Adobe After Effects: Animated Postcard - Make It Rain | Art with Mr. Noel | Skillshare

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Adobe After Effects: Animated Postcard - Make It Rain

teacher avatar Art with Mr. Noel, Keep on Creating!

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

8 Lessons (31m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Setting Up Our Scene

    • 3. Making Rain

    • 4. Water Drops

    • 5. Water Ripples

    • 6. Rolling Fog and Waves

    • 7. Make an Animated GIF

    • 8. Final Project Settings

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About This Class


Make it Rain in After Effects : A Digital Postcard

Our goal is to create the illusion of rain falling over a scenic background, using the tools available in Adobe After Effects.

The topics covered include:

  • Making rain with a particle emitter
  • Creating large and small drops on the lens of the “camera”
  • Adding ripples and waves in the water
  • Creating a layer of rolling fog over the scenery

We'll use Photoshop to turn our rainy scene into a digital postcard in the form of an animated GIF.

At the end you will be able share your rainy scene in the student gallery and send it to your friends and family by email!

Thank you for your time, and I’m excited to see what you create.


Meet Your Teacher

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Art with Mr. Noel

Keep on Creating!


About the instructor:

Hello Art Friends!

My passion is animation and I love to draw! While I have pursued computer animation I am finding a renewed passion for drawing and other physical art.

