Hand Drawn Cartoons

I think Sam looks best as a Cartoon!

In the world of the “cartoon look” I don’t think there is any QUICK way to make video look like good animation. There are a few plug-ins that are impressive but are nothing more than a cool trick that you add to low quality footage to make it look “Artistic”. In the film A Scanner Darkly, dozens of artists were commissioned to animate the entire film BY HAND! They certainly developed techniques that sped up the workflow but overall they ended up drawing on virtually every frame. This was a lot of work but the result was very impressive.

Now the look they went for is very difficult and I don’t think I would try to tackle such a complicated process. But I did recently see a very cool hand drawn effect that was like a sketch book come to life. I may do a tutorial to show some techniques I learned along the way.

The truth is this TWO second animation took me about an hour to complete at 12fps. So If I were to animate a 30 second commercial it would take me about 15 hours. Figure about a day or two including a couple of bathroom breaks and a YouTube session, and you will have a very impressive hand drawn commercial. I’ve done far less in a single day. Just remember not everything is a quick fix and a plug-in away, sometime creativity takes hard work too. Besides, if you get paid $5K to animate a commercial, that’s not bad for a single hard day of work.

July 31st, 2007 @ 3:55 pm
Cool, i use flash for my stuff whole lot easier XD. But 5k for one 30 second commercial, awsome.
July 31st, 2007 @ 3:58 pm
Flash is great, but IMO, It looks vectorized instead of animated. Although that effect alone is very sought after as well. It does look very good, especially when you get the settings just right.
    Ganesh Samanta
    June 24th, 2014 @ 12:23 am
    you are right . i like your tutorials very much... not like that you are very great person... i like your creativity.
July 31st, 2007 @ 3:59 pm
I like how it looks, and this is wear patcience is gold
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:02 pm
There was a tutorial on creative cow, that I am sure you have seen. You needed Illustrator and AE. I never did it but I am sure people can find it if they want to give it a try.
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:02 pm
I would like to see a tut on this... Doesn't have to be soon, though...
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:04 pm
That looks really impressive, but I just can't manage to draw ANYTHING by hand. I better stay on the computer thing.

BTW, I sent you an e-mail about a week ago, but got no response, I wonder if it actually arrived...

July 31st, 2007 @ 4:09 pm
Truth is, if you want something to be jaw dropping, it's not going to take you one hour from idea to finish most of the time.

With the tools that we have, the process of animation takes a little work. Sometimes it can be tedious and repetitive, but if you think smart, you can find ways to really make the work more streamline and flow smoother than you ever thought possible.
naim alwan
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:15 pm
So it is done how i thought...THE HARD WAY.... i always thought taht the people at skanerdarkly had some kind of easy way that they didn't want the public to know about... Has AE CS3 got onion skining?

check out http://www.historyofamerica.tv/downloads.htm it one of the most beautiful movies i have seen… anyone know how the water colour wash was done... it kicks ass.

Good luck all you AE lovers…
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:17 pm
I'd love to see a tut on this. The existing one over at the cow isn't, hmm... what I'd like to do. The look you showed here is great!

$5K per diem? Jeez, maybe I should go freelance.
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:23 pm
Heh, Sam looks like the video for "Take On Me".
Blast from the past: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CUod3jGQt0U
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:27 pm
This looks very tedious! Here's one that was featured on YouTube a few days ago.

July 31st, 2007 @ 4:31 pm
Great Link Nate, Actually that was the one I saw that inspired my tinkering. He used photoshop and a tablet and the results are stunning!

Sam was just showing me that blast from the past video a few weeks ago. Ahead of it's time...
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:35 pm
Aharon Rabinowitz's version of cartoon making is pretty awesome too. For you that don't know it, he is a leader at Creativecow.com


You need illustrator and you will have to do some hard things but i like that tutorial
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:40 pm
Everybody sing...

Take on me
Take me on
I'll be gone
In a day or twoooooooooo!

That video is so amazing. Even by today's standards... Def need a tut on that. :D

Then you can do MJ's Black or White video. Even after 15 years, I've never seen morphing look so great.
July 31st, 2007 @ 4:49 pm
Aharons technique is great, another example of how it isn't just a quick one click wonder.
Some Guy
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:01 pm
Yeah, that morphing in the "Black Or White" video is great. Would like to see it too. And don't forget that Forest Gump Tutorial. Keep up the good work.

