Online Manual Get the Animator's Toolbar Pro   Changelog

What is the Animator’s Toolbar?

The Animator’s Toolbar is a Photoshop panel for Animators, which provides access to the Timeline functions with the click of a button and extends Photoshop’s timeline capabilities. Like the promo says: “if you handle the animation, the Animator’s Toolbar Pro will handle the layers. By design Photoshop will only allow you to work on one layer at the time.When it comes to moving, duplicating, ordering, labeling, naming or merging layers on the timeline, Photoshop can really use some help. It is safe to say that the ability to process multiple layers is one of the Animator’s Toolbar Pro’s strongest selling points.

Why animate in Photoshop?

It might seem counter-intuitive to use a program like Photoshop to create animations. Why would one turn to Photoshop with very capable and specialized programs like Animate CC and After Effects in the same suite? The answer to that question may sound just as counter-intuitive:  It’s because of the Limitation and Control

Photoshop will animate for you just as much as a blank piece of paper will, but it does provide the tools you need to create images exactly how you envision them. If you can draw or paint it, it can be animated. The Animator’s Toolbar is there to help you accommodate and structure the sheer amount of layers and frames needed to create beautiful animations.

Toolbar Functions


  • New Animation Project
  • Toggle Timeline Shortcuts
  • Toggle Favourite, ⌥Set Favourite


  • Paste Special, ⇧ Skip Auto Merge
  • Clear Layer Content, ⌥ Split and Clear*
  • Create Hold


  • Apply Colour Label, ⇧ Label as “Key”*, ⌥ Create “Key”*
  • Apply Colour Label, ⇧ Label as “Extreme”*, ⌥ Create “Extreme”*
  • Apply Colour Label, ⇧ Label as “Breakdown”*, ⌥ Create “Breakdown”*
  • Apply Colour Label, ⇧ Label as “Inbetween”*, ⌥ Create “Inbetween”*
  • Apply Colour Label, ⇧Name Reset*, ⌥ Clear content+Name Reset*


  • Blank Frame After, ⇧Blank Frame Before*, ⌥ Duplicate Frame
  • Add one Exposure, ⇧ Remove one Exposure, ⌥ Input*
  • VideoGroup Selected, ⌥ Ungroup
  • Reverse Selected Layers/Frames


  • Trim Start, ⇧ Move, ⌥ Trim Start + Sequence Selected Layers*
  • Split, ⌥ Split + Clear Layer Content*
  • Trim End, ⇧ Move, ⌥ Trim End + Sequence Selected Layers*
  • Roll Edit


  • Set Start Work Area, ⇧ Go to Start of Work Area
  • Reset Work Area
  • Set End Work Area, ⇧ Go to End of Work Area
  • Step Backward ⇧ Goto First
  • Goto Time/Frame
  • Step Forward ⇧ Goto Last
  • Toggle Union Skin ⌥ Union Skin Settings
  • Toggle Fit/Zoom, ⇧ Zoom 100%

Get the Animator’s Toolbar here for free!

*available in the Animator’s Toolbar Pro


29 thoughts on “The Animator’s Toolbar

  1. Christopher says:

    The Animators Toolbar 3.0 installed via Adobe Add-ons page doesn’t work in Photoshop 2015.5 ?

  2. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Not yet. A new version has been submitted and will probably be approved in the coming weeks.

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  4. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    CS6 and older CC versions are no longer available online. There are plans for a new CS6 release but there is no hard release date.

  5. Jesus says:

    Ah that’s fine. Thanks for even considering a CS6 version. I know many people don’t use it anymore. Looking forward to new version when it comes out!

  6. SMT says:


    I’ve tried adding the extension both through my CC account and through the extension manager. The manager doesn’t recognize the .zxp file (I can’t just unzip it) and it’s not been showing up in the extensions drop-down inside PS 2015.5.1. I’m not sure if this is the problem above commenters are talking about – if so, sorry for redundancy. Any word on a fix / when there will be an update to make it workable?

  7. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    The above comments are about the previous version, back when Photoshop changed from 2015 to 2015.5. Extension manager does not work because it is deprecated. zxpinstaller is your best option if you want to install the zxp file manually.

    The only installation issues I know of involved the ‘enterprise licence’ of Photoshop.

