Boiling in After Effects – Layered Drawing



We started by preparing our material in Photoshop for our animation, to start I set up a new HD file -1920 x 1080 and imported my 3 separate drawings into Photoshop. I then layered them up one on top of each other, ensuring each drawing was on a different layer, to align the drawings I turned the opacity down so I could see the drawing underneath. I then flattened each image separately and saved them as a jpeg.

The next step was to import the 3 separate images together as a jpeg sequence into After Effects. I set up a new HD composition that was 10 seconds long. I then dragged the sequence into the composition window and interpreted the footage; at this point I changed the frame rate to 25 and loop to 20. I then dragged the footage on to fit the new sequence length on the timeline, this kind of animation is called boiling, as it feels and looks like it’s animating without doing anything technical. As the sequence was moving really quickly, I stretched the footage out (options – column – stretch) to enable to see each of the 3 layers clearer, this process slowed the sequence down by half.

The next step was to play around with effects; I chose 3 from under the colour correction option – hue/saturation, levels and tint. I did this to make sure the lines of my drawing were black, using these options I could have changed the colour of the line in my drawing, however i decided I liked the black best as I like hand drawn feel much better. I then imported a texture and dragged it underneath the sequence layer, using toggle switches and modes I then changed mode to multiply.

Sara told us about the safe title line and the safe action, safe area’s, which is a term, used in television productions to describe the areas of the television picture that can be seen on television screens.

The next step of the animation was to add some text; I used a quote, which I felt went well with my drawing. ‘Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.’ To give the text the same hand drawn feel as my drawing, I downloaded a scribble texture and imported it in to after effects and added it to the composition. I changed the trikmat options to alpha matt and mode to multiply; this then made the texture appear on the type. As I had added effects to the original sequence layer I wanted to add the same settings to the texture, to do this I selected the original drawing and pressed E, this showed all the effects on the original layer, I then copied and pasted these onto the texture layer.

After this I selected the texture layer and using the pen I began to scribble over the text, once happy with my scribble, I went to effect, generate and stroke. Under these options I changed the brush size to 20 and paint style to on original image. To animate the scribble over the text I selected the stopwatch for the end and inserted a key frame at 1 second and another further on, now when the animation is played the text now disappears in the direction I drew the scribble.

Finally I rendered my outcome (Ctrl, Cmd and M) as a QuickTime movie using the format option ‘Apple ProRes 4444′. To speed up render time I put caps lock on. As the video rendered was of a large size, I opened it up in QuickTime player and made another copy of the video, this time exporting it at a lower resolution (720p).

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