Special effects packages such as Avid Liquid usually cost hundreds of dollars but there’s one open source solution out there which gives you major studio power in a free package. Jashaka is not only free but it makes morphing and animation remarkably easy for beginners. It’s packed with tutorials and it’s even got it’s own player – Jahplayer – with which you can monitor your creations as you edit.
For morphing in particular, it’s incredibly powerful at taking your clips and allowing you to drag, twist and assimilate them with other images in realtime. The animator is also relatively easy to use although it requires a lot more patience (and isn’t half as fun as playing around with the morphing module). Jashaka accepts almost all video formats and has recently been updated to include huge HDTV files.
Be aware however that Jashaka is still under development and you may find it prone to frequent crashes and bugs. It also doesn’t support non-linear editing as yet although that should become a reality in future releases, making this a free special effects package to be reckoned with.