Wick editor is a free tool for creating animations in your web browser. It was recently mentioned in Rushton Hurley’s Next Vista for Learning newsletter and I immediately added it to my favorites when I read about it. This morning, I finally had the opportunity to try.
Wick Editor does not require you to register or log into an account to use it. Simply go to the website and click “Launch Web Editor” to begin. The editor itself doesn’t have a lot of text or menus to tell you what exactly the features are or where they are. You kind of have to click and try things. That said, watch this video tutorial found on the Wick Editor homepage will show you everything you need to get started. I highly recommend taking five minutes to watch this video tutorial before using Wick Editor.
Once I watched the Wick Editor tutorial video, Wick Editor was easy to use. I made a simple animation of a stick figure running across the screen. To do the animation, I used the pencil tool and the onion skin tool in the editor. The pencil tool is exactly what you think it is, a pencil for drawing on the screen. The onion peel tool allows you to achieve a slightly washed out version of your previous frame while drawing on your new frame. This allows you to properly place your designs in order so that they don’t overlap unless you want to. In short, peeling the onion in Wick Editor is like having a sketchbook open so you can see your previous sketch on your left while creating your new sketch on the right.
When you are satisfied with your animation drawings, you can change the speed at which the images play. After setting the playback speed, you can add audio if you want to include it. The completed animations can be saved as MP4 files or GIF files.
Applications for education
Wick Editor reminds me of a slightly more advanced version of Brush Ninja that I have been using and recommending for years. Wick Editor, like Brush Ninja, could be used by students to create animations to illustrate science concepts. Here is an article which I published a few years ago describing the process I used with eighth grade students to make them create animations depicting forms of energy.