/* Singing "Taaake ooon meee" */
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:03 pm
Look's great !
Nate's link it's answome... I think I have seen it a long time ago.. I wonder how long time he spend on that one.
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:06 pm
Sorry Andrew, but this is just a waste of time, I don't think you should make this a tutorial, thats just my 2 cents though.

July 31st, 2007 @ 5:13 pm
Great music with a nice animation!!!!

July 31st, 2007 @ 5:14 pm
ooops wrong one!!!
lets try that again shall we?
Great Music with Great Animation

July 31st, 2007 @ 5:17 pm
Sam, just push the green button to the lower right hand side of your screen ; )
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:26 pm
andrew thanks for all these tutorials , and your dry humour is top notch ...easily the best tutorial guy for after effects ... you dont sound like a robot . like most ppl
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:33 pm
Amazing:) Really cool!

Johnny B Goode
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:54 pm
This would be good for the Ozzy Osbourne Music Video were gonna do for his new song...
July 31st, 2007 @ 5:58 pm
Here is my updated day 2 night video. Sucks that youtube quality is not that great. Its hard to see my stary sky replacment. Anyway check it out and let me know what you think.
July 31st, 2007 @ 6:08 pm
Hi gang,

I did a little intro for a Dance School last year. I think it is a form of animation. Nothing as fancy as what Mr. AK can do, but it was fun for me to attempt. I sold over 200 DVD for that Dance School and they all saw this little intro when the DVD started. For a first project, I was very please with the results.

You can see a sample of it at http://zubalea.sitesled.com/Videos/Animation.wmv

Thank you
July 31st, 2007 @ 6:09 pm
Videocopilot / American Chopper similarities:

Andrew is Paul Tuttle and Sam is "Mikey"

Or Andrew is Howard Stern and Sam is "Fred"

I kinda just get this vibe about you guys.
Andrew is the hero and Sam is his loyal, albeit, reluctant sidekick.

"Hey Sam ... here's that hamburger your ordered. Oh, thank...WOOOSH!...BAM!...THUD!
July 31st, 2007 @ 6:52 pm
can't wait for the tutorial
July 31st, 2007 @ 7:12 pm
It won't work for me. Can you put it up on youtube?
July 31st, 2007 @ 7:12 pm
Andrew, very cool. Would LOVE to see this in tutorial form from you!!
ian T hammer
July 31st, 2007 @ 8:01 pm
I cant play the clip it crashes my browser,, anyone eles>?
July 31st, 2007 @ 8:05 pm
I never animated it but I did do a single picture of it in illustrator and it took about four hours to do in total, I couldn't imagine it in motion,
anyway... here it is.
John Paite
July 31st, 2007 @ 8:21 pm
@ Sam... Incubus - Drive is one of my favourite music video..its just awesome..
anyways this technique gives such a good end result but such tedious job.. like Dareell I've did a vector art in photoshop
took me so long as well..but that is if you wanna color it..i mean i just wont know how to bring it to life!!
July 31st, 2007 @ 8:51 pm
@ian T hammer
Download the last version of quicktime and see if that sort your problem out.

July 31st, 2007 @ 9:09 pm
Hey Sam Loya, when will you be releasing tutorials here? maybe you could make some photoshop tutorials and make video copilot even bigger with photoshop tutorials:) Go Sam!!!
Franklin Nin
July 31st, 2007 @ 9:41 pm
Kramer you are f.... the best jejeje, i watch all you tutorials, how can you put fullscreen in after effect when you for example gonna make a mask?, what's the hoykeys?, TIA
S. Gilbert
July 31st, 2007 @ 10:20 pm
2 Tutorials in as many days.... That's HOT!!!

