Create then Animate: Beginner Workflow in Illustrator & After Effects | Megan Friesth | Skillshare

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Create then Animate: Beginner Workflow in Illustrator & After Effects

teacher avatar Megan Friesth, Motion Designer

Watch this class and thousands more

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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

22 Lessons (3h 6m)
    • 1. Welcome

      2:46
    • 2. Class Project

      0:50
    • 3. Gather Inspiration

      8:34
    • 4. Create a Moodboard

      6:46
    • 5. Sketch

      11:25
    • 6. Tour of Adobe Illustrator

      7:49
    • 7. Line Art - Part 1

      14:35
    • 8. Line Art - Part 2

      13:44
    • 9. Line Art - Part 3

      15:50
    • 10. Line Art - Part 4

      6:42
    • 11. Set Up Colors

      7:32
    • 12. Color Blocking

      13:48
    • 13. Separate Illustration into Layers

      4:00
    • 14. Add Final Details to Illustration

      13:52
    • 15. Tour of After Effects

      6:55
    • 16. Animate Sun and Moon

      9:07
    • 17. Animate Sky

      10:18
    • 18. Animate Stars

      8:53
    • 19. Animate Smoke

      3:44
    • 20. Animate Snow

      12:44
    • 21. Render

      4:15
    • 22. What's Next

      1:33
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About This Class

Explore a complete workflow from illustration to animation in Adobe Illustrator and After Effects.

If you've been wanting to get into animation, but haven't known where to start, this class is for you.

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Have you been hesitant to get into animation because you didn't think you were good enough at drawing, or felt that the software was too intimidating?

What if I told you that you don't even really have to draw to illustrate? And that adding motion to your illustration is achievable, even if you've never opened After Effects before.

Using this winter cabin scene as an example, I'll show you my complete workflow starting from inspiration and planning through illustrating and animating. Here's what's covered:

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You'll learn how to:

  • find inspiration yet still create a unique piece of work
  • organize your ideas into a moodboard
  • get ideas out of your head by sketching
  • use your sketch as a starting point for illustration
  • utilize basic shapes to create an outlined illustration
  • use the pen tool to create organic shapes
  • color your illustration and add details
  • prepare your illustration for animation
  • import your illustration into After Effects
  • animate an object's position and adjust its motion path
  • create masks
  • animate colors changing
  • animate scale and opacity
  • use the wave warp effect to animate smoke
  • animate snow (and make it loop!)
  • render (export) your animation as a .mov, .mp4, or gif file

Plus loads of tips for working efficiently that will get you started on the right foot. This is the class I needed when I was first getting started in motion design!

I'll show you every step to recreate my wintery scene, but in doing this, every step will teach you something useful that you'll surely come across when creating your own illustrations and animations. Depending on how comfortable you’re feeling, you can follow along with me, or create your own version of a scene that looks a little like mine, or nothing like mine–it’s up to you!

This class is perfect for beginners to Adobe Illustrator and After Effects; no prior experience with either program is necessary. But, if you are already a seasoned artist, this class will help you understand how you can add motion to your work.

If you're interested in getting into motion design this is a perfect first step!

After this class, check out my other classes to keep learning!

Find me online:

My website

Instagram

Pinterest

YouTube

Music credit: Track: Travel With Us — Vendredi [Audio Library Release], Music provided by Audio Library Plus

Meet Your Teacher

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Megan Friesth

Motion Designer

Top Teacher

Hi! I'm Megan Friesth, a motion designer and illustrator from Boulder, Colorado. For my job I create explanimations–that is educational animations–and here I create education on how to animate! I have degrees in physiology and creative technology & design. By combining these two disciplines I create explanimations that help patients with chronic diseases understand complex medical information and take control of their health. When I'm not inside Adobe Illustrator or After Effects, I love traveling, running, skiing, yoga, and doing craft projects.