Check out my drawing tutorials on YouTube : Draw with NONU

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1. Introduction: Hey, everyone, my name's knoll. And in this class, I'm gonna show you how to make it ring. No, not like that. In this class will use adobe after effects in combination with photo shop to create the illusion of rain falling on a scenic back roads. We'll go over how to add rain particles. Water droplets on the screen, ripples in the water and fog gently rolling across the scenery at the end will transform our project into a digital postcard in the form of an animated GIF that you consent to your friends and family by email. Well, that's enough talking. How about we get started? 2. Setting Up Our Scene: we'll begin our project in adobe aftereffects by setting up our main composition and determining the with height and frame rate of the project. Go to the top menu and select composition. New composition on this brings up our settings. Title Your seen appropriate Since we'll be making a gift as our final video, I've set up the scene dimensions to be 640 with and 360 pixels in height. If you choose to produce the project in high definition, you can set the dimensions to 1920 picks was for with and 10 80 pixels for height or 12 80 with by 7 20 night. Ultimately, our project will be rendered at six frames per second. Let's work with a frame rate of 24. The gift will loop and repeat, so we'll make the duration five seconds long to keep the final file size. Small clique OK, and you'll see that now we have a blank seemed to work with. On the left hand side is where our project assets will be imported and will begin by getting our main background image. Put a file import file, find your image and select import toe added to the project. You see the main project file and the background image available for use. Click and drag your background image into the timeline. You may have to scale the image down to fit the window. To scale on image, you know, formally hold the shift key down, click the corner handle and dragged to the appropriate size for our project. Choose an image that has a body of water so we can add some effects to it. Now that we're happy with our background image, let's had just the color of the scene and make a look a little more blue, as if a gentle storm has rolled in, creating adjustment layer specifically for this color correction, either right clicking in your layers and selecting adjustment layer or go to the top menu and select layer new adjustment layer. You'll see that it has now been added to our layers right click and rename it appropriately to add a blue tint. Search for the effect on the right hand side. If this is not visible on your screen, go to the top menu and select window effects and presets and make sure it's checked on type tint in the search box and you'll see that the results appear underneath. Select the color correction and drag it on top of the adjustment layer on the left hand side of the screen. The tint attributes appear, and the project files are on the tab next to it. Go back to the tent attributes and will change the white toe a blue and lower the opacity to around 20%. Now search for curves. Select the effect and drag it into the adjustment layer with the RGB channel. Selected will nudge the curve gently toe, push the darker values a little deeper. You can also pick individual color channels, but we'll keep it simple for this project. Okay, way set up are seen and now we're ready to make it rain. 3. Making Rain: we've set up our seeing, we can make it rain. In this lesson. I'll show you two techniques. The first is simple, and the second involves more steps for the simple rain. Effect will create a new adjustment layer, so if we choose not to use this layer, we can turn it off, delete it or ignore it without affecting anything else on our seen. Rename it appropriately, I'm including the name of the effect Teoh easily distinguish it from the second green. Effect will be creating later search for CC ring fall in the effects panel and dragged the result into the adjustment layer. I believe that in some versions of after effects, it is simply cc rain instead of Sisi rainfall. If you hit your space bar, you can see the effect play on the screen. In the effects control tab, you'll see options available to adjust how the rain looks. Play around with it to increase the number of drops falling the size of the drops. The radio, which the drops fall, the angle that the drops coming to the screen, how far apart they are from each other, the variation and how they fall, color and how visible the drops are in the shot. I'm going to re set to the default settings and keep it as is OK. Now that we figure that out, let's move on to the more involved technique on the top menu. Go to layer, select new and choose solid. Rename it to distinguish it from the previous rain effect. Make sure the dimensions are the same and click OK. New layer is now at the top, and we'll apply the effect called cc particle world. As soon as it's applied, you'll see a grid at the bottom of the screen and a circular particle emitter in the middle of the screen. The emitter is where the particles originate from. Birth rate determines how fast the particles are released. Longevity determines how long they stay on screen. Position attributes allow you to place the emitter toe a specific point on or even off screen physics. Attributes will allow us to make the particles move in a realistic manner by applying gravity and friction. There are many options for the type of particle to emit, and the color can be adjusted as well. Let me reset the emitter and input the sightings that I found work best for the rain. You can use my settings or explore them on your own. First, let's turn off the grid for a cleaner screen. We'll set the birth rate to 60. Leave longevity at one second position. X stays at zero position. Why will move up to negative 2.34 positions. E stays at zero. Change radius X to 4.485 Leave radius. Why the same and change radius Z to 8.65 If you hit the space bar, you can see that the particles are not falling far enough. We fix this with the physics. Change the velocity to negative 0.5 on increased gravity to four. For the actual particle type. Change it too. Faded sphere at just the birth rate to 0.220 on the death size to 0.2 size variation can be adjusted to 35% and max capacity to 65%. Just the rain color as you like. And when you're ready, hit the space bar. Does he really heavy snow? You'll actually notice that the rain does not make it on screen into a few frames have passed. Just layer by clicking and dragging it to the left until the rain is visible from the first frame way. Have a big gap at the end of the scene, just a layer by hovering your mouse over the edge of the layer and expanding it to the end will make this fear stretch out by applying motion. Blur to them. To get this toe work, you must first make sure that the