In this tutorial I am going to show you how to create a simple animation in Illustrator using blends. This tutorial involves blending two or more objects together and exporting those blends as swf animations. However, Illustrator’s layer based animation technique is quite powerful and handy than this but you can use this one to create a quick blending animation of the shapes and lines.
Let’s start with creating blends of some objects so create a Circle, a Polygon, a Star and again a Circle on the artboard.
Before blending the objects together, we have to tweak some settings of the Blend tool. So go ahead and double click on the Blend tool to bring up the Blend Options dialog. Under Blend Options dialog, set the Specified Steps to 25 and click OK to accept the changes.
Now, align all the three shapes on the top of each other and press Alt+Ctrl+B on your keyboard to blend them together.
In the last image, blending between the objects is looking quite messy and incorrect. This is due to the overlapping of the objects but if I move all the three objects apart then you can easily see the correct blending between them.
Now, go to File > Export… to bring up the Export dialog. Under Export dialog, provide a name to your file and choose the file format as *.SWF.
Under SWF Options dialog, set Export As option dropdown to AI Layers to SWF Frames. Under advance options, turn on Looping and Animate Blends options.
Under Animate Blends check box you will also find two more options namely In Sequence and In Build. In Sequence option exports each blend as a separate frame however in In Build option, the previous blend will also appear in the next frame. See the comparison below.
Here is our final blending animation. Now, you can easily create animations which involve blending of objects and shapes.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Good luck.