An animation is a set of instructions that causes an avatar to engage in a sequence of motions. You can create custom animations with commercial and open source tools such as Poser, Blender, and others.
Save the animation in biovision hierarchy (BVH) format
Choose Build > Upload > Animation (L$10)... in the Second Life Viewer.
There is a L$10 fee for uploading an animation. For more information on uploading an animation, see Uploading assets.
You can use animations in gestures, but don't confuse the two.
To activate an animation in your inventory, double-click the animation name. This opens a dialog box with the animation name, a field in which to see or enter a description of the animation, and two buttons:
Play Locally allows you to see the animation, but it will not will be visible to others. This is useful to make sure the animation is really something you want others to see your avatar doing.
Play Inworld allows those within visual range to see your avatar perform the animation.
Using QAvimator to create animations
The video tutorial below explains how to create and upload animations using QAvimator, a free program for creating animations specifically for Second Life.
Note: This video was created in April 2008 and may contain outdated instructions for the current Second Life Viewer.