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Transcripts

1. Welcome: Have you been wanting to get into animation, to be more competitive in today's job market, to add movement and life to your work, or just to expand your skill set? Maybe you've held back because you felt like you weren't good enough at drawing, or thought that, the software was too intimidating to learn. Well, what if I told you that you don't even really need to draw to illustrate? The adding motion to your illustration is achievable even if you've never opened up After Effects before. Welcome to create then animate, a complete workflow from Adobe Illustrator to After Effects. If you can wanting to get into animation, but having nowhere to start, this class is for you. I'm Megan Friesth, and I'm an explanimator. I may have made up that word, but I write, illustrate, and animate, educational animations mostly on health and environment related topics. I didn't go to art school. I actually studied physiology. Through animation, I found a way to combine my fascination for science with my creative side to create educational animations. Although I went on to get a master's degree in Creative Technology and Design, mostly my Illustration and animation skills are self-taught. I always illustrate all of the artwork for my animations, because I like complete control over the entire creative process. In this class, I'll show you how you can do the same. This is the class that I needed when I was first getting started in motion design. Using this winter cabin scene as an example, I'll show you my complete workflow starting from inspiration and planning. I'll showing you why you don't need to be a pro at drawing and how we can instead utilize basic shapes to create a symbol vector cell illustration in Adobe Illustrator. Rather than drawing each frame to create an animation, I'll show you how After Effects does the tedious work of calculating every image for you. We'll import our illustrations into After Effects and make it come alive with some totally achievable animations, even if you've never use After Effects before. I'll show you every step to recreate this winter cabin scene. But in doing so, every step will teach you something useful that you'll surely come across when creating your own illustrations and animations. Depending on how comfortable your feeling, you can follow along with me, or create your own scene that looks a little like mine, or nothing like mine. It's up to you. This class is perfect for beginners to Adobe Illustrator and After Effects. Your prior experience with either program is necessary. But if you're already a seasoned artists, this class will help you understand how you can add motion to your work. If you're wanting to get into motion design, then this is a perfect first step. If you're ready to create then animate, let's get started. 2. Class Project: The project for this class is to illustrate and animate a winter scene. It could be your favorite place to be in the winter or something from your imagination. As you watch the lessons, you can follow along with me to recreate this winter scene. It's okay to post a project that looks exactly like mine. But if you're up for it, try to make your own version. As you're working, remember that this is not my first After Effects project, but it might be yours. Try not to compare your work to others and just enjoy the process of learning something new. If you have any questions along the way, feel free to post in the discussions tab below this video. If it helps you to learn, I've provided my illustrator and After Effects project files in the projects and resources tab below this video. You won't need these files to complete the class, but they're there if you want to check them out. 3. Gather Inspiration: Usually, my first step when creating an illustration to be animated is to gather inspiration and brainstorm ideas. I know that I want to do a winter- themed illustration for this project. I'm thinking of a cabin in the mountains or woods, but I'm not exactly sure, what it's going to look like yet. I know I want to use a simple vector style of illustration, so not highly detailed. But I don't have all of the details of what that's going look like figured out yet. Whenever I can, I like to take my own reference photos of things that I want to illustrate. I do this a lot, especially if I need to illustrate hands in a certain way or if I'm illustrating something, that I can easily find around my house. That way, I don't have to worry about copying other artists' work as much. Sometimes, taking my own photos for reference or inspiration doesn't always work out. Like in this case, going to a cabin in the woods is not going to happen. But luckily we have the Internet. I'm going to start with a quick Google Search, to narrow down my idea. I'm going to do like winter cabin, and just see what comes up, see if it gives me any ideas. I'll go over to Images. Let's see. Well, I really like this A-frame cabin. This one's cute too. If I see something I like, maybe like this one, I'll just click on it and then right-click the image, and save to "Downloads". That way, I can just start building up a folder of things that I like. I think I'm going to go with this A-frame cabin in my illustration. Let's see, if we find any other A-frame cabins. We could actually change our search a little. I'm starting to get a little cabin envy here. I wish I was in one of these places right now. This one's kind of cool with the snow on the roof, how we can see it because of the angle that the cabin is at. So maybe, I'll save this one. All right, so I won't make you watch me scroll through all these cabins because I could spend a long time doing it. Here's the cabins that I've collected so far. I'm just making a folder of all of them on my computer, so I can go back to them. Now, I'm going to jump into Pinterest, and start looking at different styles of illustration. All right, I'm going to do a search for winter illustration. I'm going to change this from, where it says all pins to just your pins, so that I can see just the pin that I've already pinned. Because I use Pinterest a lot, and I know that I probably have accumulated some winter illustrations along the way and that will just save me some time. Because I already know that I like these ones. I'm starting to notice, how different illustrators have used snow because that could be a challenging thing to illustrate because it's white. We have to think about the background or maybe blending it into the background, like this one, that's kind of cool. I'm also going to do the same thing as I was doing on Google Images, and just download illustrations that I really like. If I scroll down even further, then it's going to start showing me more ideas, based on this winter illustration search. That could be useful for anything that I haven't pinned here. This illustration is cool because it's masked in this organic shape. That's how we define the edges of the illustration. I could think about doing something like that. Here's another example of that. As I'm looking through these illustrations, I don't want to just copy one certain style. I want to pick out different little pieces that I like from different illustrations, from lots of different illustrations, so that I make sure that I'm making something that's unique. I like how in this illustration, the illustration has a rough edge, where elements in the illustration are blending into the background color. Maybe, that's something that I could think about doing with the snow, and my illustration will look completely different than this because I'll be using white snow, and my scene won't be as detailed and I'll have a cabin, but I can take that idea from this illustration. I might want to download this for reference later, just to remind me that I had that idea from this illustration. I can switch this to all pins to get some more ideas. I can even change my search. I'm already getting some A-frame cabins, but I could do that specifically. The only problem is that when you search for something too specifically, is that you might find something that you fall in love with, and then you want to copy it exactly. You got to be super careful about that. After some more time in Pinterest, that I didn't want to bore you with, I've come up with this folder of different illustrations with different ideas, that I can use for my illustration. Let me walk you through some of the ideas that I'm having so far. In this one, I really like how there's minimal colors. I like how the white snow makes it fade into the background color of the white or off-white. I really like the mountains in the background. I also like the smoke. I think that could be really fun to animate. As you're looking through illustrations, you might come across animations, but also start to think about what you could animate in the scene. Smoke is a good one. I like how this one is so simple. But I like how the shape of the hills is really smooth and flowing. There's simple trees with just little bits of detail. Water could be fun. Having a sun could be fun. Clouds. But I like just the simplicity of that one, and also this one. Same thing with the curves. Here's another photograph. I really like this one, and I need to be careful, that I don't copy any of these that I really like. Some of the things that I like about this one are the angle of it. I like how you can see the snow on the roof dripping down. I think I might try an angle like this. I also like how there's no defined edge. The snow just fades everything into the background. In this one, it's a lot more detailed, and it has textures which I know I'm not going to be doing. But I included this one here because I really like how everything is dark, and the cabin is all lit up. It looks like someone's home, and it's nice and cozy in there when it's all cold outside. I like that feeling. I'm going to try to replicate that in my illustration. Now this one, I like how simple all of these houses are, and how bright and bold the colors are. I think I want to go for a similar color palette, not exactly like this, and maybe a similar level of detail in my cabin. I also like how the background is off-white, and then we have this white smoke coming out. I think I might try an off-white in my illustration. This one is by the same artist, and it actually isn't A-frame cabin. I don't want to copy this exactly, and I'm going to need to be careful because when you start getting multiple references from the same artist, it can be easier to come out with something that looks just like that artist's work. I'll just need to be careful with that. But I do like how, he has a different style of trees in this one. I can see how he uses the level of detail in his cabin. I think I might want mine to be a little bit more detailed, but we'll experiment. Some more photographs. This one I really like the windows. I like how like the whole thing is filled with windows, and how this shape of window is. Maybe, I'll try some similar windows in my cabin. I also like the color, this greenish color. Maybe, I'll try that color for my cabin. This one again, I like the simplicity. It's the same artist, as a couple images ago. Again, be careful with multiple things from the same artist. But I like the smoke, the angle, the simplicity, and also the cozy night feeling. This one, I already talked about. That's my general process for finding inspiration on the Internet, when it's harder to go out in real life, and find the inspiration because that would have been my first choice. You could definitely go to other sites for inspiration too like Dribble, Behance or Instagram, to name a few. 4. Create a Moodboard: My next step is to organize all of my inspiration and ideas into a mood board. If I was working with a client for this project, this would be something that I show to them to make sure that we're on the same page before moving forward. But even for a personal project like this, I like to lay out all my ideas and have them all organized so that I can come back to them as I'm working, especially if I get stuck. Since this is just for our own use, you could just collect your reference images in a folder like I already did. Or you could create a Pinterest board or something like that. But otherwise we might arrange them side-by-side so I can see them more easily. I'm just going to use Illustrator to put together this mood board. Since it's just the new document menu. If you don't already see this when you open up illustrator, you can just hit ''Command N'' or ''File New''. I'm just going to use an artboard that is 1920 pixels by 1080 pixels. Make sure it's on RGB color. Just because this is always going to be digital. I'll just hit ''Create''. Now what I'm going to do is drag in all my reference images. I'll just go grab that folder and I'll just drag and drop my images in. I'm going to select multiple at once. I'm going to skip some of the photographs because I don't have too much on my mood board, but I'll keep them in this folder. I'll just drop all of these on to my Illustrator file. Now keep in mind that all of these files are linked into Illustrator. So if you were to move the folder on your computer or move them out of the folder, then illustrator would not know where they went and you would get a missing link notification. If you want to make sure that your images are always going to stay in this file and they're actually saved in this file. You can just hit the Embed button and make sure that you have your images selected in order to see that embed button. Now what I can do is just drag these around and kind of format them on my artboard. I'm going to leave the image off to the side. I don't actually want that to be on my artboard. I can shrink these down. When you're shrinking down an image, make sure that you hold down ''Shift'' to make sure that it retains its proportions. I'm speeding this section up because all I'm doing here is moving the images around. But don't worry when we get into illustration within Adobe Illustrator I'll go much more slowly so you can follow along. If you have an image like this that has some white space on the sides that you want to get rid of. You can have the image selected and then click Mask up here at the top. Then you can drag the edges in to mask out that extra white space. Here's what I've come up with for my mood board. I like to make sure that everything is clean and organized and everything is lined up. But if I'm not showing client, it doesn't really matter. You'll notice that I've left these two off because if I was going to show this to a client, I wouldn't want these ones on there because they don't fit in with the style of the rest of these images as well. Another thing you could do with the mood board is actually write out what specific things you like about this different pieces that you've included. Write some of the ideas that you want to try. Or you could just write some texts, like I left some space for here. That just describes the general feeling or mood of your mood board. I'll just go over to the Text tool and then click on my artboard to start a line of text. I'm just going to write mood board, which is just to make this look nice. I'll go to my file up here. To resizes this I can either adjust the font here or I can just scale this up and make sure that I'm holding down ''Shift'' to scale this proportionally. You can also click on Character to go in and adjust some of the character settings. I'm going to do something like all caps. Maybe adjust the space between characters. I'm just getting fancy here. This is not super necessary for the rest of our project. Then I'm going to go back to my text tool and make another line of text. So I'll just click and I'm just going to write a little description that says, ''Clean, vector style illustration with bold colors and a cozy wintry feel''. I'm going to adjust the text on this really quick. Let's just make it regular texts and not all capitals and take away the spacing between the letters. Then I'll just scale this up. Something like that looks pretty good. Now I need to save this. I'm going to hit ''Command'' or ''Control S'' to save. I'm just going to save this in the same folder as I saved my inspiration. You can see I have this snowy cabin scene folder where I'm going to be saving everything that I make for this project. Then I have my snowy scene inspiration folder, which just seems like a good place to store the