motion blur icon is highlighted at the effect to the rain layer. If you only see the modes with normal visible, go to the bottom of the page. Click toggle switch modes to bring up the other menus. Now you see the motion blur icon available. Click on the box in the rain layer and you'll see that that's fears. Turning to streaks waken soft enough the rain a little by applying a fast blur. Goto effect blur and sharpen fast blur. You'll see the effect has been added to the later increased the blur to around 85 change the blur dimensions to vertical. All right looks really nice. Now we can move on to adding water droplets to the lens 4. Water Drops: with our ring created, we can move on to creating the illusion of a camera lens. Collecting droplets of water will begin by duplicating the main background by hitting control de or command E on the keyboard. Rename it to drops one in the effects. Many search for CC Mr Mercury and apply it to the layer. Now you'll see a distortion of the background layer. If we hide the background, you'll see what's happening behind the scenes. Let's add the settings that I found to work for the project. Change Radius X or Y 2 500 just the producer to 5 43 and to 75. Change of direction to 180 degrees lower The velocity to 0.2 increased the birth rate to two increased longevity to 2.5 lower gravity to 0.2. So the drop stick longer on screen increased resistance to 0.7 and change the animation to jet change the influence map to blob out increase the birth size to 0.4 and the death size to 0.15 Now hit the space bar to see your results pretty cool, right? The drops are a little too circular, though, and we'll fix that by creating a displacement map that will work the blobs as they move down the screen. Go to layer new, create a new solid and name it fractal and click OK, right. Click the fractal layer and select pre composed Rename it displacement and make sure the second button is selected. Click OK. Now you'll see that the fractal layer has been turned into a new composition called displacement. Click and drag the composition to the bottom of all the layers. DoubleClick displacement to reveal the fractal layer we created earlier, and you'll see that the main project is right next door. If you click on the tab next to displacement, select the fractal layer and apply the effect called fractal noise. Change the fractal type two dynamic. Invert the image, increase the contrast to 200 adjust the evolution to 65 degrees. Let's soften the edge of the noise by applying a fast bowler and setting the value of the blur toe About two. Exit the displacement comp and go to the main composition. We want to affect the drops with the displacement maps we created and will do that by selecting the drops layer and applying an effect called displacement map. Click and drag the displacement map effect down to the drops. One layer. We want the displacement map to grab its information from the bottom layer called displacement. Change the colors toe luminant and change the vertical displacement to 25. I noticed my map was not affecting the whole screen for some reason, so I changed it to stretch map to fit. Now you can see the blobs are warping much more realistically. Let's add a trail behind the drops by duplicating the drops. One layer hit control de or command E on the keyboard. Who wanted to trail a little after the first drops. So it just the timing of the layer and this is really your own personal interpretation. Decrease the velocity to zero. Increased longevity to four Change animation from jet to explosive will have the drops blob in and out of the screen increased the birth size to 0.5 and death to 0.4. The displacement maps should be the same. Just change the vertical displacement to about 50 and readjust the timeline until it looks good. to you. We'll make the smear a little more see through by lowering the opacity to around 50%. Finally, we're ready to add a little drops onto the screen to finish this effect. Once again, duplicate the drops one layer and rename it little drops and put it below the other drop Players change the velocity to zero. Increase the birth rate to about 150 because we want a lot of them to cover the screen. Change the longevity to 10 seconds. Reduced gravity and resistance to zero. So they stick on the screen a lot longer, since they're so small and change animation to explosive. Make the drops tiny by changing the birth size to zero 0.4 and the death size to 0.3 Change the max vertical displacement to eight. Hit your space bar, and we'll see how the illusion comes to life. With these main effects in place, we can move on to creating the ripples in the water 5. Water Ripples: I think this lesson will add ripples in the water. The effect will require a new and separate composition to be rendered out tow. Avoid complications when creating the final gift. Begin by going to composition and selecting new name it drizzle. Make sure that it's the same frame rate of 24 that it runs for five seconds long. Click okay with our new composition created, make a new solid layer. Name it. Drizzle and click on the color box to make a gray. With the new miracle setting of 0% 0% 50% and at an RGB setting of 1 20 click OK. To finalize our results, apply the effect called CC drizzle. Right now the ripples are too big and we can change the drip rate. 15 spreading to 25 and the light intensity to 250. Now let's render this composition out by going to composition. Add to render queue clothe, render settings to make sure it's set to best, and that it renders at 24 frames per second. Click on the output module and select B and G sequence for render form. It was like OK, click on output to select a folder that you can run to the images to make sure that it's easy to find, since we'll be accessing Berries and finally click on Render Way. Don't need the drizzle comp anymore, so exit out of it. Go back to the main composition and import PNG sequence way just created way Drag sequence below your drops Waken Hide the great color by switching the mode from normal to overly. If you don't see the option available, remember the toggle switch button at the bottom. To make the ripples part of our scenery, we need to change. The angle and perspective of our layer. Will do this by making it a three D layer click on the three D Cube and make sure you're on the correct layer. Let's hide any layers. We don't need to increase the computers. Performance with the drizzle layer Selected. Click are on the keyboard to bring up the rotation options. Play around with the rotations to make the drizzle layer fit best in your seat. If you're imported. Sequence layer is too short. It's probably due to the footage being interpreted at the wrong frame rate. I can see that mine imported at 30 frames per second, but the main composition is at 24 frames per second. To fix this right click the PNG sequence go to interpret footage mean and assume a frame rate 24. That looks much better if you notice we have a section of the image that needs toe overlap the drizzle effect. We can create a mask on the drizzle layer by using the pen tool to draw around the areas. We want to show the ripples, and if you have multiple surfaces that could be affected by the rain, duplicate the drizzle effect and adjust the rotation or scale. In this example, I'm going to keep it simple and Onley affect swath. All right, everyone, we're done with this effect. Now we can figure out how to add more waves to the water and a layer of fog rolling gently across the scenery. 