Q. What happens when an animator wants to animate an object in Flash, keep the animation smooth, but doesn't want to go through the hassle of frame by frame animation?
A. The animator uses tweens.
What is a tween? Well, a tween in Adobe Flash is basically an animation command. It allows the animator to animate an object without drawing all of the individual frames of a traditional animation. There are three types of tweens in Adobe Flash CS4- classic tween, shape tween, and motion tween. Each tween creates a different effect.
A classic tween is used when making objects fade in and out; or move across a scene. Classic tweens are also used to change the size of an object.
A shape tween is used when a color needs to slowly transition to another or when a shape turns into another shape. Shape tweening can also create some interesting effects when a drawing is turned into a shape, text, or another drawing.
Motion tweens allow for motion of an object by controlling where an object is in on the stage at a particular frame. Motion tweens can be used to create motion over a curved line as well.
Tween animation in Adobe Flash CS4 is relatively easy to use. Just insert your tween of choice in between two keyframes.
The following tutorial video shows you how to create a very basic classic tween and a shape tween. This gives you just the basics. You can be creative with how you use these two types of tweens when you are animating with Adobe Flash CS4.