Thanx Andrew
July 31st, 2007 @ 10:25 pm
Hi Andrew
i love your work.I think you're the best tutorial guy ever.
I'm a editor for reality shows in Bulgaria (Europe) and your tutorials help me improve my skills.Big thanks

My question is about software called ROTOSHOP."Scanner Darkly" is made with this software.Do you have some "inside" information ?
When will be released ?
July 31st, 2007 @ 11:05 pm
Awesome!!! I'll run it by the boss!
August 1st, 2007 @ 12:26 am
I was a director on an amateur project called "Ame No Namida", an anime (Japanese cartoon) obtained by hand-drawing frames based upon real footage shot against blue screen.

I had like, 7 drawers at the beginning, but when the post-production started me and my best friend (who was their coordinator) were left alone :(

Another friend of mine was developing a Linux-based program which had to track the motion vectors on the real footage and bring them to the cartoon (in order to scale down the fps of the drawing), but had stopped for the same reason... I was so disappointed, I was so convinced we had great material to work on.

The only frame we ever worked on (before everybody left) can be seen if you click upon my name.
August 1st, 2007 @ 12:57 am
I used to do some (digital) handdrawn animations too, and the best way to speed up the process is to work with, for instance, 3 different shapes for the head, eyes, nose, mouth etc and then loop them. Just adjust the position and scale to fake 3d movement etc. It looks like you've been drawing every frame by hand, but instead you can make an animation quite fast.

Here's one I did about three years ago:
August 1st, 2007 @ 12:58 am
p.s. this technique works for doing realistic cartoon styles, like Andrew does too.
August 1st, 2007 @ 2:56 am
Cant wait for the tutorial...please make it be the next one Andrew
August 1st, 2007 @ 3:17 am
Sorry for spamming. Just wanted to show that it can be done pretty quick. Did this one in 30 minutes. I know it sucks, but it's just a test. Sorry for making you look bad, Sam lol.
August 1st, 2007 @ 4:02 am
Here's the first time I saw this kind of technique, even before Richard Linklater's "Waking Life".
Not to mention it has Sia Furler on vocals, as she does for most of Zero 7 work. But she's an Aussie. Like me, Wewt!

August 1st, 2007 @ 4:16 am
@Ferdi Willemse:
Your footage of Sam is pretty cool :) Nice work.
August 1st, 2007 @ 4:18 am
Nice work Ferdi.
August 1st, 2007 @ 4:38 am
ooh, ooh, I love 2D line 'toons...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=6p4OW22FNAU [PS + AE w/ Wacom ;)]

I'd love to see your technique w/ footage AK... bring it on! You da Man!
August 1st, 2007 @ 5:11 am
wow, thats just what i need for my project. a demostration/tutorial would be very helpful.
great work ferdi!
August 1st, 2007 @ 5:31 am
I got this one of my girlfriend, and it's in color, this also took about four hours... but it's totally worth it. and John P. that car is amazing it totally payed off taking your time with it...
If vector art wasn't so damn time consuming it'd be super awesome...
August 1st, 2007 @ 6:10 am
Andrew, I always wanted to know if the sin city white and black colors are also a frame by frame work. Do you have any idea about that?
August 1st, 2007 @ 6:20 am
it's probably the same way he does the silhouettes tutorial, basically just using the key matting as the footage...
August 1st, 2007 @ 6:22 am
here's the unedited footage from the opening....
sorry to spam
August 1st, 2007 @ 6:47 am
Hi AK, great Tuts! How do u think they make this one?


Frame by Frame?

I think it look amazing,
August 1st, 2007 @ 7:51 am
The only easier way of doing this is if you export your footage from after effects and a film strip file (.FLM) at the desired frame rate and then you can open this up in photoshop and it shows you all your frames in one HUGE.. and i mean HUGE document...

You can then add layers, draw over, add filters that you don't get in after effects etc and save as a flm again..

open this in after effects and it'll put all the frames together for you... also render times with this are very manageable which is nice
August 1st, 2007 @ 9:14 am

I have already done it with filmstrip & photoshop filters. The output seems okay, but not like actual Sketch up.

I think, will give it a try once again & find some other cool trick to get dat actual detail.

I will share it as soon as i find it.

Thnx & Regards
Orc Master
August 1st, 2007 @ 9:18 am
I was actually experimenting with this the other day but I didn't get that much of a good result...

