Hiya, I've just started out trying to learn to use Animate, while I already have a little bit of knowledge of Illustrator (preferred) and Photoshop. I know you can make characters in all of these programs, but what would you all recommend? And which tools, for example, do you use? Vectors? Or brush? Or pen tool? Or a combination? Is there like a general way? What will be best for later when you import the work into Animate?
To simplify your workflow and make animation projects easier to manage the goal should always be to create as much as possible within Animate. In practive this means everything except for painted backgrounds, if such are needed.
I've written a lot about this over the years and I'd like to offer you a few in-depth articles with video demonstrations on the matter.
You will also be able to download some sample files to play with.