2 Days

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Introduction Course

In this course, learn After Effects CC foundation concepts such as layers, keyframe animation and working with Masking. We begin by reviewing the interface, followed by an exploration of the role layers play in compositions, and finding out how to add style to your projects using effects and graphic elements.

Learners do not need to have any prior knowledge of using Adobe After Effects. You should be comfortable using a computer for general use, such as basic keyboard and mouse skills, opening files and folders, and launching applications.

1. Welcome to New York: Intro to After Effects

  • The Project, Composition, & Timeline panels
  • Splitting layers
  • Colour Correction
  • Previewing in real time

2. Welcome to New York: Working with Text & Fade-Ins

  • Creating a fade-in by animating the opacity property
  • Creating animating text
  • Adjusting clip lengths in the Timeline
  • Using Title Safety to ensure TV viewers can see the text
  • Copying & pasting styles

3. Welcome to New York: Styling Text & Rendering

  • Styling the main & secondary text
  • Adding a cross-fade between the video & title text
  • Working in the Render Queue

4. Travel Slideshow: Anchor Points & Working with Images

  • Resizing images to fit the Composition frame
  • Setting layer in points using the In column
  • Aligning still images & changing anchor points
  • Aligning animation timing

5. Travel Slideshow: Cross-Dissolve & Working with Logos

  • Creating cross dissolves (“fades-ups”) between layers
  • Pre-composing layers
  • Scaling up vector layers
  • Adding a fade to black using a solid colour layer
  • How to find missing project files.

6. Rotating Wedge: Null Objects & Hold Keyframes

  • Scaling up multiple child layers using a Null Object
  • Creating a colour wedge using a shape layer
  • Animating the Rotation property
  • Changing text values using the hold keyframes

7. Rotating Wedge: Alpha Mattes & Animated Colours

  • Using an alpha matte to hide/show the text based on the wedge’s movement
  • Bringing back the colour changes
  • Ensuring the logo stays in the Title Safe grid

8. HBO Logo: Importing Layered Files & Adding Easing

  • Flattening a layered file or individual layer on import
  • Importing a layered file with all its layers intact
  • Isolating the Feature & Presentation text using marks
  • Creating fade-ins & fade-outs
  • Adding automatic easing to slow down portions of the animation

9. HBO Photo Tiles: Working with Numerous Layers

  • Cropping the layout & Creating a grid in Photoshop
  • Scaling up each tile using a null object
  • Randomising the order in which the photos animate in
  • Orchestrating the exit animation so the tiles fall down in diagonal groups

10. HBO Movie rating: Vector Layouts & the Graphic Editor

  • Using the Invert effect to swap black and white
  • Using the Graphic Editor to customise easing speed
  • Animating vector shapes using the Trim Paths feature
  • More null objects: animating the three pay television content descriptors

11. HBO Bumper: Editing Compositions & Adding Audio

  • Sequencing multiple compositions
  • Animating like an editor: overlapping shots & using blending modes
  • Adding audio to a composition

12. Sliding Panels: Hard Ease Fashion Reveal

  • Setting Keyframe velocity for fine-tuned ease control
  • Understanding basic motion paths
  • Sequencing the “stripes”
  • Adding a Drop Shadow effect

13. Sliding Panels: More Reveals from Different Directions

  • The benefits of a composition with modular parts
  • The case for separating Position property dimensions
  • Creating three more reveals
  • More keyframe influence, animation sequencing, & drop shadows

14. Sliding Panels: Time Remapping to Match Audio

  • Best practice: adding audio to a nested composition
  • Time remapping the video to sync well the audio
  • Globally adjusting audio volume to ideal levels

15. Particle skateboards: 3D Rotation, Lighting & Motion Blur

  • 3D rotation
  • 3D lighting
  • Creating a shadow
  • Motion Blur

16. Particle Skateboards: Using 3D Cameras

  • Adding a camera layer
  • Viewing text with a 3D camera
  • Scatterizing the text

17. Rendering & Exporting Options

  • Rendering uncompressed files
  • Rendering a video with transparency
  • Saving frequently used render settings into a template
  • Exporting images

18. 3D Cube: Background Lighting & Cropping Square Videos

  • Adding 3D lighting to the background
  • Using the Wiggler panel to make the light fluctuate
  • Cropping the videos so they become square
  • Individually preparing the pre-comps so they can be used as cubes sides

19. 3D Cube: Constructing a Seamless 3D Object

  • Creating a null object & positioning the first cube side
  • Building a 3D cube made of six videos
  • Setting a 3D layer’s initial rotation using the Orientation property
  • The Unified Camera tool

20. 3D Cube: Animating a 3D Object

  • Setting up a camera layer & its parent null object
  • Animating the cube as a whole: 3D rotation via null object
  • Animating a null object’s child layers separately

21. 3D Cube: Casting Light & Shadow on 3D Objects

  • Adding lighting & shadows to 3D objects
  • Adding music & adjusting keyframe timing
  • Adding a lens Flare effect to a solid & animating it


Video Zooms: Editing Video & Using an Animation Preset

  • Editing clip durations & sequencing layers
  • Adding an Animation Preset
  • Saving a custom Animation Preset

Video Zooms: Text Animation, Effects, & Expressions

  • Creating the quote composition
  • Adding a text effect & pick-whipping expressions
  • Adding a text Animation Preset & adjusting the animation

Video Zooms: Working on the Quote Compositions

  • Positioning the text & changing colours
  • Pre-composing the video layers
  • Adding quote comps to the pre-comps
  • Using a side-by-side composition view

1 Day

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Advanced Course

In this After Effects CC Advanced course we explore techniques for working with motion graphic elements, animation, colour correction and more. Throughout the course we will demonstrate tips for working more efficiently, and then move on to advanced effects, detailed masking techniques and real-world expressions. Integrating Photoshop into the After Effects workflow will also be explored.

