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How to Animate Procreate Dreams Text in 6 Easy Steps

Want to learn how to animate Procreate Dreams text? In this video and blog post, I’ll review all of the Procreate Dreams text settings and create a Procreate Dreams animating text demonstration. I’ll also provide an overview of how to use the Procreate Dreams text tool, move text in Procreate Dreams, scale it, rotate it, add effects, and animate it.

By the end of this tutorial, you’ll know everything you need to animate Procreate Dreams text.

Step #1: Create a New Procreate Dreams Scene

To create a new scene in Procreate Dreams, touch the plus icon at the top right.

Create a new Procreate Dreams Text Animation project

From the resulting popup screen, set your resolution by touching the 4K symbol. If you want a different size, flick your finger up or down on the screen to view additional options.

If you touch the three buttons at the top right of the resolution screen, you can set your frames per second (FPS) and your animation duration.

When you are finished adjusting your settings, tap the Draw button to create the scene. Project settings can always be changed later from within the scene by touching the project name and selecting the Properties button.

For this demonstration, select the 4K widescreen project option and click the Draw button. This will take you into the project, but then return to the Theater by tapping the Theater button on the left, which is above the timeline.

Press and hold on the new project’s name (ex. Dreams 8.dream) and choose the Rename option from the popup menu.

Change the name of the project to Animated Text. Click Done to finalize the project name.

Tap the project thumbnail to enter the project. Tap on the new project name on the left above the Timeline to open the Properties options.

Tap the Duration option and change the time to 2 seconds in the popup numpad. Tap outside the numpad to finalize the time. Click Done at the top right to exit the Properties screen.

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Step #2: Add Procreate Dreams Text to the Scene

Touch the plus icon at the right of the screen. From the popup menu, select the Text option to use the Procreate Dreams text tool, which adds text content to your scene as a new track on the timeline.

The text track consists of a textbox that includes the placeholder word “Text.” A menu is also open above the text that allows the following actions:

  • Cut
  • Copy
  • Paste
  • Select
  • Select all
  • Edit style

The keyboard also opens so you can type new text into the textbox. If the menu or keyboard closes, you can reopen them by double-tapping the text.

Tap into the textbox to highlight the text and type the word “POW!”

The textbox isn’t big enough to hold the text, so the text extends onto two lines. To fix this, expand the textbox by touching the dot on the left side or the right side of the bounding box (the red outline around the text) and drag it horizontally.

Step #3: Choose a Font and Format the Text

If you touch the Edit style option in the menu above the text, you will open the text style editing tools. You can also touch the Aa button at the top right of the Procreate Dreams keyboard. At the top of this new screen area, you have access to two tabs, Fonts and Format.

Fonts Tab

In the Fonts tab, you can choose from existing fonts by scrolling through the Typeface section. You can also choose from that font’s variations in the Fonts section, if available. Not all fonts offer variations. These menus include fonts already installed on your iPad.

You can import a font by tapping the Import option and selecting a new font from your files. You can also select a font color from the color wheel.

The font I’ll be using is Browood, which is a font free for personal use. You’ll need to download the font and unzip it before you can import it.

Font download

Once you have imported the font, double-tap on the word to select it and choose the Browood font.

Also, change the color of the font to blue and click the Done button.

Format Tab

In the Format tab, you can change a variety of text settings, including:

  • Size: The size of the text.
  • Kerning: The space between two characters.
  • Tracking: The space between all characters.
  • Leading: The space between lines of text.
  • Baseline: The invisible line on which the text sits. When you adjust the baseline, you raise or lower where the text is in relationship to that line, resulting in space being added above or below the text.
  • Alignment: Align the text within the textbox, including left, right, center, or justified (aligns the text evenly between the margins).

Additional settings include the ability to:

  • Set all caps
  • Create outlines
  • Underline text
  • Strike through text
  • Make text vertical

Adjust the tracking to -12% so the characters are overlapping. Also, tap the Center button so that the text is centered within the textbox, then click the Done button.