mood board. It already contains all the images from the mood board. I'll just save the mood board there too and hit ''Save'' and ''Okay''. Before we move on to the next video where we're going to take the ideas and inspiration from this mood board to make our very own piece. All I'm just say, I know about using the mood board and making sure that you're not copying. So for this class is perfectly fine to copy the exact illustration that I make for this class because it's for learning purposes. If you want to copy an artist that you really admire, you can do that to learn. It's actually a good idea to learn how they do it. Because you'll find out things by copying their work exactly that you wouldn't know just by looking at the piece of work. But you should never, ever, ever, ever post that online because that is stealing. Make sure that when you use the mood board that you've created for your project, that you're just taking different ideas from the different pieces and you're not making something that looks like a replica of any one piece. I know this can be hard when you find a piece of work that you really like and you just want to make something just like it. I've been there. But if you've ever had someone copy your work, you know that it doesn't feel good. Why would you want to do that to somebody else? With that said, let's take this inspiration and create something that's our very own. 5. Sketch: Now that I've gathered some inspiration, and organized all of my ideas into a mood board. It's time to start sketching out what my illustration might look like. Now, I know I said that you don't have to be good at drawing, but hear me out. The point of sketching is just to take an idea that's starting to form in your head, and to flush it out onto paper or digital paper, to see what's working and what's not. I would consider sketching an optional but highly recommended step. I honestly don't sketch out all of my illustrations every time, but I often find it useful. I find that a lot of times if I just jump right into Illustrator without a plan, then find myself spinning my wheels. I know that starting with a blank piece of paper and sketching out an idea can be intimidating. I don't consider myself good at drawing. I'm not one of those people who can just draw something with a Sharpie in two seconds and it looks fabulous on the first try, at least I'm not there yet. We're going to be using our sketch as a reference when we get into Illustrator, but in Illustrator we can make everything look a lot better. So your sketch definitely doesn't have to be perfect. If you want to include your sketch in your class project, you're more than welcome to but if you never ever want anyone to see your sketch, that's totally fine too. Your final illustration might not look much like your sketch, and that's okay. The point of sketching is just to get ideas out of your head and see what's working. I personally like to sketch with Procreate on my iPad because it helps me make all my lines straight and my circles perfect, and stuff like that. But before I got my iPad, I used pencil and paper and I assure you that that absolutely works just fine. So just use whatever tools you're comfortable with. Whether that's pencil and paper, Procreate, Photoshop or something else. Again, you definitely do not need an iPad for this class. I'm here in Procreate and I have a new blank canvas and the canvas settings and the brush that I'm going to use, none of that really matters because you could do this in any medium. The only thing to keep in mind is that you don't want to make your sketch too tiny because it'll be harder to use. I'm going to start with the main focus of my scene, which is the cabin. I'll first just draw a line across. This is the ground. You'll notice that I like to hold down when I finish drawing a line because then it'll make it a straight line for me. There's our ground, it's not even perfectly straight but none of that really matters for this sketch. Then I'm going to start with the cabin. So I'll start with the roof, doing that A-frame, triangle roof. Something like that. Sometimes if I'm struggling to get the right angle for something, like for this cabin, if I wasn't sure that I liked this angle, I would take a photograph like one of the reference images that I've already gathered and I'll bring that into Procreate and just trace that shape to make sure that I'm getting the right angle or that I'm in at least right ballpark. If you're not using a digital tool to sketch, let me show you how you can get resourceful. Just get your reference image up on any screen. It could be like your phone screen. Then you can hold the paper up to your screen and very gently, you can just lightly trace the image onto your paper. Just be careful that you don't press down too hard and damage your screen. If you're ever having trouble with your sketch like something just isn't looking right and you don't know why, one thing you can do is find a photograph and then use that as reference to see where you're going wrong. Like in this example, if I was having trouble with the look of the A-frame cabin, maybe it's because I have the angle wrong. Using a photograph can help with those kinds of situations. This is going to be the roof and then I need to draw the inside of the roof. So I'm going to draw a parallel line here like that, and the other side as well. You can see that I don't draw straight lines very well, so Procreate really helps me. That's inside of a roof and then I'm also going to have the inside part of this side of the roof showing. So I'll just draw a line for that, like that. Then I'm going to draw this out like a forest perspective angle. What I mean by that, is just that this is not how a house will look in real life, but it's still going to be realistic enough that will know what it is. So I'm going to draw the roof out like this, like in one of my reference images. Then this line will be parallel to that front line like that. That's starting to look like a cabin or maybe a tent, so let's add a door here and maybe a triangle window up here. Maybe some window by the door, something like that. I liked that shape from one of my reference images. That's looking more like a cabin rather than a tent. Let's even add another window over here. I'm going to try doing another triangle window, so I'll just do triangle. That angle looks a little bit too steep, let me try that again. Maybe something like that. I might have to adjust this later in my illustration and something like that maybe. I might have wanted to push it a little bit that way, but that's okay. We'll fix this. No one's going to see the sketch besides us. That's the edge of the roof and then here's a triangle window here. Something like that. Definitely needs to go the right, but we'll leave it for now. This is just a sketch. I'm going to add a chimney. We're also going to see the side of this chimney and then that's the front. Then you'd extend this line to connect, something like that. Then I will top to the chimney, here we're going to have some smoke coming out of here, something like that. Maybe we'll add a little deck to this. So we can actually use this ground line as the deck or like porch thing that the cabin is sitting on. I'll just go to my eraser and make this line more shorter, something like that. Then stand it down, and we will add some steps over here, this end. Something like that. I also want to add some hills. So maybe there's a hill coming like this. It's that nice curvy line that I had in one of my reference images. But I could probably do better and I'll try that again with my illustration. I'm going to shorten this line and make another little bump right here. Maybe another one coming from this way, something like that. Let's add in some trees. So maybe I'll put a tree over here. It's a little bit absurd but that's okay, and maybe we will say that the tree is behind this hill. So I'm just going to erase this. Now, if you are using this sketch for something else later or this was going to be your final illustration, you probably don't want to just erase things because you might change your mind, but this doesn't matter it's just a sketch, so just erase the lines that I don't want. Even on this chimney, I can just erase these lines. You'll notice that I'm not using layers or anything, which is why you can do this with pen and paper. Everything is going to be on the same layer. We're only going to use this as reference. Let's draw some more trees. Maybe there's some behind here. These are going to be behind the house even. I might even change up my style of tree, its force in different styles in my illustration. But for now, we'll just draw the simple trees, maybe there's some behind the house even more. A little bit wonky shift. Then let's add in some mountains in the background. Maybe I have like a little one here and then that's going to get bigger. Maybe another big one back here. Something to that effect. We could also add some clouds. Maybe there's a cloud that's behind this tree and maybe if you look through, look like a sun or a moon or something like that. I haven't decided if I'm going to make this day or night but I'm going to try both ways in the illustration. You'll notice that in the sketching phase I'm not using any colors, but I'm just starting to think about what color it's going to be. I know the trees are going to be green and maybe there'll be a sky color and maybe the mountains will have some color or the hills, somehow I need to differentiate from the background. I'm going to try maybe doing that thing where the white of the snow fades into the background color, which is also white. But I also could play with off-white. So really I'm not sure right now, but I'm starting to think about these things in the back of my head. Maybe I'll add a little sun coming up behind the mountains or maybe it's setting. I think that's going to do it for my sketch. Obviously this is not a masterpiece, but I think it'll work for what we need it to, which is just to use as reference for illustration. The goal here was really just to get some ideas out of my head and figure out the layout of how my scene might look. The next step is to get an image file of your sketch. If you did this with pencil and paper, just take a photograph of your sketch and try to make sure that you are directly above your sketch and then either e-mail that or AirDrop it to your computer. If you worked digitally, you also just need to get an image file. So here I'll just make a PNG and then I'd like to just AirDrop that to my computer. In the next video, I'll show you how to import your sketch image into Adobe Illustrator so that we can use it as a reference for creating our illustration. 6. Tour of Adobe Illustrator: Now it's time to start working on our illustration within Adobe Illustrator. You'll see here that I have my sketch that's just an image file, any image file will do. I created a new folder within my main folder for this project called AI for Adobe Illustrator and I just dropped this sketch in there. Then I'm going to go over to Adobe Illustrator. When you open it up, you should see this new document window pop up. If you don't, you can always get to it by going, File, New or hitting Command or Control N. For this project, I'm going to work in a square format and I'm just going to do 1080 pixels by 1080 pixels. If you don't already have this custom template set up, you can just type in your dimensions here. Make sure you have it set to pixels, and then also choose RGB color because RGB color is best for digital, and that's what we're going to be doing here. We're not going to print this out. That also means you don't have to worry about the bleeds, and then 72 PPI is fine because this is for screens. That should be all that you have to do, and then just hit Create. Now, it will set up a new artboard for you. This is your artboard where you're going to do your illustration and your user interface is probably going to look something like this. By default, you should be seeing the essentials workspace. Now when you saw me working in Illustrator and the mood board lesson, I was using my custom workspace, so it looks a little bit different. Let me show you how I got to that place of a custom workspace. If you go up to window, you can see all of these different options here. These are all different panels that you can use. Let's just take a simple one, like stroke for example. This is going to have your stroke weight. A stroke is basically just a line and the weight is the thickness of that line. These little panels are movable. You could just bring this over and you'll get this blue highlighted line and that means that you can drop that in and then you can customize your workspace that way. I'm going to reset this by going up here and choosing My Workspace, and that's the name that I chose for my workspace. Pretty obvious. This is how I've set up my workspace and I have colors, swatches. These are just colors that I can pick from easily. You can save custom swatches, but we're not going to get into that quite yet. I also have my stroke panel and this is extended so it shows a little bit more options like you can adjust the end of your strokes and stuff like that. You'll notice as I click through these, they expand and contract, when I click on the tab, I use the Pathfinder a lot, so we will work with that later. Artboards is for if you have multiple of these different artboards within your document, we're just going to be working with one today. I also like to have the layers because it's going to be really important that we separate our illustration now into layers so we can animate it easily. Properties has a bunch of little shortcuts for you to use. Libraries is where you can save things from your CC library. I've created this color palette as a CC library. You can also save like graphics and symbols and stuff like that in your libraries, but we're not going to be using much of that in this class. You'll also see that I have overlord down here. This is a plug-in, so it's like an add-on to Illustrator. It doesn't come with illustrator, and we're not going to be needing that in this class. Overlord is a way to get your illustration from Illustrator to aftereffects and I use that all the time in my personal workflow. It is something that you have to pay extra for. It doesn't come with Illustrator. So we're not going to be using in this class. I'm actually just going to close that so that you don't have to worry about it. We're not going to use it for this class. All right, so over on the left you'll see this tool panel. Yours might be looking more like that. I just prefer to have mine in the two column view. So all you have to do is click this arrow to see it in that view. This is your selection tool. This is a tool that we use like most of the time unless we're doing something else, and you'll see what I mean by that in just a second. Before we do anything, let's just save this so we don't have to worry about that as much later. You can either go to File Save or I would highly recommend starting to use the shortcuts and I'll try to call them out as much as possible as I use them. So the shortcut is going to be Command for a Mac, and Control for a PC, that's pretty standard and then S. Command or Control S, and then just navigate to where on your computer you want to save this. In my main project folder, I'm going to go into my illustrator folder and just save it there. Let's name this snowy cabin illustration and just hit Save and okay. All right, so now we have this saved. Now we can just hit Command S periodically when we're working to just save it. All right, so the first thing I want to do is bring my sketch into Illustrator so I can use that as a reference as I start to illustrate. I'm just going to go into my finder, find the sketch, and then just drag it onto my artboard. It just comes in just like that, just like how I did with my mood board. You'll see that it has this x over the image. That just means that it's linked between Illustrator and the folder that it's stored into my computer. If you want to, you can just embed it so that in case you move something, it doesn't get lost and disconnected. I'm going to bring this over and center it and scale it up. Maybe that's a little bit big. I'm holding down Shift as I'm scaling this to make sure that I'm not squashing or stretching it in a weird way. Shift maintains the proportions. Something like that, maybe that's a little high. It doesn't have to be perfect. We can always change it off later. That looks pretty good. You'll see over my Layers panel. Remember that, if you don't have one of the panels that I'm talking about, you can just go up to Window and make sure that that panel is checked. If it's checked and then it's somewhere on your screen, you might have to do a little hunting for it. You can always rearrange your panels by just clicking and dragging them and then when you see that blue highlighted line, that means you can move it into that position. All right, so I have this sketch, and this is on my layer 1, which is the only layer that I have so far. What I want to do is just lock this layer so that I don't accidentally move it or mess it up while I'm doing my illustration on top of this layer. Then I'm going to create a new layer by clicking this new layer plus button down at the bottom of my screen and that's going to create layer 2 right on top of my sketch layer. Now I'm going to want to lower the opacity of my sketch so it's easier to illustrate on top of it. So let me just unlock that really quick. You can select everything on a layer by just clicking over here in this area. You can see that selected my sketch. Up here at the top, I'm just going to take the opacity down to like 50 percent, maybe even like 30 percent and then just lock that again. That was a quick little tour of illustrator and you'll get more comfortable as we start using Illustrator in the next videos. Now you should have your sketch. It should be on its own layer locked and you have a new layer where you're ready to start your illustration in the next video. 