A tutorial on this would be real darn useful, although, well, that all depends on Andrew... It'd be a long tutorial, though :P

Nice work, Ferdi!
August 1st, 2007 @ 9:40 am
Thats like the call on me music video from the 80's not bad stuff, but i wouldn't want to spend weeks making a 5 minute video
August 1st, 2007 @ 10:31 am
Hi Andrew,

great stuff. I did receive today the first 2 DVD through mail the remaining 5 in the post between your and myself in Europe. Keep up the good work. You did inspire me and I spend more time these days with AF CS3 - loading some work onto my webside www.strongmocha.com


August 1st, 2007 @ 11:23 am
Thorsten Meyer, awesome trailer. Where is that song from??
August 1st, 2007 @ 11:52 am
Hi Andre,

the song is a clip that I got from Andrew's "Designer Sound FX -- Sound FX for Movie Trailers & Promos " I did take the same clip and used it three times to make that little song.


August 1st, 2007 @ 12:42 pm
Hey Andrew, would you consider a tutorial on getting hit by a car? Or a realistic water, sky or fire?

August 1st, 2007 @ 12:57 pm
I would also love to see a tutorial on this. That would be awesome.

Also, I second having Sam do photoshop tutorials! I started with photoshop before after effects, and would love to see what techniques he's got.
Daniel gomez
August 1st, 2007 @ 1:42 pm
hello i have a quick question... for some reason when i scrub the timeline the footage does not update until i release the mouse button...how do i get it to update just when i move it.
sorry if i phrased that weird
August 1st, 2007 @ 2:04 pm
Daniel, I think it just may be a lack of RAM. How much do you have? and do you have other programs open along with after effects?
Daniel gomez
August 1st, 2007 @ 2:40 pm
i have 2 gigs of ram but the thing is when i had AE 7 it worked but since i moved to cs3 it does not do it
Orc Master
August 1st, 2007 @ 2:48 pm
That's weird... I have CS3 and it works just fine for me :S I mean, it updates, though at low resolution. I guess this is what your After Effects doesn't do...
August 1st, 2007 @ 3:08 pm
Awesome! I requested this kind of effect! Please do a tutorial... Did you use the paint tool?
August 1st, 2007 @ 3:14 pm
I've been playing around with a cartoon effect for a couple days myself, this is the best I have come up with yet,

I didnt have ideal conditions and the footage I used was for a differnt video I made.
but anyways the effect is still nice

August 1st, 2007 @ 4:09 pm
Hey, Andrew, I have humble question for you: You working on monitor LCD or CRT? Thanks for answer :)

By the way: You are a great AFX designer.
August 1st, 2007 @ 4:10 pm

Try turning off the openGL preview option in CS3.
Morten Enoksen
August 1st, 2007 @ 5:17 pm
Andrew, what is the idea for your your next tut?
August 1st, 2007 @ 6:55 pm
reply to: Morten Enoksen


Absolutely sweetness! lol
August 1st, 2007 @ 6:56 pm

I think it was kind of mentioned before... I heard Scanner Darkly was made with a program called ROTOSHOP, or something like that. Do you know if thats what they used aside from the animators, or is that just rumor? Also, I love that style of animation you made! I think it is a pretty different style than the one in Scanner Darkly, but its still awesome! A lot of potential!
Justin Productions
August 1st, 2007 @ 7:19 pm
Here's a little test I did: http://youtube.com/watch?v=flNV8t84Sc8

Not too proud of the result (so Youtube's quality), but here's a pic I took out of it:
August 1st, 2007 @ 9:08 pm
so uhm... you gonna make a tutorial on this one or what?
naim alwan
August 1st, 2007 @ 11:01 pm
@Andrew Kramer
do you know how the water colour effects was done on this http://www.historyofamerica.tv/downloads.htm... watch the moking of. clip Please answer i really would aprciate it...
@ Justin Productions
your clip looks good what effects did you use?