Step #4: Adjust the Text on the Timeline

You have access to several text options in the timeline. To view those, drag the playhead to the beginning of the track and tap the playhead to open the Action! menu.

The Action! menu gives you access to the Move, Filter, and Edit tabs.

Move Tab

The Move tab provides three options:

  • Move and Scale
  • Warp
  • Distort

Move and Scale

The Move and Scale setting allows you set a keyframe and then animate the text’s scale, location, and rotation.

To change the location, touch the text to display the bounding box. Press and hold to drag the text around the stage.

To scale the text, touch the text to display the bounding box and drag one of the corners.

To rotate the text, tap one of the corners. The rotation icon will be displayed, which is a small, gray curve. You can touch and hold the curve icon to rotate the text.

Warp

The Warp setting allows you to manipulate the text by dragging the points of a grid. Grid settings can be set between 4 and 8.

Distort

The Distort setting allows you to manipulate the text by dragging points at the corner of the bounding box.

Note: Warp and Distort cannot be used together on the same object.

Filter Tab

The Filter tab provides five actions you can animate:

Opacity: Change the transparency of the text. 

Gaussian Blur: Change the softness and blurriness of the text.

Sharpen: Sharpen soft edges.

Noise: Add speckle and grain to the text.

The Noise option has an additional set of settings you can access by clicking the Advanced Noise button. These settings allow you control:

  • Offset X: Shift the noise horizontally across the X axis.
  • Offset Y: Shift the noise vertically across the Y axis.
  • Travel: Shift the noise forwards and backwards through the Z axis. (While Procreate Dreams is a 2D program, the noise is generated in a 3D space.)
  • Additive: Toggle additive noise on and off. When on, the noise is transparent and allows your text color to show through the noise. When off, the noise is opaque and blocks the color of the text.
  • Multichannel: When off, the noise is monochromatic (only one color). When on, the noise is multicolored.

HSB: Change the hue, saturation, and brightness of the text.

Edit Tab

The Edit tab provides the Split function, which allows you to split a single track into two tracks.

Step #5: Set a Keyframe and Animate the Text

Set the First Keyframe

To set a keyframe, drag the playhead to the location in your track where you want to insert the first keyframe.

Tap the playhead to open the Action! menu. You can then choose an action, such as the Move and Scale option from the Move menu. A keyframe is then automatically set, which is shown by an icon being added to the track below the playhead. You can then manipulate the text (move, scale, rotate, etc.).

If you need to further adjust the keyframe, you can tap the keyframe’s icon to open the keyframe properties.

Set the Second Keyframe

Drag the playhead to the next location and tap the playhead to set a new keyframe for the same action. You can also adjust the text at the new location and a keyframe will be set automatically.

Adjust the Interpolation/Easing

When two keyframes are set, you can press and hold between them to open a new menu that provides different options depending on the type of settings you adjusted (ex: the Move and Scale keyframes menu includes the Expand Move and Scale option). No matter which additional settings are available, you will always have the option to adjust the easing.

Easing options include:

  • Linear: The text maintains the same speed throughout the animation.
  • Ease In: The text starts slow and is faster at the end. 
  • Ease Out: The text starts fast and is slower at the end.
  • Ease In and Ease Out: The text starts slow, speeds up, is fastest in the middle, and slows down at the end.

Step #6: Step-by-Step Timeline Process Demonstration

Warp the Text

The first change I want to make to the text is to add a warp effect to create a more dynamic appearance.

With the playhead at the start of the text track, tap the playhead, select the Move option, and select Warp. Drag the top two center dots and the two bottom center dots up, which will give the text a curved appearance.

Adjust the Text Anchor

The next step is to animate the scale of the text. However, because the text is warped, the bounding box has changed and extended beyond the text, which means the anchor has moved.

The location of the anchor is important because when you move, scale, or rotate the text, Procreate Dreams uses the anchor as the center point of the action.

By default, the anchor is set to the center of the bounding box. For this animation, the anchor point needs to be moved from the center of the bounding box to the center for the text.