7. Line Art - Part 1: In this video, you're going to start to see why you don't have to be good at drawing by hand, to be able to illustrate something. We're going to use the shape tool a lot. The shape tool is this one over here. By default, you'll probably see it as a rectangle, but if you click on it, there's a bunch more shapes under here that you can use. Let's start with the main part of our scene, the cabin. Let's make a triangle for that A-framed roof. I'm going to go down to the polygon tool. I'm clicking and holding to get to this again. Then you'll see that I have this polygon selected here. If I were to just click and drag, it would make a shape. Now my polygon tool made a triangle, because that's probably the last shape that I made. If yours didn't make a triangle right off the back. You can actually just click once on your artboard, and it'll bring up this little window where you can adjust the settings. Just bring the sides down to three to make a triangle. We can adjust the radius later, so I'm not going to worry about that now. Then just hit ''Okay''. My triangle was created in a white color with no stroke. When you see this red slashed line, that means there's no color here. I don't want mine to be white, I actually wanted to have a stroke. I'm going to just hit the ''None'' button for the fill color. No fill color, and I'm going to click on the stroke. Whichever of these squares is on top is the one that is active that you are going to be adjusting. I'll just click to bring my stroke color on top. Then I'm just going to select black. We want no fill and a black stroke. You'll see now that my triangle is just a black line. The first phase of illustration, I'm basically just going to recreate my sketch, but make it look a little bit better. I'm just going to be making shapes with black strokes and you'll see that sometimes I might use a white fill. If I need to block out another one that's overlapping, but basically just recreating the sketch. I'm not going to be using color in my illustration until later on in the process. I'd like to make sure that my composition looks good by just using black and white. Just to make sure that the colors aren't throwing me off. Because if the colors look bad, and the composition looks bad, I might not be able to distinguish what I don't like about my illustration. Whether it's the colors, or the composition. If I don't use any colors at first, I can more closely see what's wrong about the composition or if it's all looking good, and then I can move on to coloring my artwork. Let's continue. This little black stroke on this triangle is a little bit thin, it's going to be a little harder to see. I'm just going to click on my stroke panel. Remember, one more time, if you don't see any of the panels that I'm using, it's going to be under Window. Then just make sure that panel is checked and you can drag it into whatever position you want it in. With this shape selected, I'm just going to increase the stroke width to maybe like three points. Now I can just click and drag this into position. We're starting to see that I didn't draw my sketch perfectly straight. I'm actually going to unlock my sketch, select it by clicking over here, or clicking the sketch in the artboard. Then I'm just going to go over to one of these little known things right here along the selection. You'll see your mouse change to have these two little arrows like this, and then you can click and drag to rotate your sketch. That looks like a little bit more straight. I'll just go back over here and lock that. Now let's resize this triangle to match this shape. I'm just going to drag the top point down. Notice that I'm on my regular selection tool now. Then I want to make it a little bit less wide. I'm going to hold down the option key while dragging. So that'll drag proportionately both sides of my triangle. If I were to do that same resize without the option key, you'll see that it just moves from one side. But I liked how it was moving from both sides, because I already have my triangle in the right position. If I hold on option, that's going to shrink it from both sides and something like that looks good. But, this is a little bit hard for me to see, so let's zoom in a bit. To zoom in and you art board, you can either use the zoom tool over here in your toolbar, or you can hit "Command", or "Control plus". That's the shortcut key that I use all the time. Our triangle's a little bit too long down here. Let's drag it up and we can scoot it over. If you want to just do something precise, you can use the arrow keys on your keyboard to nudge things over. Remember that my sketch wasn't perfect. We can just use our best judgment to make this not exactly like the sketch, but slightly better. You'll notice that I have this flat top, because a real house when it come to a really sharp point like this. What I'm going to do is cut this off, cut the tip of this triangle off. To do that, I'm going to go over to my rectangle tool. Right now I have the polygon tool for my shape tool. I'm going to click and hold and go over to the rectangle tool. Now you'll see I have this little cross as my mouse cursor. I'm going to drag out a rectangle just like this. Now I want to cut out this rectangle from this triangle to make this flat top on the triangle. I'm going to select both shapes. I already have the rectangle selected, so I can just hold down shift and then select my triangle. Then I'm going to go over to my Pathfinder panel and I'm going to click the ''Minus Front'' button. The minus front is going to subtract whatever is on top, which is the rectangle because I drew it second, it's going to be on top, from whatever is on bottom, which is going to be my triangle. Let's just click that and there we go, it's cut that shape for us. Now if you weren't sure which button to click, you can always just click them all and hit ''Undo'' between to see what happens. I do that all the time. We have this, this is like the inside of our triangle, the front of the house. Now let's make this outer section. I'm just going to duplicate the same shape. I'm going to go Command C with this shape selected to copy it. Then Command Shift V to paste the same triangle in place. You can't really tell that anything is different, because I pasted it right on top of the other one. But if I go over into my layers and toggle this down, you can see that I do have two shapes in there. With this top shape selected, I'm going to hold down shift to make sure that I'm scaling up proportionally, and then just drag to make it a little bit bigger. The reason why I'm holding down Shift is that I want to make sure that I'm scaling this proportionally. Something like that looks pretty good, but you can see that now, this triangle is a little bit taller than what I had in my sketch. I think I like it the way I had in the sketch, so I'm going to do that trick with the rectangle again to cut off the top of this. I'll just go over to the Rectangle tool, draw out a rectangle, like that, and then I'm going to go back to my Selection tool by hitting V, hold down Shift to select this shape as well, and then click the "Minus Front" button in the Pathfinder panel. Even though I'm not coloring in anything right now, I want to make it easy for myself to color in things later, so as I build my sketch, I'm going to be mindful of that. Right now, we have this shape that is like this triangle like this and this triangle like this. I'm actually going to turn off my sketch for a second so that you can see this easier. I'm just going to go over into the sketch layer which is layer 1, I should rename this. If you double-click on your layer, you can rename it, and then I'm just going to turn off the eyeball to hide that. If I were to choose a fill color for this, like this obnoxious green, you can see that the whole shape is filled in, but I just want to fill in between these two shapes. I'm going to select this inside triangle, and I'm going to hit Command C to copy, Command Shift V to paste it in place, and then I'm going to select the outer triangle, and I'm going to use that Minus Front again to cut that out. Now, if I just take this shape that's selected and move it away, you can see that I have this shape which will be perfect for my roof, so I could fill it in like that. Let's just undo to bring that back into place. Then I could fill this inner triangle with the color that I want for the front of my house. Let's turn back on our sketch. Now, I'm going to make the door, so that's going to be pretty easy, just using the Rectangle tool. Let's make a triangle using the Polygon tool. Click and hold on the rectangle to bring up the Polygon tool, then you can just click to make sure that you have a three-sided shape, and that's way too big so we can just shrink it down, move it into place, and let's turn off the sketch to try to get this as parallel to the roof lines as possible. Maybe, I'll even drag it over to see if I can adjust it better. That looks pretty parallel, and then I'll just center this. That looks pretty good. What I could do to get this perfectly centered is use my Align tool. If I select the door, the triangle window, and the shape, that's the front of the cabin, if I select all three of those, holding Shift in between to select all three, then you'll see at the top panel that you'll have these Align tools. You can also find the Align tools is in the Align panel, but they should pop up for you at the top of the screen like this. Then I can use this horizontal align center to align them altogether, but you'll see that that's also offset all of these shapes a little bit and I don't want that to happen, so I'm going to undo that. I'm going to click again on this main shape for the front of the cabin, and you'll see that that's now highlighted even more in a thicker stroke. What that means is that that's my key object that I can center everything else to. Now, when I hit "Center", this main shape is going to stay in place, and it's going to center these objects within that shape. Now, I can click off and everything is centered and looking good. I'm going to turn back on my sketch. Now, let's make these windows here. I know that I already got this triangle to be really parallel with the roof lines, and I want these windows to be parallel with the roof lines as well. I'm just going to hold down Option while clicking and dragging on this triangle to drag out a triangle. Then what I'm going to do is make a rectangle, so I'm going to go over to my Rectangle tool and then draw a rectangle that's going to overlap with this triangle. Hopefully, you can see what I'm trying to do here, I'm trying to make this shape with the overlap of the rectangle and the triangle. I have that like this, and maybe I want the triangle to be moving this way a little. I'm holding down Shift to keep it horizontally aligned. I think this inside shape is looking pretty good, I need to make the rectangle a little longer. With both of these two shapes selected, I'm going to go over to my Pathfinder and click on the "Intersect" shapes. Now, I have that window shape. Maybe it will look better if I align this with the top of the door, so something like that. Now, let's duplicate that to bring it over here for this window. What I'm going to do is hold down Option and Shift to drag it across, but I need to flip this horizontally. The way that I like to do this is to hit O on the keyboard which is the Reflect tool. Also over here, it might be underneath your Rotate tool. So O on the keyboard, and then I'm just going to click and drag while holding down Shift to flip this over. I clicked on the left side of it, held down shift, and dragged to the right. It flipped that shape for me. I'm just going to nudge this over, something like that. If we turn off the sketch, you can see that we have our front of the house looking pretty good. Now, my stroke width on the windows is smaller than the rest of the strokes. This doesn't really matter that much but if you're picky like me and you want to make it the same, you can just select these and either increase the stroke over here, or you can hit the I key which is the eye and then sample something else that has a stroke that you want to apply to these other shapes. So just like that, I have everything having the same stroke. You'll notice that when I am dragging my shapes to resize them, because I have the scale strokes and effects on, it's going to scale the stroke proportionately. If I were to make this triangle bigger, you can see that the stroke also gets bigger, or when I make this smaller, the stroke also gets smaller. This is useful in most cases but sometimes, it's not. When you're blocking out an illustration with just lines, you might not want that to happen, so you can just turn this checkbox off. Our cabin is starting to come together. I know I'm throwing a ton of information at you if this is your first time using Illustrator, but hang in there, with practice, you will totally have the step-down second nature. 