A project has come around that’s finally got me working in Flash (a web animation software package, for those that don’t know) again – which is nice. What with the drive to simplicity and accessibility, Flash animations tend to be specified less than they used to by clients – and in fact this is a project for my main (day job) employer.

It’s not a dreaded intro page (thank goodness), rather an attention-grabbing panel on the front page of the company’s new public website, to be launched on or around 1st August. Up to now, I haven’t put any of the sites I’ve built for my employer into my portfolio page, because this site is mainly about my freelance work, but I may do so with this one, because I’m very pleased with it. Watch this space…

However, the main point of this post is that I worked out a trick with Flash MX (I never upgraded to 2004 or the latest, because I like the MX interface) that has saved me a lot of time.

When you import PNG images into Flash and convert them into movie symbols for use in the main animation, they somehow seem to get ‘smeared’ a bit when you view the animation in a browser. The top and left hand edges seem thicker, and the bottom and right hand sides are a bit further than you want them (by 1 pixel, to be exact).

The solution?

1. Do the import to library as normal.
2. Drag the bitmap from the library to the stage.
3. F8 (convert to symbol).
4. In the dialogue box that lets you decide what kind of symbol to make it, make sure that the registration (origin) corner is the bottom right one. That’s the crucial bit.

That’s it. Easy, eh?

It’s saved me no end of time making images with 1px transparent borders and then positioning them 1px higher and left than I actually want them…