6. Rolling Fog and Waves: oh way have our main components finished for the project. Let's create a layer of fog rolling in the foreground. Create a new solid and name it fog. Make sure the dimensions are the same as a scene and ensure the gray is the same as the one used for the drizzle effect. Apply the fractal noise effect to the fog layer, change the contrast to 150 increase the brightness to 15. Make the complexity. 10. Expand the transform tab and increase the scale to 320 to make the fog larger and softer. Look, we want the fog toe role, so we'll set a key frame on the first frame by clicking on the rotation stopwatch. Then move the time slider to the last frame and changed the rotation to five degrees. Now you can see that there is a very gentle rotation. Go back to frame one and click on the stopwatch for offset turbulence. Move the slider to the last frame and move the ox. It a little to the left and a little bit of waken. Make the fog pattern adjust over time with a simple expression by Ault clicking the evolution stopwatch. Bring up on expression editor. Type the word time times 80. To make the fall connect to the environment, change the mode from normal to soft light. Click on the transform tab to lower the opacity to about 45% and make any adjustments to the layer that you think would fit best. Drag the fog layer and put it below the drops later, for our next effect will add some turbulence to the water. I will do this by duplicating the background image and renaming it, then mask out the water feature so the effect on Lee applies to it. You can see the rest of the background is masked up. Search for a turbulent displace and added to your waves layer decrease the size to seven. We're gonna add another expression by Ault clicking the evolution stopwatch type the word time times to 50. If I zoom in, you can see what we've done. I was pretty simple. Finally, I want to add some text to the scene to make it more like a digital postcard. Click on the text tool at the top and draw text box on the right hand side. You can see the settings to change the font style, the size and positioning of your text. You can change the color of your text and even sample the colors from your scene with the eyedropper tool. I'm gonna leave the text layer above the others, so it's clearly visible from the other effects. Don't forget to save your aftereffects project. Now we're ready to render a project and turn it into an animated digital postcard gift in Photoshopped. 7. Make an Animated GIF: Okay, Now we're ready to turn our project into a digital postcard and send it to our friends and family again by cleaning up and deleting any layers that you don't want to use. Way. Wonder file size to be a smallest possible in creating the gift, and one way to do this is by lowering the frame rate in our project will lower it to six frames per second. Next, we'll add our project to the render queue by going to composition. Add to render queue. Click on the render settings to make sure the dimensions and frame rate are correct. Click on output module and change the format to PNG sequence. Click on output to select the folder for your PNG image files to be stored it rendered to generate your PNG sequence. Now we'll open up photos up to create our gift. Go to file open. Locate your PNG Sequence folder. Make sure image sequence is checked and click open. A dialogue box will open to see what frame rate the sequence should be read. Act. Make sure it's set to six if you're sequence opens, but a timeline does not appear at the bottom of the page Goto window Timeline toe. Open it up. That's create our gift will go to file save for Web and you'll see our sequence and a bunch of options. Options I've chosen are the ones that have given me the best quality versus file size. Make sure you have gifts selected. I find adaptive to be the most pleasant to the eye. It's like no dither. 32 colors works well, and 64 colors is very similar, but increases a file size, so I'll stick with 32 colors Now. This next part I always forget. Make sure to set your animation option to looping forever. That way you ensure the video plays on. Repeat. When the recipient received Click Save and put It Somewhere you confined easily. You can test out your gift by locating the file and opening it in your favorite Web browser . Before I show you how to send a gift by email, I want to go back to our Aftereffects project and show you how to render it out as an actual video file, go to your composition settings and change the frame rate back to 24 frames per second. I think we'll add the composition to the render Cute Way and change the output module to quick Time and and select a compression format of H 0.264 way. Don't have audio, so turn that off. Select a folder, toe out. Put your video and hit. Render. Okay. Now let's send someone our digital postcard log into your email provider and in the space where you would normally compose an email dragon, drop your gift filed into the body of the message. It may take a few seconds to upload, but once the image appears, it's ready to be sent away. No way did it. We made a digital postcard for a rainy day. Pretty cool, right? Share your project with me and the rest of the skill share community by showing off your work in the student gallery. Up next, we'll review the class project. 8. Final Project Settings: Thank you for joining me on this project. Show off your new skills by posting your animated GIF to the student gallery. When you posted the student gallery, you help bring exposure to the class, which helps to keep it alive and growing. So please participate and show us what you come up with. For this project. Your digital postcards should include at least two of the five main effects that we've covered in this class. Those effects include rain particles, drops on the screen, ripples in the water, waves in the water and fog rolling gently across the scenery. Remember to keep the gift at five seconds and allow it to Luke continuously with saving and Photoshopped. This project involved a lot of numbers. So for your convenience, I've included a screenshot of the main effect sightings in the project description. You can use my settings for practice or experiment with your own. Thanks everyone for your time and attention. I hope you had a good time and you learned a thing or two. Thanks again. And remember, keep on creating