8. Line Art - Part 2: Let's turn on our sketch and keep working. So let's make this part of the roof, the rest of the roof. I want to make sure that this line is perfectly parallel to this line of the roof. What I'm going to do is duplicate this shape, holding down "Option" and dragging also holding down "Shift" and bringing that over into position. Then I'm going to hit the "C" key on my keyboard, and this brings up the scissors tool. I'm going to go and hover over one of the anchor points on this line. I'm going to do this anchor point right here, because I want to cut this line right here. I just want to save this rightmost part of this shape and delete the rest. I'll cut right here and also cut right here. Now just this segment of the line is selected, because this segment is separate. I switch back to my selection tool, selected this part of the line, and let's just delete that. Now, we have this line that's perfectly parallel to this other roof line, and we can work with this to make a complete shape for this roof. Let's duplicate this line one more time by holding down "Option", dragging, also holding down "Shift" to maintain its horizontal position. Let's snap that all the way over to this roof line. You'll see it says intersect when they collide. Actually they didn't go exactly together, so I'm just going to re-align them up. Here we go. Now with this line selected, I'm going to hit "P" on my keyboard. P as in pen. This is going to bring up the Pen tool. The Pen tool allows you to draw any kind of shape. What I want to do with the Pen tool is actually just connect these lines to form a complete closed shape. So I'm going to hover over the anchor point on this line, and you'll see when I hover over, instead of having that star next to the Pen tool, I have this slashed line when I'm over an anchor point. That's exactly what I want because that means that I'm adding on to this one. I'm connecting a line to this line, and you'll see that when I drag my Pen tool off, I have this red line that connects to the anchor point that I just clicked. Your line might not be red, it's whatever color is the selection color for your layer. Mine is red and you can see that over here in the layers panel as well. I'm going to just click again to connect to this line. So when I hover over this line, you'll see another different indicator next to the Pen tool, and this one is a square with two little lines off to the side. That means that you're connecting to an anchor point, and that's just what we want, so I'll click. Now you can see this whole shape is selected, because I've connected the lines together. Let's finish that off by doing the same thing down here. I'll hover over and I'll see that little slash. I'll click to add to this anchor point, and then go over to this anchor point, and now I should see this little circle. That means that I'm going to make a closed shape, which is exactly what I want, so I'll click. Now I've made a closed shape. If I were to add a fill color to this, like this blue, you can see that it fills in like a complete shape. I'm going to undo that for now. Let's work on the chimney now. I'm going to go over to my rectangle tool, and then just draw out over my sketch where the chimney should be. Let's zoom in. I'm going to draw another rectangle for this other side of the chimney, and I'm going to make sure that these lines collide here. Now I'm going to go into my direct selection tool. We haven't used this tool yet. It's also A on the keyboard. The direct selection tool, what this does is allows you to just adjust the position of one of your anchor points within your shape. You can see that I just clicked on the bottom anchor point of this shape. That one is filled in with red, whereas these other ones are filled in with white. That means that this anchor point is selected, and I can drag this one without affecting the others. I'm going to undo that, and I'm just going to bring this one up to about here. I'm going to hold down "Shift" to make sure that I keep this aligned vertically. I want this to be parallel with the roof line, so maybe bring it like that. I think maybe a little bit more. You can also, when you have an anchor point selected, you can use your arrow keys on your keyboard to adjust. That looks pretty good, and you'll notice that this point is sticking out like this on the stroke. If I go into the Stroke panel, I can just change the corner to a rounded corner, and that fixes that. So that's looking good for this part of the chimney. Now I can see the line of the roof through the chimney. So let's just add a white fill to both of these shapes. I'm selecting both of these shapes. Another way to select both shapes would be to click and drag over them, and you get this rectangle marquee, and that'll select two things at once or multiple things. Then I'm just going to add a white fill. With the Fill box on top of the stroke, I'm just going to go over and click "White". Now that's just made it so that my chimney has a white fill, so that I don't see the line of the roof behind it. In general, I don't want to be erasing things because if I was animating something and it moved, I don't want to have nothingness, or some weird thing that you don't want to see behind that shape. Now, obviously the chimney is not going to be something that moves, but it's just a general rule to keep all the parts there. So I wouldn't want to just erase part of the roof because the chimney is covering it. I just want to cover it up with the shape. Let's make the top of the chimney, and I'm going to put different colors for the top. So I'll just make two boxes for this section, even though in my sketch it's just one box. I'll use the rectangle tool. The shortcut is M and make sure that's aligned. I'll duplicate this shape and move it over and extend it. This might be a little long. That looks pretty good. The chimney is done. Let's make this second little window on the side of the house. I'm going to use this roof shape that I've already created to save some time when making this window. You'll probably guess, what I'm going to do is to call down "Option" and "Shift" and drag this over. Now I can just scale it down and I'm going to hold down "Shift" to scale it proportionally. I think I'm going to want my window to be a little bit bigger than what I originally had in the sketch. May be this is pretty good. Zoom in on that. Now, this roof is really thin. I want it to be a little bit closer to the thickness of the main roof. What I'm going to do is go to my direct selection tool or A on the keyboard and just select the inner part of this shape. It's going to be this anchor point, and I want to select the rest of these anchor points, so I'm going to hold down "Shift" select multiple anchor points. I've selected the four inner anchor points. Then I'm going to go to the scale tool, which is S on the keyboard, also this tool right here. I'm going to click and drag towards the center of my shape. So I'm going to start in the upper left and then move down into the right. You can see how that's dragging my shape. But it's just dragging the inner part of the shape because I had just those anchor points selected. That's a way that you can scale just part of your shape without scaling the whole shape. You can see that that has made this roof about as thick as this roof. But these anchor points are obviously not in the right place anymore. Let's just drag these ones down. I'm going to just select them one at a time and just drag them down. You'll see that next to my mouse, next to my cursor, it's saying on, and at the top of that line, it saying line extension. That means that I'm keeping the same angle as I'm dragging. Then I'll just make sure that I see that intersect, to want to intersects with this bottom plane, the horizontal plane, and that's looking good. Then do the same thing over here. That looks good. That's the roof of this window. Now, let's make this shape. You can probably guess what I'm going to do is duplicate this shape to make a perfectly parallel line. I'm going to cut this up. We'll hit "C" on the keyboard for the scissors, cut here and cut here. Then we can delete this part of the shape. You might have to hit "Delete" twice, sometimes when you have a shape like that and you delete. It only deletes part of it the first time, so you just hit "Delete" twice, and now I have this line here. Let's duplicate this line and snap it over to this side of the roof. Now let's connect these two lines to make a shape that we could fill in. I'm going to hit "P" on the keyboard to bring up the Pen tool, hover over this anchor point until I see that little slash. Click "Hover over" until I see that other little icon. Click and that's joined to those. Let's do the same thing. Hover over that anchor point and wait until I see the circle. Sometimes when you have lots of things on top of each other, you might not see that circle. I'm just going to put the point here, and then I'm going to hit "Enter" to finish off my shape. Now obviously that's not what I was going for. So let me show you how to fix this. I'm going to select the shape and put it into isolation mode. To do that, I'm just going to double-click on the shape. You can see that everything else has been grayed out, and I have this bar at the top. That means that I'm just selecting this shape and nothing else. I can't even touch anything else when I'm in this mode. Now it's going to be easier to connect these two lines. I'm going to hit "P" on the keyboard to bring up the Pen tool again. Then just hover over this anchor point, connect to that anchor point, and then you'll see the circle to connect to that anchor point. Now, I can just delete this point. With the Pen tool, you actually have a few different other options, other tools that you can use. There's this delete anchor point tool, which is what I want. So I'm going to select that one. It's also minus on the keyboard, makes sense, because it's going to delete this anchor point. With this minus anchor point tool, I'm just going to click this anchor point that I don't want to delete it. There we go. We had to do a little work around, but that's a good thing to know. Let's click this bar at the top to exit isolation mode and now you can see that everything is back to normal. Let's zoom out a little bit. This shape of the window is colliding with the roof. I knew that I drew it too far to the left when I did my sketch, so let's fix that now. I'll just select both of these shapes and just move them over, holding "Shift" of course to keep them aligned. Let's just turn off the sketch for a second. We can reuse this triangle window on the front of the house for this side window. So let's just hold down option while dragging, and let's shrink this down a little bit holding "Shift". That looks pretty good. I'm wondering maybe I don't want this window to be at ground level because I think it looks weird there. So let's try moving up. I'm going to click and drag over all of these shapes to select them all. Maybe I'll move it so it's aligned with this window. Maybe something like that. Maybe a little this way. I think that looks better. I have this floating window, it needs like a face. Let's just select this window Command C to copy, Command Shift V to paste in place, and then let's scale it up. I'm holding down "Option" to scale it from all sides proportionately. It doesn't actually matter if I make this the perfect size because I can have the roof covering it up. I made it just this slightly bigger than it needed to be. But it is sticking out at the bottom and that doesn't look good, so let's just drag it up and make it like that. Then this roof shape, so that's the one that looks like that. Let's put that on top so we can use it to cover up this shape. First, let's add a fill to it. Let's just make it white. That didn't look like it did anything because this shape is on bottom of this triangle. What we need to do to bring this one to the top, you see the inner layers panel, just take that layer, you can see that it's the one selected because it has this little box next to it. You can bring that all the way up to the top, or another way to do that would be to do Command or Control Shift and the right bracket to bring to front. All right, so that is looking good now. If you've gotten to this point, congrats. I know that was a lot, but now you have a cabin. Now don't forget to save your work by just hitting "Command or Control S". 9. Line Art - Part 3: I'm noticing that my cabin is looking a little bit wide. I think it will look better if it was a little bit more of a steep angle in the roof. What I can actually do is just select all of my cabin, and just hold down option, and shrink it in. I think that's already looking better. Sometimes it takes walking away from what you're working on and coming back to notice what's wrong with it, and then you can fix it. So it's always good to take breaks. I also think that this window could be a little bit smaller. When I selected that, I also ended up selecting the roof. I'm just going to hold down Shift, and select the roof again to unselect it, and then hold down Shift to make this window a bit smaller. Maybe nudge it to the right. That looks better. Let's make a little base for our cabin. That'll just be a simple rectangle. Let's duplicate this, and elongate it to make a step to that again, and now let's work on some hills. Let me turn back on my sketch layer, and you can see that things are starting to get off with the sketch because I've I started to make things look a little bit better in the illustration, and that's totally fine to do that. We don't have to stick to the sketch, and in fact in the case of my sketch, I definitely wanted to deviate from the sketch a bit because it wasn't the greatest sketch. Now, let's work on some hills. To do this, we're going to use the pen tool, so make sure you're on your regular pen tool, P on the keyboard, and we're going to make some curves with the pen tool. Using the pen tool to make curves can be tricky and it has a little bit of a learning curve to it, no pun intended. But let me show you how it works. I want to click to make an anchor point, and once I click, I can drag, and you'll see that I have these little handles attached to my cursor. These handles are going to be tangent to the path that you're making. That'll make more sense when I have another point. I'm going to let go of that point, and then click again over here, and then drag again. You'll see that these handles are changing the shape of that curve, the line that connects my two anchor points now. I'm going to adjust this so that it's a nice curve lining up with my sketch, and then we'll make another point. You can see already where the curve is going to be. Then as I dragged out, I'm adjusting that curve, and let's do one more point here. That looks pretty good, and I just went back to my selection tool by hitting "V", and I have a pretty nice curve there. If wanted to, if you didn't get it perfect the first time which happens to me a lot, is that you can go back in the direct selection tool, so A on the keyboard, and then you can adjust your anchor points, and the handles on anchor points. So you can get your curve exactly how you want it. I'm going to leave mine like that, and then create one more over here. Now this curve is not looking like those nice elegant curves from my reference image, so let me just go take a look at the reference, and see where I'm going wrong. I just opened up my Mood Board here, and this is that curved line that I really liked. I'm just going to go in, and just use the pen tool to trace this out. So maybe it's something like this. I don't want to fill in this, so I'll just hit the "None Fill" button. We can even change this to a color that's easier to see on this. That's pretty close. I'm just going to copy this by hitting "Command C", and then bring that back into my illustration by hitting "Command V", and we're going to need to scale this up. We can just make it black like everything else. I'm just going to use the eyedropper to sample in that, how to write background, which is actually what I want to cover up these steps. We can delete my old line too. That looks pretty good. I did just copy that, I just traced it from this reference image, but I'm not going to trace anything else from this reference image. I might actually probably will change this slightly later. I've only copied one little piece of that, and I don't think anyone is going to look at this and be like, "Oh my gosh, you copied that line from that other illustration." No one's going to know, and it's not like I stole multiple things or even that this artist would probably recognize it. So you have to be very careful when you do stuff like this. But in this case, I hope you can understand why I think this is okay, and I probably will change this later. I'm not going to end up with linear either, I'm not going to do this linear style. It's going to be looking even different than what I copied later. Let's just leave it for now, and let's work on the mountains. I'm going to just use my pen tool again. In my sketch, I've drawn these out very pointy, but I think I want them to actually have a little bit more curve. I'm going to do this in a slightly different way than I did the hills because they don't need as much curve as the hill. So I'm still going to be using the pen tool. I'm going to click to make a point, click to make another point, and I'm not dragging after I click to make an anchor point, I'm just making straight lines. Then I'm going to hit "Enter" to end that line. For now let's just go back to the selection tool, and get rid of that fill color. I'll do the same thing over here for this mountain. Now, something I like to do a lot to add a little bit of curve, is just to select the line. Then hit "A" on the keyboard to go to the direct selection tool, and you'll see that in all of the corners I have these little circles. These are the round corners tool. I can just round the corners by dragging this little circle. You can see that I have this nice curve now. Now it's a totally different style of curve than this, but it is a super-fast way to make this style of curve, and I'll do the same thing with this mountain. Let's