Ab-Normal Particles

Here is a fun example that uses Normality on a pre-composed particle system emitting a custom texture. I used Trapcode Particular because the Depth of Field option blends the Normals unique coloring together, for a more liquid concoction.

Watch Sample Video (720p HD)
High Quality Pic
(see the real colors…)

You can download the blob-element as part of the project files for the latest Normality Tutorial.

One of the interesting benefits of using a normal pass element as a particle (instead a pre-rendered one with shading and reflections), is the viscous coupling generated by the depth of field. The other benefit is happening is the random movement of the highlights in the glob. Even the reflections have variable coverage, which adds to the feel of the scene.

Normality is a 3D re-lighting tool for After Effects which introduces some interesting opportunities when used with other techniques like particle systems. I’ve also had some fun tests using CC Mr. Mercury but they were a little bit flat looking so I used multiple copies with variable settings. Of course, experimentation is the key to discovery!

Stay curious my friends…

For more information on this free plug-in Normality:

7 years ago
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Cloud City
Continuing the Element 3D fun! This started as a desert scene and soon turned into a cloud city! Typical. Part of the fun of these render projects is just creating random stuff and designing without a specific goal. It’s actually been really challenging and exciting to try various techniques. In this scene, I used an aerial […]
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Guide to Normals

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We recently published a new tutorial on Scene Relighting using a cool plug-in called Normality (FREE) and so I wanted to gather helpful information on the subject for people who are excited like me.

Like many of you, when I first saw Normality about 3 years ago , the gears in my head started turning with amazing possibilities. However back then, it was not a free plug-in until about 6 months ago when he decided to offer this great tool to the world! This got me excited and this was actually the subject of my presentation in LA as a way to help spread the word.

Normality uses special Normal maps to relate the 3D surface info to After Effects for adding lights and even reflections. Here are a few resources on exporting and generating Normal Maps but be sure to watch our tutorial first, to get acquainted.

Stefan, the developer also posted feature-rich tutorial a couple months ago.
Part 1 & Part 2 (High-Def Youtube)

Exporting Normal Map from 3D Software:
Cinema 4D & Modo plus a quick AE demo with normality. Good stuff!
Cinema 4D Materia
l (works with anti-aliasing)
Maya Normal Maps
3D Max Normal Maps with Script
(Our tutorial also includes export info for 3d Max)
New Blender Process (...

7 years ago
NEW TUTORIAL: Scene Re-Lighting

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In this tutorial we will use the free plug-in Normality to add 3D light effects in After Effects. Using a simple Normal-Pass, we will also create stunning reflection and refraction effects with amazing speed and control.

I can say that there are some fun stories and situations through-out the tutorial that are mostly unrelated. Sorry 🙂

Watch Tutorial

Download Free Plug-in: Normality CS3+

As the world of post-processing 3D render passes and depth of field in After Effects grows, the ability to perform relighting is now more powerful than ever. By using a simple normal map with the Normality, it is now possible to use After Effects Lights for fast, believable relighting and reflection/refraction effects.

Normal Maps: These special render passes are similar to standard bump maps but contain for acurate contour information. These passes can be created in nearly every 3D program as well as generated directly from a 2D texture, (as you will see in this tutorial) for relighting capabilities without the use of a 3D program!

7 years ago
Refraction fx in AE

One of the things I demonstrated in at the LA presentation was the use of normal maps in After Effects to simulate realistic refraction and reflections. The technique is very fast and very powerful using a free plug-in called Normality.

Stefan, the developer even worked in a few solutions based on some feedback I sent over. He really built a great tool, in fact there are so many possibilities that I have been working very hard developing this new tutorial to demonstrate several examples of what is possible.

SIDE NOTE: I Just finished the new build of QuickMatte for Windows and Mac so I’m going to try and get that out shortly.

7 years ago
NEW TUTORIAL: Particle Explosion

In this in-depth tutorial we will build several particle systems linked to a single control layer for precision animation with the standard Particle World system. We will also use the Pixel Polly filter to give our title a shattering blast.

Watch Tutorial

Video Sample in HD 720p

I’ve also linked CC Particle World to a 3D Null object using this code:

Download Script

Now when you need to find this expression, just search the blog for it!

7 years ago