Good Luck all you AE peeps.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 12:35 am
How much is $5k?
August 2nd, 2007 @ 2:07 am
thats 5000dollar, and imo Andrew, how do you get such amounts of money? really :) i am a certificated flash developer and i don't even loot that cash. must be the tiny country belgium vs usa.
but nice if you do.

anyways, i don't really agree,
it is very easy to rotoscope in flash / illustrator / photoshop

the trick is to contrast your original in a way you only leave the most distint outlines tip : find edges!!! (but i didn't tell you this ;) ) convert colored footage to black and white (standard) or you can split your passes and to a R G B run for each channel (gives nice ghostly effects if you loosely re-arrange it)

also, in flash, as mentioned, if you get the settings right, and you toy with the line style, it doesn't look vectorized by far, even better, it lives. and did i mention the speed it all goes by?
gives effects like something in the sense of what Nate posted.

as working years in the graphic business i've rotoscoped tons of images this way,even for record sleeves so thats at high resolution and it only got better now with CS3 live trace.
check it out, its not that tedious as it looks. ofc. details is where the meat comes in.

also in AE, make a few presets for your footage where you can start off, i have a darkpass, midpass, highpass and an artifact pass
you can switch easily between them and find love with the top most setting and work from there.

same goes for coloring ofc.


that clip you mention, you ask "look at the making off" well you can acutally see how is this done

well, it's kinda there, as i mention above
you can use the channels color to give it multiple passes, blur out , fade , etc the colored pass and voila you have the watery color effect
add a adjustment layer fill it with a texture, now you have a sort of "canvas" look add a gradient and you're done. and to spice things up you even can give a little grain to that pass so it looks crunchy to give that distinct look.

hope these tips come in handy for some of you.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 3:25 am
Question for sam!

What does it feel like to know that andrew is willing to draw you frame by frame so that WE can be happy? not just you?

also thanks for getting in contact with me on youtube :)
August 2nd, 2007 @ 5:10 am
For anyone who loves painting his own pictures on a computer i can recommend you Art Rage. It's a very cool program for creating pictures on a computer which don't look like they are actually made with a pc.

You can download a free version of it here: http://www.ambientdesign.com/artrage.html
August 2nd, 2007 @ 5:35 am
Looks great. Andrew, just want to say thanks for sharing your knowledge with us through these wonderful tutorials each week. Keep them coming.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 5:51 am
Ok everybody, here's a V.EASY real-time-viewing way of doing this:

Premiere Pro or After Effects:

1. find edges
2. black+white
3. brightness/contrast
4. levels

5. then i used luma-key to display the grunge texture underneath

here's my example:

Thing is, this is v.easy but it's not quite as effective as hand-drawing in my opinion! hats off once again to AK for spending hours on something for our viewing pleasure :)
August 2nd, 2007 @ 6:23 am
Uh thats not bad i think
August 2nd, 2007 @ 7:45 am
so Andrew, this tutorial got me wondering as to when you'll t-shirts to sell with your big ol' mug on them haha. and what kind of computer do you use?
August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:03 am
very cool

simple and effective. Well worth the time put in. I spend much time on my light table. Cool to see others on it too.

On a side note I'm thinkin Sam should check out this site:



Sam is a great sport...AK you are a great resource.

Can't wit for the next tute.

August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:09 am
Hey guys, just a little question. How can I put keyframes on the wiggle?
I could send a mail to Andrew, but I bet its easy, so I don't wanna bother him :)
August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:24 am
Helge add a slide from the expression controls and just adjust that!

Let me know if that helps matey :P
August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:36 am
Hey andrew, whats up, i love the web, can't stop visiting, I enter every 5 minutes to check the comments of the blog or the tutorials haha, im addicted to videocopilot!

what about a forum? i think it will be exelent... creative cow has a lot of info in the forum but the apparience its.. "·%#@~... well thats all, can't wait for the next! thanks for sharing your knowledge

btw: sorry for my bad english, im from argentina =D
August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:40 am
Well, what i did is make a filmstrip, import in photoshop, add some filters, screw around with it a bit, and then brought it back into after effects, applie a luma transparency, to add an alpha to the white, basically reversed of normal alphas, and then applied a paperish texture that i edited in after effects and motion tracked to the shot so it looked cooler.

It came out, "alright" IMO.