  8. kitkats says:

    +1 for a CS6 version. This looks great, but I don’t really need Photoshop CC, and from what I hear it’s more unstable than CS6.

  9. Bonifacius says:

    How can I add my own shortcuts to the timeline options? like If I want to add a blank frame with f7 and extend it with f5 (like in Adobe Flash)…?

  10. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Hi Bonifacius,
    Thank you for your interest in my toolbar. Currently there is no option to manipulate the Animator’s Toolbar with keyboard shortcuts. At this time I’m working on a paid/pro version of the toolbar that comes with little scripts that can be assigned to keyboard shortcuts.

  11. Johnny says:

    This looks awesome and is exactly what I’ve been looking for! I will be more than willing to purchase the pro version when it becomes available. It would be really helpful to have some YouTube videos to learn how to use it.

  12. Tom says:

    Hi. Just tried to install Animators Toolar to PS 2017.0.1 using the Add-on and when this failed using Extension Manager for CC. Is this supposed to work?

  13. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Hi Tom,

    Extension Manager has been deprecated since cc 2015 so that is not an option. The Animator’s Toolbar is compatible with PS 2017.0.1 and should install from the Creative Cloud. Since you downloaded the zxp file, zxp installer is also an option.

  14. judith says:

    I downloaded AnimatorsToolbar_3_0_5.zxp and the ZXPInstaller.dmg. The installation failed because “the ZXPInstaller could not check the license online.” Is there a way to resolve this issue? Photoshop CC version 14.1.22 is what I have on a Mac OSX Yosemite. Thank you.

  15. Patrick says:

    Really having a hard time getting this installed on Photoshop 2015.5 for pc. I have gone to the adobe site and acquired it, but it does not show up on the machine. any help would be greatly appreciated.

  16. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Hi Judith,

    It should be compatible with your version of Photoshop. Lately there have been mixed results with ZXP installer.
    I’ve switched to the Anastasiy’s Extension Manager which can install (and uninstall) the plug-in.

    If you are using an enterprise licence you could try to make a personal adobe id and use that to acquire the plugin. After installation the toolbar will also be available to the enterprise licence.

    Hope that helps.


  17. Greg says:

    My timeline shortcuts are enabled but don’t work.

    Any chance this could be related to the installation of the animator’s toolbar?

    If you’re aware of another reason please let me know!

  18. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Hi Greg,

    Timeline shortcuts are native to Photoshop. The Animator’s Toolbar has no influence on them other that turning them on or off but does not do so unless you click the “toggle keyboard shortcuts” button.

  19. Vanessa says:

    Hey there,

    I’m dying to try this out, but I can’t get it to work at all on my computer. I’m on a Mac, running Yosemite 10.10.5. I’m trying to use the regular unpaid version, which says it’s compatible with CC – 2017.

    So far I’ve tried it with PS versions 2014, 2015.5 (17.0.2), and 2017 (18.1). I have creative cloud set to sync files and I’ve followed all instructions for how to troubleshoot an add-on that won’t install. It never appears in the extensions menu no matter what I try. I’ve also tried downloading the file and installing via the extension manager, but I get the following error message every time-

    “Failed to install the extension ‘com.patrickdeen.tatbcc’. Please make sure the mainfest.xml of this extension is valid and the Extension Manager recognizes at least one product which the extension supports.”

    Any help installing this would be greatly appreciated. I really want to buy the Pro version but I don’t want to spend the money on something when I can’t even install the free version.

  20. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Hi Vanessa,

    Sorry to hear the toolbar did not install as intended. The installation is handled by the CC-app but fails on occasion.
    Extension Manager is deprecated since Photoshop 2014 so that won’t work.

    If you’ve already downloaded the .zxp file I recommend using Anastasiy’s Extension Manager to install the plug-in. If you need to download the .zxp file you can do that here. (you’ll have to be logged with your adobe-ID).

    Could you let me know if that works for you?


  21. fan says:

    So, no plans for a CS6 release? (I saw thoughts about it for a while but then nothing). I thought earlier versions were for cs6? Thanks

  22. Patrick Deen
    Patrick Deen says:

    Hello Fan,

    No the CS6 release probably won’t be happening. The user base for the CC version is already very small. A CS6 version is simply too much work in relation to how many people will actually use it.

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