In this tutorial we will combine smoke elements from Action Essentials 2 with a particle system to create a fluid natural transition. While watching think of other possibilities when combining other footage elements…

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View Sample video

6 years ago
FX Console Utility Graphics
Our new workflow utility now has some graphics! Introducing FX Console our new plug-in for After Effects that has been slowly developed over time as my personal utility to improve my workflow. It offers a variety of small features that make a big difference for people who spend a lot of time working in After Effects! Right now […]
New Show and New workflow Plug-in!
Some cool news to announce! We have just finished recording a horrifying new blog show with a frightening theme! But more on that next week! Another exciting development is a a new workflow plug-in for After Effects! Coming this week! Now, this plug-in doesn’t make light sabers or energy fx, it might not even change your […]
Atmospheric Re-Entry!
Here is a preview of an animation i’m working on. Playing around with Element 3D and Saber to create the fiery streaks! This past week has been super productive, finishing VFX for Intercept, doing daily renders and preparing for another DMALA meeting in Los Angeles on October 18th. Going to be a blast! Circuit City #Element3D […]
Circuit City
Making circuits! After trying to create something large, I thought I should try to make something small! I started by taking a circuitry texture and placing it on a plane in Element 3D. I used the texture in the Glossiness channel and the reflection channel to give the pathways a metalic look. Next I built the […]
Upcoming Tutorial: Green Smoke

In another test using Action Essentials 2, I combined two wispy smoke clips to create a fluid transition for this title. After building this comp I realized there were some key tips for randomizing the particles so that the viewer would not know that only 2 clips were used. So I recorded a quick 20-minute tutorial that should be online this week.

Now remember if you see green smoke, ABORT!

6 years ago
Machine Gun Test

Here is a test video that uses pre-keyed elements from our stock footage collection: Action Essentials 2 for machine gun hits. I used 3 random clips with Trapcode Particular’s custom sprite option. Using a particle system allows you do build complex effects without duplicating the clip hundreds of times, while maintaining precise control.

You could potentially duplicate the particle system and make dirt marks or holes underneath the main particles. I’m sure you guys and gals will think of really creative ways of using real footage elements as particles.

Watch Sample Video

6 years ago
Audio Waveforms in AE

Using the Audio Waveform plug-in I’ve built several comps with interesting looks, including many with 3D space. I linked some of the waveform settings to a control layer to offset multiple copies. You can swap out your own audio and make changes to the control layer.

If you want to make some more serious changes, delete all of the copies except for one. Then make changes to the settings and then duplicate it a dozen times or so.

Most of the concepts used to offset multiple copies can be found in this tutorial. You can also extract keyframes from audio with this animation tutorial. And, if you are new to audio in After Effects check this blog post too.

Watch Sample Video

Download AE Project (CS4)

6 years ago
Nice Rack Focus Experiment

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In a recent tutorial Animating a Still, we used tracking data from a real hand-held camera to give our still image a natural look, as opposed to using a mathematical expression like the wiggle. This gave our footage a natural organic look that would be difficult to achieve with expressions.

Then I thought I would try a similar experiment utilizing a real optical rack focus.

So I filmed a dark square while performing a real rack focus to see if I could extract the information inside of after effects to use with a 3D camera.

And since I’m actually posting this, you can assume it worked, unlike my perpetual motion machine that you will never hear about again.

Watch Tutorial Experiment

Download Footage

6 years ago