Sorry for the blurriness, it's just Youtube's quality.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:42 am
Whoops, sorry to spam, forgot the link! lol

August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:48 am
A forum would rock.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 8:54 am
Yes its also my wish to have forums. I think its better than a blog because you can request tutorials easier and others can discuss about. If you dont want to waste your traffic with these forums ill put one on my webspace.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 9:26 am

that is WAY too much effort, LOL! check out my procedure that i've written a few comments above u...
August 2nd, 2007 @ 9:55 am
Mark/finalrenderfilms- you beat me, i was going to tell about that same technique.

actually this technique is very good for making cartoons videos and to apply every posible photoshop filter to your video and get very very interesting results

on this link you can see 2 axamples of using this technique, the second one came out better

August 2nd, 2007 @ 10:23 am
@ Richard, ya, I guess it is a lot of effort, but when you've worked more in photoshop than after effects like me, I guess it comes natural haha. Also, with photoshop, you have much more control over your effect.

What I've also dabbled with is selecting every like 10th frame and making one layer out of each of those sets of every 10th frame, and slightly vary the effects on each one so you get some distortion and movement throughout the video.

@ Henry, I like the way yours came out. I'm working on some color washes too that i can put behind me luma transparent cartoon.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 11:14 am
I always thought the best way to do this was a combination of rotoscoping and posterising. You would posterise the image and then use that as a guide for the rotoscoping to make the cartoon version.

A forum would be great too. You could have a request area so the comments don't get so filled up.

Anyway I was wondering if you're going to increase the resolution of the tutorial vids? I use a 1080p screen, and your window looks a little cramped. Sometimes it is hard to follow when you use different methods to do the same thing because you don't have space for all the panes.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 11:17 am
Thanks Scott :)
J Crowe
August 2nd, 2007 @ 11:29 am
All of these other methods look great and save time, but to truly get that hand drawn look I think you're best off just rotoscoping.
Sir Teddy
August 2nd, 2007 @ 3:18 pm
Mhm, some sort of trick film, but I like better realistic videos.
August 2nd, 2007 @ 6:46 pm
Is it monday yet?
August 2nd, 2007 @ 9:59 pm
Hey andrew, I got a question, about your Light Saber presets

How did you make your own expression control effects into 1 big controll effect? (Like merge)

Because I cant do it lol
August 2nd, 2007 @ 11:26 pm
No responses in two days?
I'm only guessing here - but I think Andy is now a Daddy.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 12:23 am
turn dv to cartoon with standard AE plugins no rotoscoping neaded.
leave your mail for aep.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 2:20 am
Yep, the lack of posting can only mean one thing methinks. The pitter-patter of tiny feet :)
August 3rd, 2007 @ 3:45 am
We miss you Andrew =( we need more tutorials for survive haha :P im just bored and i don't wanna study so i post a comment :P

what about some motion graphics tutorial?

and, a videocopilot forum would be the best that u can give to your public :D come on :$ please! lol... cyas =)
August 3rd, 2007 @ 4:00 am
"Hey andrew, I got a question, about your Light Saber presets

How did you make your own expression control effects into 1 big controll effect? (Like merge)

Because I cant do it lol"

Yeah, I also couldn't find a way to merge effect controls... Please tell us your secret... XD

August 3rd, 2007 @ 4:54 am
finalrenderfilms (at) gmail.com

Thanks toni, I'll have to check this out.
Mat Seguin
August 3rd, 2007 @ 5:54 am
hey ppl,

check out some of my after effect work...i know it has nothing to do with the cartoon look but i just want your opinion. check it out please!

August 3rd, 2007 @ 6:35 am

are you saying you did this in photoshop first then brought it into AE? following your instructions above? would like to see how you did it. maybe a youtube quick tut?
August 3rd, 2007 @ 8:25 am

This plugin sounds interesting, I have to check this out

Thanks Toni.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 8:47 am
@ mark. Yes. I rendered the video out of AE to a fileformat called filmstrip, or flm. Then when i went into photoshop, choose file open, and select all formats, look for your file, and import it. It will then open up as a really big image that looks like this.

Then you apply all the effects you want, and save it as a flm. file again, and import into your project in AE.

I will do a video tutorial for it. I also have one for my flying technique on youtube.


