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  • Writer's pictureGeorge Samuels

How To Play Your Video References Frame-By-Frame

A lot of aspiring or beginner animators usually don’t know how to playback video references frame-by-frame (typically referred to as ‘fbf’) for referencing purposes. Now, with anything, doing your research always helps, but this article aims to provide you with a little boost to get you started.

Playing back videos fbf allows you to break-down shot sequences for each frame. Observing the flow and rhythm is a really important part of this practice. With time, you’ll be able to get a better sense of time when animating to 24 fps (the standard amount of frames for one second of film).

Some people have asked us how to run our animation videos frame-by-frame, and download them in MP4 format, so here is a collective answer to all. We have some sections where you can see our videos frame-by-frame and paused without the play button. The following was taken from the Reference! Reference! Reference! Facebook page:

To download the videos in this sections, is just right click with mouse button. In Firefox, the format of the videos is OGV. Try Google Chrome for MP4 format.

Another sections like these will come in the future when we have the resources to update the site. We are currently looking for ways to sponsor these updates.

Playing FBF On Mac

For Mac users, you can also take any of your favorite movies, play it in Quicktime, and then move through each frame using the left and right arrow buttons on your keyboard.

Playing FBF On PC

For PC users, you can use Windows Media player: 1) Start playing the video file you have, it can be a unfinished WMV file you have created or a recently bought DVD.

2) Click the View menu located along the top of your Windows Media Player Window

3) Click on Enhancements

4) Then click Play Speed Settings

5) Once the enhancements pane loads up you can either select the previous frame button or the next frame button.

NOTE: Not all video can be played back one frame at a time in Windows Media Player, to return the player back to normal speed press the playbutton in the bottom pane. Reference here.

Tips From Other Animators

“Media player classic has a button that everytime you click it goes through a frame. only annoying thing is you have to keep clicking and there is no on or off button for it, which isn’t bad though.” ~Mandela Jerome Komba

Hope that helps you with your next animation work!


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