delivering training for Webucator clients since 2010. Her enthusiasm for cutting-edge technology, combined with hands-on practical experience, brings an added benefit to her classes. Kate teaches real-world techniques and integration of Adobe software, as well as Microsoft PowerPoint, to produce a fully developed and cohesive brand identity.

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