I will put both tutorials up on youtube soon.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 8:48 am
Whoops, I forgot the link again! lol


that's what your filmstrip will look like.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 9:47 am
Richard Wakefield

Do you have a tut on youtube i could check out. liked your effect as well.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 10:10 am
With all the different types of "Cartoon FX" that we have seen from everyone here, I still prefer to learn AK's method of how he went about animating. AK's looks the best simply because it doesnt look like a filter FX applied to video. Besides, if it were as easy as dragging a FX preset onto footage, then there would be no need for others to hire us to do the job. I like hard work and would put in my time to get it done right. So, how bout it Andrew? Make this your next tutorial, and I will donate my 5k to the Video Copilot Foundation.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 10:23 am
Chip, you beat me to it. All of the examples here look great but they still look more like stylized video than cartoons. Unfortunately, there's no real shortcut to getting it to look right, you just need to throw on some of your favorite tunes, load up on the junk food, and hunker down and go to work. As far as making this a new tutorial, you basically have everything you need to know. Just separate your frames and draw them out.
handsome pete
August 3rd, 2007 @ 10:55 am
Agreed kamaKANA. There's really no need for a tutorial on this. All of the information was given by Andrew at the top of the page. It's simple rotoscoping at 12fps. Time consuming? Yes. But it's really the best way to get your video to look like hand drawn animation.

I'd rather see the next tutorial dedicated to something else. Just my 2 cents.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 11:06 am
Reminds me of:


At 1:25, ANDREW you should make Sam do a remake of this! Ha! J/K Sam.

Classic Video!
August 3rd, 2007 @ 11:41 am
August 3rd, 2007 @ 1:43 pm
@zsde. Everytime I load an AVI file it crashes the program.
August 3rd, 2007 @ 4:21 pm
Sorry For the Long Link that's not good for your Lay out


This one is bether
John Paite
August 3rd, 2007 @ 4:46 pm
have u guys seen the movie Renaissance? Its a french film and took them 6 years to complete it..thats crazy!!
August 3rd, 2007 @ 5:13 pm
Do you have a new member of the fam-fam?
August 3rd, 2007 @ 8:12 pm
Hey Andrew do you ever use Primatte 3 the keyer plugin?
August 3rd, 2007 @ 9:38 pm
Maybe I'm wrong... I haven't tried it, but this just came to me tonight.

Using the rototool script found at nabscripts.com could you mask around shapes, track them, apply the tracking back to a mask and achieve the cartoon effect that way?

I mean It seems like a possible way to get a similar stylized look. Although i think it would turn out to become something similar to the latest James Bond intro...

Tell me what you guys think.
(for those who don't know the rototool script takes a mask and converts the mask points into tracking points, you then motion track those point, once done the script can convert the motion data back into a mask)
August 4th, 2007 @ 12:38 am
bourne ultimatum -go see it .
August 4th, 2007 @ 2:17 am
where are you Andrew =( we need some tuts... :P lol
August 4th, 2007 @ 4:35 am
Cool, realy cool! I need a tutorial with sparkles and electricity from maybe fingertips or a human body
August 4th, 2007 @ 5:10 am
yes Andrew, plz DO consider a forum, this blog thing is great, but you see it's running out of hand
i am having an exalted bandwidth deal for my company so if you need hosting, its a breeze for me ;)
August 4th, 2007 @ 5:41 am
Where's Andrew? Did they have their baby? Let us know -- he sure has been quiet for an unusual amount of time.
Morten Enoksen
August 4th, 2007 @ 6:01 am
C'mon! Its been 5 days now! When are u thinking about launcing a new tutorial?

I "apologee" to you if you're stressed out/having a baby!

August 4th, 2007 @ 6:58 am
for all those yearning for a new tutorial, here's an idea. lets all pick some visual effect that we like from tv, and try to figure it out how its done and replicate it. it can be like our own blogsters challenge.
August 4th, 2007 @ 8:54 am
Andrew you got the power to make the best vfx forum if u want come on! :P hehe... we still waitin' :P cyas and good luck
August 4th, 2007 @ 9:34 am
there is alot of products coming out movie essentials 2 roitgear 2 and many more i think we should give hime a break .make sure to master the old tut.
August 4th, 2007 @ 9:35 am
August 4th, 2007 @ 11:24 am
Well, no to be a jerk, but I am gonna launch my site soon, and I'll have some after effects tutorials as well as flash, photoshop and other tutorials too. So if you want, you can email me some ideas you had for flash, photoshop, and after efects tutorials.

finalrenderfilms (at) gmail dot com..


and andrew, hope the baby's coming along well!
August 4th, 2007 @ 2:55 pm
That clip wasnt _that_ impressive, hand-drawings? A scanners darkly, got a Bob-someone(dont recall his name) to develope a program called Rotoshop, which really made the movie about 150x times easier. I a demonstration of the program ones, does about 70% of the work for you.