To edit the location of the anchor, tap the text to display the bounding box. Tap the three dots at the top right of the bounding box. This opens a menu with additional transform options, including:

  • Flip horizontal
  • Flip vertical
  • Edit anchor

Touch the anchor, which looks like a white cross, and drag it to the new point.

When the anchor is in the new location, click the Done button.

Animate the Scale of the Text

With the playhead still at the beginning of the text track, tap the playhead, select the Move option, and select Move and Scale. Touch one of the corner dots and drag it in to reduce the size of the text so that it is too small to see.

Drag the playhead to frame 18. Tap the text to display the bounding box. Touch the edge of the bounding box and drag it out so the words expand beyond the stage.

Drag the playhead to frame 24. Tap the text to display the bounding box. Touch the edge of the bounding box and drag it in so the words fit within the stage.

Adjust the Easing

Adjust the easing by pressing and holding between the keyframes. From the popup menu, select Set All Easings. Choose the Ease In option so the animation is slower at the beginning and faster at the end.   

Change the Background Color

Tap the timecode, select the Background Color option from the popup menu, and choose yellow from the color wheel.

Add Retro Halftones to the Background

To create a more retro look, download the following free comic halftone brushes and unzip the file:

Brushes download

In Procreate Dreams, tap the Draw and Paint icon to enter Draw and Paint mode.

The icon will turn red.

Drag the Grallys 90 Degree Dot brushes into Procreate Dreams and drop them on the stage.

Select an existing track or add a new track by clicking the plus icon at the right and selecting Track.

On the stage, tap the Brush icon to open the brush selection menu, scroll down to the Grally’s 90 Degree brushes, tap the LARGE – 90 Degree Halftone/Dot 5 brush to select it.

Tap the color wheel and choose a yellow slightly darker than the background color. Increase the brush size to 100%.

Paint across the stage in one motion to completely cover it with a halftone texture. Tap the Draw and Paint icon again to leave that mode.

If the painted track is only extended by one frame, press and hold the frame. From the resulting popup menu, select the Fill Duration option.

Rotate the Text

Tap the Move and Scale keyframe at the beginning of the timeline. From the resulting popup numpad, you can see the rotation is set to 0.

Tap on the keyframe at frame 18. Tap the Rotate value. From the popup numpad, type 360. Tap outside of the numspad to finalize it.

Tap on the keyframe at frame 24. From the resulting popup numpad, you can see the rotation is set to 0.

With these settings, the text will rotate a complete turn between frame 1 and frame 18. The text will then rotate back a complete turn between frame 18 and frame 24.

Add Sound

Download the free audio file from the following site:

Audio download

To add the audio file to the project, click the Add button at the top right of the timeline and select Add Track.

With that track selected, click the Add button again and select Files. Navigate to the location on your iPad where the audio file is saved. Select the audio file and tap the Open button at the top right of the popup screen.

This audio file includes three sounds, but only one is needed for this project.

Drag the playhead between the first waveform and the second waveform.

Tap and hold on the playhead. From the popup menu, select the Edit option and select Split. Tap and hold on the second track. Choose Cut from the popup menu to remove the second track.

Drag the playhead to frame 18, which is where the text is at its largest size. Press and hold on the audio file and drag it until the highest part of the audio waveform is at frame 18.

Tap the play button to view the animation.

Preview Mode

If you want to view the animation in full screen, press your left index finger on the stage and then tap with the three fingers on your right hand to enter Preview mode. Tap the screen to toggle displaying the playback controls.

Press your left index finger on the stage and then tap with the three fingers on your right hand to exit Preview mode.

Final Thoughts

You should now have a complete understanding of how to create animations using Procreate Dreams text, as well as learned some helpful Procreate Dreams tips and tricks.

If you have questions about using Procreate Dreams text or have other Procreate Dreams questions, send me a message through the Contact page.

Want to see additional Procreate Dreams tutorial videos? Check out the following Procreate Dreams trainings:

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