hide the sketch for just a second. I think that's looking pretty good. Next, let's work on the trees. These trees in my sketch, I just placed them here to figure out where I wanted the trees, but the actual trees don't look phenomenal. So I'm just going to turn off the sketch to make my tree. I'm just going to go over to a blank area in my art board to start working on this. I'm going to go into my polygon tool, and click once to bring up the options, and just choose a three-sided polygon to make a triangle. Let's scale this. Maybe I want my tree to be something like that, with multiple segments of these triangles. I think it would be nice to have a little bit of a curve on my triangle. I'll just go to the direct selection tool and just drag out these little corner circles, something like that. Let's duplicate this by clicking, dragging with the option key held down. Then I'm going to just scale it up, holding down shift. Let's do that again, and let's do that one more time. I like to have things in odd numbers whenever possible because it just looks more balanced. Your eyes automatically will pair things if you have them in even numbers, like two or four. So I think an odd number will look nice. I'm just going to select all of my triangles, give them a white fill, and then let's make the bottom triangle in the back by doing Shift Command and the left bracket key. Then both of these, let's move back. All three of these will move back, and then all four of these will move back. That just rearranged the order so it looks a little bit more like a tree. Also, if you forgot to hold down shift when you were duplicating one of your triangles and they're not aligned, you can just select them all and use the align tool here. If you notice that some of your spacing isn't right, you can always go and adjust. I think I'm pretty happy with that tree. Let's just select the whole thing, and then I'm going to hit ''Command G"' to group them together. You can see in my layers panel now that I have this group that is my whole tree. Now I can move this tree all at once or I can scale it all at once too. Let's fit this into my scene, and we'll bring this hill above it. It's okay that we're seeing this little line at the bottom of the tree there, that's because this hill is not a complete shape. It's fine. We can fix it later. Let's duplicate this tree, drag it over here, and we'll do another one behind the house, make that one a little bit bigger, and send it to the back with Shift Command and left bracket. Now we also need to send the mountain behind that, so we'll do that again. Let's also make this have a fill color on the roof so that the tree can be hidden behind that. This is all the trees I had in my sketch, but now that I look at this, I think that it needs a little bit more. Let's duplicate this tree again. Maybe we'll make it have a smaller one right next to it. Maybe we can bring these a little bit more behind this hill. Maybe we want a tree in the very front of the house. Maybe it's like right there. Let's bring that to the front and let's make it a little taller. It's blocking this back tree, so let's move that over. Let's have a couple of trees over on this side of the house because right now our composition is a little bit off balance. There's a lot going on over here and not so much going on over here. Let's balance that out to have a little bit more over here. I think this is looking pretty good. Adding these trees over here definitely helped to balance out our composition. Maybe we even want to make this tree a little bit bigger, something like that. This tree could be a little smaller. When I resize that tree, I have this line that connects the roof to the trees. I'm just going to either move up or down. I think up works. I don't want to have any lines that are connecting that I don't want to connect, unintentional connecting lines. Those are called tangents and, generally, you just want to avoid those. I also noticing that I lost part of the roof on this window, so let's just find it. I think it's this. Let's bring it above the roof layer. I also don't really like the position of this mountain, it's odd where it's touching this tree almost right here. This mountain, I don't like how the peak of it is behind this tree, so I'm just going to do a little work to rearrange these mountains and make them look a little bit better. If you want to undo a rounded corner, you can select your shape with the direct selection tool and then just click and drag your round corner tool the other way to unround the corner. I think this tree looks a little weird just sitting like this, so I'm going to give it a trunk. I'll just use a rectangle for that and make sure that it's aligned center. I'm going to select the tree, Command Shift G to ungroup it, then I'm going to hold down shift and select the trunk to add to the selection, then Command G to group the entire tree. That just made the whole tree a group again. I'm going to move this up a little bit, maybe something like that. Let's give this rectangle a fill color. I'm just going to select the group, double-click on the rectangle to just select the rectangle, and then give that a fill. Let's move this hill a little bit to hide this edge of the porch, that'll just look a little bit cleaner, something like that. I'm going to adjust this curve. I think it needs to be extended over here. That curve that I copied, I'm already changing it so it's no longer really copied as much. I think that looks pretty good. Maybe it needs to elongate. I think it would be nice if this little hill was blocking part of the portrait here. I'm just going to even take the whole thing and move it. Let's see what that looks like. Yeah, maybe something like that. Maybe we need to shrink this a little. I'm liking how this hill ends at the bottom of the steps. Maybe I'll make that intentionally connect, like that. It's hard to see what this area actually looks like because this fill doesn't really work with this shape that's not a closed shape. I'm just going to Command C to copy, Command Shift V to paste the shape in the same place, and then I'm going to use the pen tool to add onto the shape, just to close off the shape. With this shape that I've used to close off the shape, I don't want the stroke color because I don't want to show this box. That would be weird. Then I'll just move it down for a second, make this shape on top, the one that has the stroke, and then move that back into place. There we go. That's looking better. On the one with the stroke, that's going to be this one, we can just take off that fill color. That's a more accurate representation of what this will look like. I know that I've already given you so much information in this class, and I hope that it's not too overwhelming. But maybe think of it this way, if you didn't have a class like this, it would be much slower to make progress in Illustrator just tinkering on your own. Just remember that it's going to take a lot of practice and time to master these skills. But this class is going to hopefully accelerate your learning and your progress in Illustrator, and also later in After Effects. So just hang in there and feel good about your progress so far. 10. Line Art - Part 4: Our scene is really coming together, so let's check out our sketch to see if we are missing anything. Actually, I'm going to turn off the artwork layer and just look at the sketch. One thing that I liked a lot the sketch was that I saw the inside of the underside of the roof for a year, and I haven't done that yet in my line art. I'm going to turn that back on, turn off the sketch, and just use this shape of the roof to make that little under the roof part right here. I'll just duplicate this. Let's just bring it to the front first. So "Shift Command" and right bracket. Then let's use the Reflect tool or O on the keyboard to flip this. So I'm just going to hold down Shift and drag across from left to right to flip this. Let's take off the fill so we can see what we're doing. Let's just move this line so that the left part of the line is right where we want it to be. I'm going to select both of the anchor points on the right side of the shape using the direct selection tool and I'll select the first one and then hold down Shift and select the second one. With these two points selected, I'm just going to hold down Shift while dragging to the left to shrink this shape down. Maybe something like that. I'm going to bring the roof shape on top of this other shape that I just created, and you can still see it there, so we need to do a little bit of rearranging with our layers. Now, these windows and the door look a little bit off, so we're just going to select them all, nudge them over. Maybe I want to shrink down these windows a little bit. The windows were all aligned right here, so I'm just selecting anchor points to adjust. I want the windows to be the same size, so I'll just delete this one and re-duplicate and flip this one. That's looking pretty good. Technically, we need this inside of the roof on this window too. You can do that in a similar way, copying this portion of the roof. We only have a few more details left before we can start adding color to our illustration. Let's add some smoke coming out of the chimney. Now, this smoke that we create in Illustrator, we're actually going to end up redoing in After Effects when we animate this. This is just to get the style of smoke that we want to use. I'm just going to use the Pen tool and draw a nice curve coming out of the chimney. Now, one trick that I like to do if curves are hard to draw for you with the Pen tool, is you can just use straight lines. Instead of clicking and dragging, you just click to make points, and then pick the other side. Let's close off the shape. That was a little bit off-center, so I'm just going to nudge it to the right. Now, what we can do is select all the corners that we would like to be rounded, so I'm just clicking the anchor point and then selecting the round corners, circle. I'm going to round this like that. That gives it not perfect, but it gives it a nice rounded look. So if I decided that, now that's actually not what I want, I could always unround these corners and try again. Now, when you've rounded these corners as much as the smallest corner can round, then it's just going to stop. But some of these corners we get actually rounded more to make it have an even different look. So that's a good trick to know if the Pen tool is a little bit challenging, but I do recommend practicing with the Pen tool because it can come in really handy in a lot of cases. Let's add some clouds to our scene. I'm just going to use the Circle tool or the Ellipse tool, which is also L on the keyboard to create some circles, and then I'll just duplicate this, maybe resize them. You can see where I'm going with this to make clouds. I really only want the tops of the shapes, something like that. What I'm going to do is just select all three of these and go down to my Pathfinder panel and just merge them altogether or unite them. Then I'm going to cut them in half. I'll just use a rectangle. I'm on the keyboard, and I'm going to make a shape like that. Then I want the intersection of these two shapes, so I'll select them both and choose the Intersect button. You can repeat that process with slightly different shapes to create more clouds. I'm liking the way that my scene is looking. I'm just going to go through one more time and make sure that I don't have any tangent lines or how many things that I want to fix. Right off, I'm noticing that I forgot to add round corners to my mountains after I fix them up a little bit, so I'll just add those really quick. I'm also going to check for any tangent lines. Remember, those are lines that connect even though you didn't really intend for them to connect. Right here, this looks a little bit odd how these lines will intersect right here. Maybe I'll just bring this up a little bit, that looks better. I'm having these two trees, this line is connecting. Maybe something like that. I can change this up a little more when I'm doing color, but for now, let's just get this to be pretty good. All right. Let's move on to color blocking in the next video. 11. Set Up Colors: Now that we're finished with our line art illustration, it's time to go in and add some color. What I'm going do first is just collapse this layer 2 and rename this line art by just double-clicking and then typing. First I'm going to just select my entire line art layer by hitting this little area right here to select everything on this layer. I want to center this, but not everything is grouped, so if I were just to center it right now, well, you'll see what happens. It just centers everything and ruins my whole illustration. Let's undo that. What we want to do to center a layer that is not grouped altogether and has multiple pieces, what we're going to do is go up to Transform and then type in for the x-value, half of the size of our art board. That's going to be 540. For the y-value, same thing, half of the art board, so also 540. That centers that up, but this smoke is tall and actually it might not be that tall in my final illustration, it just looks low down here. I'm just going to select everything, clicking and dragging is another way to select, and then I'll just move this up. It looks about right. Maybe something like that. Now let's go over into our layers panel and just select the line art. Make sure that's blue highlighted, and then go up to this hamburger menu and go to Duplicate line art. That's just going to make a line art copy, and we can just lock our original line art. In case we want to go back to it, we have that there, and then we'll just work with this layer to add color. Now we need to start thinking about the actual colors that we want to use. A lot of times I'll try to pick a color palette and then try it out and change things if I don't like how it looks. But choosing your color palette is a big topic that deserves a class of its own, so I'm not going to get too deep into it here. But there are a lot of resources where you can go for color inspiration. You could look on Pinterest, or you could go to Adobe Color. You can play around with these different options to create different color palettes. If you have one color that you like, you can try to make a color palette off of that using these different options here. You can also explore popular colors and things that Adobe or other designers have put together. You can also see what's trending in different areas like fashion, graphic design or illustration. Or you can always go to your moodboard or your Pinterest or inspiration source for colors that you like within actual illustrations. Now, just like with getting inspiration from illustrations on the actual illustration part, you need to be careful when you get inspiration from illustrations for the color palette too. You don't want to just copy the entire color palette from one of these illustrations. If you just say like, oh, I really, really like this, I don't know this green color in this illustration, you could use that color and then try to make a color palette off of that. But if you go and copy all of these colors, that gets a little bit too close to copying. Just be careful of that. Like I said, choosing a color palette deserves a class of its own. For this project, I picked out this dark purple color from another illustration that I already made, and then I based these other colors on that purple color. One way to do this is to go into your color guide panel, and then once you have the color selected, it'll give you shades and tints of that color. Let's take a look at the green. You can see that it'll give me shades and tints, and you can also play around with other ways to combine colors here. That can be a useful tool. I also will sometimes just go in and go to my color picker and then just choose a different color from here. If I was going for a lighter color of this, maybe I would just move a little bit this direction, change the saturation a little bit and make it a little bit lighter. Maybe something like that. But I'm actually going to just stick with what I have here. You'll notice that I chose dark, cool colors because I want this to have a wintery feel, and then I want the trees to be green just because I want it to be a little bit realistic. Obviously, you could choose something other than green if you wanted to go for a more stylized