I was playing around in AE and photoshop some, and there are some really easy, and impressive stuff you can do with AE alone, with no plug-ins nor presets whatsoever. A cartoon-look isn't very hard to achieve, it all depends on what you are looking for.
John Paite
August 4th, 2007 @ 3:59 pm
@ Brennan Mceachran - I saw ur post and got the script..but is there any further explanantion or something? most of the contents on his website are in french and yeah thats the end of the road for me!!
August 4th, 2007 @ 11:22 pm
Richard Wakefield's technique worked extremely well for me. For the small amount of steps, it's very versatile and can be tweaked a bunch depending on your footage. I used a texture from Riot Gear as the papery background.
August 5th, 2007 @ 12:01 am
How about this?

Export your video as (IMAGE SEQUENCE)

Open first frame in Photoshop and Add "Posterization" as well as any effects you want and curves. Then just batch process, or create an action to imply effects to each frame. Then import the processed frames back into after effects and allocate each frame .55/sec. This looks pretty close to "A Scanner Darkley" if shot and effected right. Email me if this makes no sense....jamesdcawley@hotmail.com

August 5th, 2007 @ 7:42 am
but see James, that's too much work. You can just export it as a filmstrip and open up the whole thing in photoshop. then export it out, import into AE and it's a movie.
August 5th, 2007 @ 2:22 pm
anyone seen the graphics of the movie BEOWULF --> now that's crazy!!!
August 6th, 2007 @ 4:15 pm
Hi Toni, love the toon efx in AE. Can't wait to use the preset.

August 6th, 2007 @ 9:43 pm
I did something similar for a music video once. I used Corel painter's clone function and then hand painted 680 frames of video. It took me a couple of days to do it all but the effect was pretty killer. I was able to automate some of it using actions but if I relied on that too much, the look of the frames and the brushstrokes tended to look too similar and a much better look was acheived by doing it by hand.
August 8th, 2007 @ 7:08 am
Check out Digital Anarchy's Toon It. http://www.digitalanarchy.com/toon/toon_main.html
August 8th, 2007 @ 10:57 am
This cool your video but one I want to see a tuto including/understanding how you had done that…
August 15th, 2007 @ 1:26 am
i read something online where they creating a chalkboard animation in fcp. they just used find edges and edge detection filters and it came out really good. if you add in a tint filter you can change the colors and everything. if it was combined with ae, with a green screen and a wiggle expression screen overlay i think it would look amazing. have not got around to trying it yet though
August 15th, 2007 @ 2:23 pm
this looks like it will be a great tutorial, can't wait.
August 18th, 2007 @ 10:21 am
thisis my production i get for this spot. 100$

dave atkins
November 2nd, 2007 @ 5:10 am
when is this coming!! cant wait - but I've been waiting ages!!
April 6th, 2008 @ 6:11 pm
I guess this isn't coming :p
December 29th, 2008 @ 2:49 am
Hey, I see you drawn the first picture by hand, but did you draw the 3rd picture by hand too, if not, how did you do it, but if you did - that's awesome! Nice idea with a short, but GREAT result!
July 28th, 2010 @ 2:50 am
it is pretty cool, is it animated on Flash?
the line is very simple and if that took so long,
I don't want to think what a colorfull animated caricature or drawing will take...
November 27th, 2010 @ 2:21 pm
I look forward to the day this can be completed more easily
May 29th, 2013 @ 2:11 am
That's super cool! Thanks for sharing!
Before Posting
We're trying to encourage more thoughtful commenting.  Please take a moment to write a meaningful response to this post.
* Name
* Email (will not be published)
* field is required