Learners should be comfortable using Adobe After Effects for most of the topics covered in our Introduction course.

1. Vacation Stripes: Title Sequence with Custom Eases

  • Editing audio length & volume
  • Separately animating the X & Y Position properties
  • Customising an ease using the Graph Editor & Keyframe Velocity
  • Using Alpha Mattes to hide/show text as it animates

2. Vacation Stripes: Working with Masks from Illustrator

  • Using Illustrator to create masks in After Effects
  • Repositioning & resizing masks
  • Animating the five stripes to arrive sequentially

3. Vacation Stripes: Drawing Simple Masks in Illustrator

  • Using parenting to make the 12 noon text move with its container rectangle
  • Drawing masks using After Effects’ vector shape tools

4. Superman: Simple Character Animation Using Masks

  • Converting an expression to keyframes for realistic hair animation
  • Using the pen tool to create custom-shaped masks
  • Pre-composing to change layer size & animate multiple layers
  • Making the hero’s eyes blink using hold keyframes

5. Superman: Guide Layers, Text Presets, & Reverse Parenting

  • Rendering an animatic using import settings
  • Using a guide layer as an animation reference
  • Converting PSD layers to editable text & adding a text animation preset
  • Animating shapes
  • Adding an overshoot
  • Transitioning between layouts with reverse parenting

6. Superman: Shape Motion Paths & Audio

  • Syncing audio & adding text presets
  • Adding a property to a preset
  • Creating a shape layer
  • Creating a position motion path

7. Superman: More Transitions, Effects, & Camera Move

  • Using the Hue & Saturation effect to change colours
  • Adding a “camera move”

8. Text Animation: Masking Layers & Using Scripts

  • Using scripts to automate tasks in After Effects
  • Hiding/showing moving layers using static alpha mattes
  • Creating an animation that overshoots its final position
  • More Illustrator masks in After Effects
  • Scattering the masked pieces & animating them to recombine

9. Text Animation: Creating a Transition Between Layouts

  • Using a guide layer as a positioning reference
  • Moving the lines of text with multiple words using null objects
  • Moving the lines away from the expanding chart using the guide layer
  • Splitting layers to “unparent” a child layer

10. Text Animation: Rotating Layers in 3D

  • Rotating each 3D line of text & graphic on its y-axis
  • How After Effects’ 3D camera influences layer perspective
  • Adding realistic oscillating overshoot keyframes
  • Syncing the text colour changes with their graphic’s spin
  • Adding anticipation keyframes before a major animation
  • Stacking the graphics to form a solid colour square

11. Text Animation: Animating text Character-by-Character

  • Incorporating pre-animated comps into a larger project
  • Keeping vector layers in nested comps sharp
  • Animating the URL on a per-character basis
  • Transitioning from the gold square to reveal the logo

11. T-Mobile Commerical: Motion Tracking to Remove a Logo

  • Splitting the interview clip
  • Adding solids for the mattes that will cover the logo
  • Feathering the mask to soften its edges
  • Hiding the crocodile
  • Using the tracker to hide the logo
  • Refining the colour of the patch using the Levels effect
  • Turning the video black & white

12. T-Mobile Commercial: Greenscreen Removal

  • Keying the backgrounds
  • Colour correcting the scene to black & white
  • Creating a matte for the phone screen

13. T-Mobile Commercial: 4-Point Tracking in mocha AE

  • Using mocha AE for planar tracking
  • Drawing the outer & planar surfaces
  • Doing the tracking & refining frames with misalignment
  • Composing the T-Mobile screen
  • Luma mattes vs. alpha mattes
  • Using After Effects to manually track frames and then every frame

14. T-Mobile Commercial: Rotoscoping

  • Copying the rotoscoping path from Illustrator
  • Arranging the mask & the final result side-by-side
  • Setting keyframes for a mask path
  • Aligning the path every two frames and then every frame
  • Fine-turning the mask path

15. T-Mobile Commercial: Animating the Exclamation Mark!

  • Revealing the exclamation mark’s stick
  • Revealing the dot & keeping its stroke width consistent
  • Adding & copying an expression

16. T-Mobile Commercial: Animating the Logo & Backgrounds

  • Expanding the T-Mobile logo by animating its Z position
  • Importing PNG sequences & using them as repeating tiling backgrounds
  • Stop motion exclamation rotation! (using hold keyframes)
  • Stop motion live footage: time remapping with hold keyframes

17. T-Mobile Commercial: Wipe Transitions & Shape Layer Fun

  • Animating the plane that will initiate a transition
  • Syncing a Linear Wipe transition with the plane’s flight
  • Cloning & animating a shape layer using the Repeater
  • Enhancing a 3D layer’s depth of field with a blur effect
  • Using a shape layer to initiate a Radical Wipe transition

18. T-Mobile Commercial: Lower Thirds & Final Transitions

  • Making the lower thirds appear & disappear using the Pan Behind tool
  • Animating the transition pattern & staggering its pieces
  • Freezing on the last frame
  • Transitioning to the end card
  • Animating the end card
  • Rendering

Bonus Material

Dr. Bob Website: Creating the Particle Background

  • Creating & exploring particle properties
  • Using a gradient to create the background colour
  • Adding an adjustment layer
  • Fractal Noise

Dr. Bob Website: Animating the Main Graphics

  • Positioning the graphics
  • Adding a camera
  • Animating the camera mover
  • Animating the graphics in 3D

Dr Bob Website: Motion Dynamics & Depth of Field

  • Temporarily replacing the background with a proxy
  • Using auto bezier keyframes to smooth the motion of the Camera Mover null
  • Adding depth of field

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