look, but I think I'll stick with green for my trees. Then I chose a nice warm yellow color that balances out all of these other cool colors. Because I think that'll be fun to do for the windows to make it look like, maybe this will be the sky color and then maybe the windows will be this yellow. That way it looks like somebody's home, and it's night, and it's cozy, and wintery. Like this example here with all of the cool colors and the bright yellow windows. If you want to add your colors to your swatches panel so it's easy to use them, you can just select all of your colors if you have them laid out like I do. You can just hit this new color group button right here, and then you can name your swatches and make sure that you have selected artwork filled in and then convert process to global checked. This way, if you decide that you want to change a color after you've already colored in your illustration, a global color, once it's changed in the swatches panel will change every instance of that color within your artwork. That makes it nice if you aren't quite sure about your color palette now, and you think that you might want to change it later. When you make that color group, you'll see it down here and you'll see the little white triangle in the corner and that just means that it's a global color. I like this limited color palette that I've created and I'm going to try to stick with this. But if I ended up needing more colors, I could always try out using some shades and tints from this panel up here. If you didn't have your colors in little squares like I did, you can always just go to your color picker and just double-click on the color picker and then pick a color that you want. You can adjust the slider, you can type in hex values or RGB values here, and go in, find the color you want. When you have that color, just hit "Okay." Then you can go over to the new swatch button. It's going to bring up this little menu, make sure that you have global checked and hit "Okay." You can see that that's made a new color and it's added it right here. If you wanted to bring it into the group, you could just drag and drop. I actually don't want that color, so I'm just going to hit the trash can, do delete it. That's how you can create swatches from your color palette. Now one thing to note here is that your swatches won't be visible anywhere in After Effects, but we probably won't need them there. But if you want to have your colors available in After Effects, what you can do is actually create a library, a CC library, for all of your colors. If you want to save your colors in a library instead of in the swatches, you can use these buttons down here in the Library panel to create color swatches. Then I don't need these anymore so I can just delete them. 12. Color Blocking: Let's start coloring our work. The roof I know is going to be this darkest color, so I'll color that in. Then I need to make sure that I get rid of the stroke color, so I'll just press the None button with the stroke square on top to get rid of the stroke. Then I'm just going to try to place the colors so that I can see everything because the colors next to each other are not the same. Maybe the front of the cabin will be this color. Let's make the windows yellow. If you have something that's like a stroke but you actually wanted it to be the fill, you can just hit this Swap button. I'm just going to go through and color the things that are a little bit more obvious and easy to color. You may notice that you need to rearrange the ordering of your layers when you start coloring things. If I color that I just covered up the window, so I'm going to undo that. Click on the window make sure it's in the front, and make sure that it is the right color. Then I can color the thing behind it. You can also select multiple things at once, and you can use the Eyedropper Tool to sample the color to something else, which may be a faster way to get things colored the way you want them. Notice that sometimes things and right next to each other are the same color, and I'm losing detail. I'm going to leave that for now. Like on this chimney and the roof here. I know that I'm going to need to fix that later. I might think about adding some snow to the roof, that was something that I really liked in some of my reference. That's something to keep in mind that if I add that snow color then these things will pop out more, but I'm going to leave those for now. You may notice that you can see some of these black lines from the line out layer below our colors. I'm just going to turn off that duplicated layer that we have just in case we need to come back to it. I need to start thinking about the background color and how these white areas of the snow, and the hills, and the clouds are going to pop out. I'm thinking I might use a background color of off white. Let me just create a new layer. I'm going to name this Background or just BG, and move that layer below my line art copy which is the color. So I can rename this. Then on my background layer with that selected, I'm just going to draw out a rectangle and fill the whole art board. Let's color that in this off white color. Let's just lock that layer so that we don't accidentally move it. If we add color to the clouds and the smoke; if we make them white, now you can actually see them because our background is off white. I like the way that that looks, but I need to do something about these hills. Because they don't have a defined bottom; I didn't draw out the end of the hill because that would just be weird, I need to find some way for these hills to pop out. But they are going to be snow colored, so they're going to be white. Let's just take off the stroke to start. Remember this one, I had this extra stroke line because I was still working in line up, but now I can just delete that. This is not looking great. Let's see what we can do about this. Maybe if I just have a highlight on my hill, I could have the hill be the same color as the background and then my highlight would just reveal that there is a hill there. To create that highlight, I'm just going to take this hill shape and hold down Option to duplicate it, and then drag down a duplicate. Then I'll color this one same color as the background. You can see what I mean by highlight, but that's not quite the look I was going for. I can just adjust these points using the Direct Selection Tool. Something like that, maybe something like that, maybe even bring that one up. Now my hill has disappeared, yet you can still tell that it's a hill because you see this little white highlight of snow on the top of the hill. Also because this one has a dark color behind it, you can still see the rest of this as a hill. That's the one solution of how I can deal with the edge of my illustration and how it works with the background color. Let's do the same thing with this hill over here. First, let's make this a complete shape by just connecting it with the Pen Tool, and then I'm going to drag a duplicate out and bring it down. Let's color this duplicate the same color as the background color, and then just drag up the points to make a shape like I did on the other hill. Something like that looks pretty good. Now, you can still see that there's hills because of things in the background and because of the white highlight. I'm going to do the same thing with these mountains. The mountains are going to be cut off by the trees on this side, so I actually think I want to move this tree over a bit to give the mountains a little bit of more room. I could even make these ones a little bit bigger. First I'm going to need to make these complete shapes, so I'll use the Pen Tool to do that. It doesn't really matter what the edge of the shapes look like on the bottom because I'm going to be blending them in with color. If I were to color these mountains white, they would stand out from the background. Let's move this to the back, but then I have a problem with this area here. Maybe I need a sky color. What if I did a half circle like a dome and then added a sky color? To do this, I'm going to use the Ellipse Tool, which is L on the keyboard. I'm going to hold down Shift to draw out a perfect circle and align it between those two trees: the leftmost and rightmost tree, and I'm going to color this in the darkest color. Let's try making this night. Let's move this circle to the back of our artwork, so Shift+Command and left bracket. I think I want to cut off the circle and just change the scale a little bit. I'm just going to take this point at the bottom and with the Direct Selection Tool, I'm going to just move it up about there. We still need to extend these mountains down or do something with this area, so I'm just going to take these anchor points with the Direct Selection Tool and move them down. So this whole area is white. Let's do the same thing with this mountain. First, we need to make it a complete shape and color it white. That's looking pretty good, but it blends in with this highlight on the snow. Let's try making these mountains the off white color. I think the off white mountains are working, but maybe I can add a little bit more depth by adding a little white shape between these two mountains to separate them. I'm just going to use my Pen Tool to draw a shape like this, and then I can use the Direct Selection Tool to adjust this shape. Maybe something like that. It acts like a highlight on this mountain and also gives these two mountains a little bit of separation. I'm also noticing that this hill just abruptly ends, there's a little cliff in the middle of the front yard which is not good. Let's just extend this shape. I'm just going to hit the Plus key to go to the Pen Tool that adds an anchor point, and I'm just going to click anywhere on this vertical line here, that's part of this hill shape. Now that I've added that anchor point, I'm just going to go to the Direct Selection Tool and pull it out over here. I just want to make a flat line, I'll move this as well. Something like that. That looks pretty good. The next thing that I'm noticing is that our roof is blending in with the sky. Maybe if I add some snow to the roof, it'll make it feel more wintery and more accurate because everything else has snow on the ground. The roof would probably have snow too, and then that way we'll have some separation between the chimney and the roof, and the sky and the roof. Let's go ahead and do that. I'm just going to draw a shape with my Pen Tool. I already have a white fill here, so I'm good to go. I'm just going to start a little bit above the house, come down, maybe trace around this roof. I can't go behind the house with this shape, so I'm just going to go up here and go over and complete that shape. This is going to be the snow for the front half of the roof, and maybe I want this anchor point to be aligned with this one because that would make sense. I can just select those two points and use my Align Tools to make them vertically aligned. There we go. I'll adjust this point, so maybe it's like the snow is drooping down and it's about to drip off the roof here. I'll adjust this a bit because the snow would be parallel to the direction of the roof, so something like that or even more. Then I cut around the corners of this snow, so I run around these corners and this corner. These corners could even be a little bit more rounded. Something like that makes it look like the snow is dripping off the roof. Then let's make the snow for behind this window, so I'll just make another shape. You got to be careful when you're making shapes next to each other because if you're using your Pen Tool and you see this little minus icon next to your Pen Tool, that's going to delete this anchor point. Or if you're on the path, you might add an anchor point. I'm just going to start my line slightly offset and then go all the way to the back of the house. We have some trees that are interfering, put something like that. We can just connect this and then make our complete shape. We have an extra anchor point that we can delete if you want to. Now, we need to make sure that this window is above this piece of the snow. Since we are starting to rearrange the layer order of things, we might as well just start breaking out our layers into layers in our Layers panel so that it's ready to animate, because we're going to have to do that anyways. Let me just create a new layer, and I'm going to select all of the pieces of this window. With those selected, I'm going to go over to this little square here on my layer, and I'm just going to drag that up. That's going to take all of the selected layers from that layer and drag it into the new layer. You can see that these are all now on their own layer. This piece of the snow actually needs to be on top of that, so let's make a new layer for that snow. Do the same thing, drag the little square up into its own layer, bring that layer above the window layer. You should always label your layers, so let's name this window and let's name this snow. Because I have two pieces that are snow on the roof, I'm just going to add that little descriptor at the end so I know which one I'm talking about. Let's round the corners on this piece of snow. We have some layer issues here because of this tree. So let's just bring that tree onto its own layer, and always label your layers. Then let's drag this tree to the very top because that's in the front of our scene. With that, it looks like we have everything in our scene colored the way that we want it. In the next video, we'll add some more details and finalize our illustration. 13. Separate Illustration into Layers: Before we go any further, let's just do a few necessary housekeeping things. We need to separate out our artwork into different layers so that we can animate it. Throughout this process, I've been thinking about the things that I can animate in the back of my head. I know for one I'm going to animate the smoke and I already told you that I'm going to have to recreate the smoke in After Effects in order to animate it. But I also know that I want to animate the clouds, so those are going to definitely need to be on their own layer. I could even maybe change the color of the windows, maybe the lights come on, or maybe I can even animate the color of the sky and add a moon and a sun. Maybe I could even change it from day to night or vice versa, or maybe I can even make a cycle. I'm going to have to separate all these things out into their own layers. Some things I can keep together like all the mountains can be together and stuff like that. Let's do that first. I've already started a little bit by separating some things out. But Let's keep going with that. To separate things into layers, just as a reminder, you're going to select the thing that you want to separate. Click the "New layer" button down here. Then with that layer selected, you can see which layer it's already on with the little highlighted box here, and you can just click that box and drag it into the new layer. By doing that, you may have changed the layer order, but that's okay because we're going to go through and fix everything. Always make sure that you're naming your layers. I'm just going to name this tree 1, tree 2, tree 3, tree 4. This will be the front tree and then tree 5 and tree 6. I'm going to separate out all of my trees and name them. I've got all of my tree separated out and labeled. Now I want to bring the hills in front of those trees and bring those onto their own layer. All of the hills can go on the same layer because I'm not going to animate the hills because that doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Now the hills look good, let's bring the sky layer into its own layer. Bring that to the bottom of everything. I'm also just going to lock that because I might accidentally move it. Let's separate the clouds. I might actually make the clouds animate a little bit. I'm going to separate each cloud into its own layer because maybe some of the clouds are further away than others, so they might move at a different speed. Like maybe this one is further away because it's smaller, so it move a little bit slower than this one that's more close to us. Let's also separate the smoke out into its own layer. Now let's separate out the mountains and these can go together on one layer. Let's click on our main color blocking layer where everything originated and see what's still left. It looks like just the cabin is left on this layer. I can