What software is used in the Anime industry?
It is a given fact that anime studios will use well-known industry standard software to complete an anime production. The ease and smoothness is dependent on the software and modification(s) implemented by each studio. But for those who want the basics to help enter the anime industry but don't know where to start, this blog would be a starter-pack to knowing the software anime studios use.
CLIP STUDIO PAINT & RETAS STUDIO SUITE:
Clip Studio Paint is among the household names for anime production. Its first introduction was by Toei Animation for "Kado: The Right Answer"which aired in April 2017. For animators who prefer to work on paper, there's also an app called TraceMan HD, which optimises the chore of scanning in and vectorising paper line art.
OpenToonz is another anime production software developed by Digital Video S.p.A. in Italy and has been customised and used by Studio Ghibli. As stated on OpenToonz website, it is an open source software targeted towards beginners and professionals working in the anime industry. OpenToonz is an established and stable software and is currently being utilised by Dwango who "...has launched the OpenToonz project in cooperation with Digital Video and Studio Ghibli."
For colouring, there is PaintMan HD. Paintman is similar to Photoshop where it utilises gradients and alpha-channels, however for more specialised special effects work, Adobe Photoshop is used here too. Once the sequences are finalised, they are gathered and imported into a compositing software. This is to combine the backgrounds with the sequences and choreograph each shot with the intended camera motion. For more advance techniques, software like Adobe After Effects would be used with plug-ins. Plug-ins tend to be developed directly for industry purposes. If 3D is a necessity, most of the work is completed with Autodesk 3Ds Max or Maya with custom plug-ins.
Adobe Premiere Pro or Adobe Media Composer is used for visuals when sequences are exported. To make sure each cut is timed accurately audio, pencil tests are carried out. Once done, the shots are gradually replaced with the final composited versions.
With software development moving fast, it is very important to keep up with current trends and technology within the industry, otherwise one would get left behind.