Do Ink Animation & Drawing, created by DK Pictures, is an incredible app that brings sophisticated graphic arts tools to any child, anywhere. Do Ink's site states, "We like people, art, and the new." Initially, we were intimidated by this app. When we revisited it, our students were too busy with testing and all that it entails spending the few minutes it takes to utilize this app. In addition, we did not know that Do Ink is also a computer application and can be enjoyed without an iPad. This app has it all, especially when you throw in the term animation! We recommend watching these "how-to" videos before you attempt anything:
Flipbooks are a great way to start using this app and they sure brought back fond memories for us. "From the pre-motion picture era to the origins of animation, cinema, and modern entertainment, flip books are recognized as one of the earliest forms of what today is referred to as interactive multimedia." When the term vector flash was researched http://www.flippies.com/flipbook-history/, a clearer understanding of this engaging cartoon-like art form and the steps involved in executing it, was realized.
Enough of the technical talk, let's have some fun! Trial and error work just fine here, you'll learn from your mistakes. Not that you would call anything you draw or animate a mistake, it may just take a few tries before you get what you want. Here is our first attempt, and yes, an apple, and no, we didn't draw it. Do Ink makes it so easy! We just went to their "props" and found this incredible apple that was already animated. We were left to design a background mix, add a rainbow, play with the timing and looping, then more play with the timing, delete the rainbow... and our creation was complete. Simply amazing! And we do stress simply.
Now, parents and teachers may feel that this is over their heads or too time-consuming. Not the case! Do Ink, when placed in the hands of kids, is a beautiful thing! The drawing tools are completely intuitive and any child with basic computer experience will dive right in. The animation is two fold, you can create single-frame vector artwork or somewhat more complicated frame-by-frame animations. Let's have Do Ink elaborate here, "Vector drawing is as easy as MS Paint, and powerful like Adobe Illustrator. Animate with classic 'flip book' style animation, and graduate to keyframe 'what you drag, is what you get' flash-style animations."
Do Ink obviously has a huge following. Tons of kids are using this tool, as witnessed in their gallery. Now, this app/computer drawing and animation application/program may not be for all kids. As a teacher, I would have been using this in all subject areas, asking kids to show me what they know.