maybe move this above these trees. Let me name this cabin. Now let's separate out the windows of the cabin because if I want to change the color of them until I have the lights go on or become day to night or something, it'll be easier to animate those. I can actually just keep them all on the same layer because they're all going to always be the same color. I have two boxes here, and I'll just drag both of these into a new layer. Hopefully you're remembering to save your work periodically. Let's keep going. I notice that my chimney got covered up by the snow. Let's bring that forward above the snow. In order to do that, we're going to have to bring it onto its own layer, even though it's not going to be something that's animated. I'll just create a new layer for it and bring it above the snow on the roof. That should be all of the layers that we need at least so far. 14. Add Final Details to Illustration: Let's just do a double-check to make sure that we like what we're doing. Sometimes it helps me to just zoom out and look at something really small, and maybe I'll see some issue that it wasn't seen before. Or sometimes it helps to squint at it. I'm noticing that the smoke is pretty prominent, so I think that maybe if I just mask it out with the sky so that we don't see this segment up here. I think that'll help, but I can do that later in After Effects. I also think that maybe if I lower the opacity, maybe 50 percent. I think that looks better. Let's go in and add some details to really polish this illustration. First I'm going to add a moon, to make a moon, I'll just go and make a new layer, and then I'm going to use the Ellipse Tool or L on the keyboard and hold down Shift to draw out a perfect circle. I know I want this to be yellow, and then I'm going to take this circle, duplicate it, and then just drag it up and to the right, maybe something like that. Then I'm going to select both of my circles and use the Minus Front in the Pathfinder Panel to make that moon shape. I think just for a stylized approach, I'm going to round these corners just a tiny bit. Something like that looks good, maybe we make it a tiny bit smaller. Before we do anything else, let's just label our layer, and the moon can go to the very back right above the sky. Let's also add a sun. I'm just going to make another circle with the Ellipse Tool. Let's see if we can come up with something a little bit more interesting than just a circle for the sun. I'm thinking maybe if I make another circle that's a little bit bigger and just make this one a stroke, something like that. It's a little bit more interesting. Let's do that again, and maybe make this one a dashed line by just checking this box, and I'll make the edges of this line have rounded caps. Something like that looks more interesting as a sun. Now I'm just going to select all of those layers and just make sure that it's in its own layer. That's labeled, of course. Right now that doesn't really make sense because I have this scene set up as the night scene. In After Effects, I'm going to try to animate a day to night transition. For now we can actually just hide the sun if that bothers you to have a sun and moon at the same time in your scene that looks like it's night. We can also add some highlights and shadows on our trees because it would help them stand out from each other when they're overlapping. I also think that it would make sense to add some snow to the tree. I'm just going to go into my front tree group and just double-click, and you'll see that now I'm in isolation mode with this tree. I'll just be editing this one tree. Let's first add some snow to the top, I'm just going to copy this first shape by clicking and dragging, and let's just color that white, I think that works. Maybe I'll undo the corners, maybe adjust the sizes a little bit, re-round the corners. Let's also add a little bit of separation between each of these little triangles that make up our tree. I'm just going to draw out a rectangle using the M here to get the Rectangle Tool. I'm going to sample this green and then go into my color picker and just choose a darker version of this green. You could also use the Color Guide to choose a color here. What I'm going to do is take this triangle shape, copy it, and paste it in place with Command+Shift+V, and then I'm going to select both of these, use my Pathfinder Tool to intersect the shapes. Now I need to recolor that, I'll just click on that color again. Now let's bring the top triangle and the snow above that. Now we have a little shadow. That's a little bit harsh, we could maybe just bring down the opacity of that to make it a little bit more subtle, something like that. I'm going to repeat that process for each piece of the tree. I think that looks pretty good, let's add a little bit of a highlight on this side of the tree. The reason I chose that side of the tree is because we have light coming from the moon that's going to be illuminating this side of that tree. Let me just go back into this tree group, and I'm just going to select all of the main pieces of the tree, and then I'm going to hit Command+C, Command+Shift+V to paste them in place, and I'm just going to merge these altogether by hitting the Unite button. Now I'm going to take a duplicate of this by clicking and dragging with Option Key held down. Something like that. Now what I want to do is cut out the top, this duplicate from this other one behind it, I just have this edge of the tree. To do that, we'll use the Minus Front button, and then we can color this, maybe let's try the yellow color and then just lower the opacity to maybe something like 10 percent. Now looks pretty good little highlight on the tree, and it doesn't really work with this snow layer, so I'm going to bring that forward. But I think that the snow layer should have a little highlight on it too. Let's just repeat that process for the snow layer, so copy, paste in place, dragged out a duplicate, something like that, and then use Minus Front to cut that shape, and I can just use the Eyedropper to get that yellow color again and lower that opacity down to 10 percent. I like how that tree looks. Now I just want all my other tree to it like this too. There's actually a really cool way that you can do this quickly. What I'm going to do is copy this tree that has all the new details on it, Command+C, and I'm going to click on one of the trees that doesn't have any of those new details. Then go over to the Properties Panel and go down to Start Global Edit. You can see that it's now highlighted all of the trees that don't have those new details. All the ones that look like this one that I selected. I'm just going to hit Command+V to paste in the new detail tree, and then I'll just have to move these into place, and you can see that it lines up pretty well. In Illustrators even done a pretty good job of resizing needs trees to match. Now I can just hit Stop Global Edit, and then if I go back into my Layers Panel, you'll see that it's even paste these in the right layer. Now I have two trees in each layer, and I can just delete the second one, the bottom one, because that's my old style of tree. Now I have the new style of tree in every instance of my tree. You might need to go in and adjust some things like deleting these trunks that we can see is sticking out of the snow. To do that, you can just go to the Direct Selection Tool, which is A on the keyboard, just to select just this trunk, and then you're going to need to hit Delete twice to delete them. We can also add a little bit of a shadow in the windows. I'm going to select the first window, hit Command+C to copy, Command+Shift+V to paste in place, and then I'm going to hold down Option and drag to the right to duplicate that shape, and then I'm going to use the Minus Front to get just this little area, and then I want to color this in a darker color of yellow. I'm just going to click in to my colors and then just choose something that's a little bit darker and a little bit more saturated. I'm moving down and right, something like that. I'll repeat this process for all of the other windows. Notice that on this window, the angle is different, so the shadow would be on this side. I'm also noticing now that on the front of the roof for this window, we have two colors back-to-back until you can't see the difference between these two colors. I'm going to make this roof color the same as the other roof color, and that looks a lot better. I also could have my door have a shadow, I'll do the same thing here. We could also add a shadow coming from this overhang of the roof. I'm just going to select this inner roof shape and drag it out to duplicate it, and then let's just make the shape a little bit wider by going to the Direct Selection Tool and selecting the left two anchor points, and just drag that back over to line up with the roof. Then just take the opacity down on the shape, I'm going to go back to the Direct Selection Tool so that my opacity is visible here. Let's take this down, maybe 50 percent, maybe less, maybe 20. That looks pretty good. We'll do the same thing on this window. Adding those shadows, added some more dimension to my scene. There's a few more details and I think I can add, I think that this tree here looks a bit like its floating. Maybe if I put a little clump of snow at the bottom of it, it would anchor the tree. I could also add some little clumps of snow to the porch. I'm going to make these just like I did the clouds with the Ellipse Tool and the Pathfinder Tools. I think that worked to anchor my tree, and I like the little clumps of snow on the deck. I also think that I could add a little piece of snow behind the roof to show that the snow goes on both sides of the roof. I'm just going to go in and try make cabin layer, and then I'm just going to create a rectangle and make sure that I line up this rectangle with the top of the snow over here and color white, and let's send this to the back. It's behind the cabin and then just round the corner, something like that. I also just notice that my snow is the off-white on the roof and I want it to be just pure white, I can change that, and that looks a lot better. The last thing that I'm going to add are some stars because I think it can be fun to make them twinkling in my animation. To do that, I'm just going to zoom in, because stars are pretty small. Let's start a new layer for these stars and bring it all the way to the back. I'm just going to make a square with my Rectangle Tool, M on the keyboard, and I'm going to hold down Shift to make a perfect square. Then I'm going to rotate this square 45 degree, I'm going to hold down Shift to get it in a perfect 45 degree increment. Now I have this little diamond, then I'm going to go to the Direct Selection Tool, select my two side points. Then I'm going to go to the Scale Tool or S on the keyboard and just drag towards the center of this diamond and hold down Shift, and that way it's going to bring those two points closer together, something like that. Now I can copy this, paste it in place, and rotate this 45 degrees to make this little four-point in star shape. Maybe I'll even select both of these and unite them, and then round these inner corners. I'll just pull these out and make something like that, and maybe I'll make my stars yellow. For now, I'm just going to create this one-star. I'm going to duplicate my star in After Effects, after I've already got all the animation on it. For now, let's just make sure that this star is labeled, and we're good to go. There's one last thing to do to prepare our scene for animation, and that's to make a smoke layer that we can use to animate. I'm going to actually just delete this smoke layer and I'm going to draw in something else. What I'm going to do is just use the Pen Tool to draw a ice cream cone shape, something like that. I'm actually going to make it much taller than I'm going to want it to be, so I'll just extend these top two anchor points all the way to the top, and then also go down and make sure that my smoke is coming out from the chimney and there's no gap there, something like that. We're going to add a wave too in After Effects, it should just be straight for now and make sure that that is on your smoke layer. Hopefully your illustration is starting to come together and you have everything separated out into layers. In the next video, we're going to jump into After Effects to start animating. 15. Tour of After Effects: We're ready to start animating. But one last thing before we get into After Effects, make sure that you've saved your project. You can also delete your sketch and line art layers because we won't be needing those anymore. I'm also going to make the sun visible. Then make sure you save this and then go over to After Effects. When you first open up After Effects, it'll probably look something like this. You can just click on New project, and it should look something like this. You can also customize your user interface just like an Illustrator in After Effects. There's a bunch of other panels in the windows tab. You'll also see that I have a bunch of extra plug-ins for After Effects as well. You can drag and drop panels just like an Illustrator. But this should probably be what your default view looks like. But just do a quick little tour of After Effects because it's totally fine if you've never used After Effects or even opened it before. If you're feeling a little nervous about After Effects, you can check out my After Effects orientation. This video is about 20 minutes long and we'll go through all of the main components of After effects to get you a little bit more comfortable before we start jumping in. But I will also cover everything that you need to know in this class. The link to this After Effects orientation is going to be below this video or on my profile page on skill share. First on our tour we have the project panel. Right now our project panel is empty, but this is where all of the things that are a part of our project are going to live. Let's just go and get our illustration and put it in the project panel. To import something into your project. You can go up to file, import file or hit Command or Control+I. Then you'll just need to navigate to the folder where you saved your Illustrator file and then select it. Then make sure that you choose Import As, Composition Retain Layer Sizes. If you don't see this option, just click this options button right here. It's important that you import as composition retain layer sizes because that'll make all of our layers separated out like we had an Illustrator in that way we'll be able to animate each layer, and then just click Open. Now you'll see that you have two different things in your project panel. You have this first one, which is a composition. You can tell by this little icon here, that means it's a composition, and then you have this folder. If you toggle down the folder, you'll see all of those layers that we created in Illustrator. I'm just going to double-click to open up my composition. You can see that down here on the timeline, it's opened up my illustration here in the composition panel, and all of the layers that we made in Illustrator are down here in the timeline. The timeline is down here and this is where you're going to make all of your animation. Then next on our tour, you'll see a bunch of different panels over here. We have like a character panel where you can make and edit text, libraries if you saved your color palette as a library, this is where you'll find it. The align panels are very similar to an Illustrator. Effects in presets are things that you can add onto your layers to give them different effects. Like something like a glow would be an effect that you could add to your layers down here on the timeline. All of those are stored here. You definitely don't need to try to learn every single effect and preset in here, you're just learn them as you go. Then the preview panel is pretty straight forward, just like your play controllers to preview your animation. We're not going to be using any audio, but you would have this little audio panel if you needed it here. Now, if you ever see that I'm using a panel that you don't have on your screen, you can always find everything under window. That's a basic tour of After Effects. We've imported our Illustrator file into After Effects, but what if we wanted to go back into Illustrator and change something? Is there some dynamic link between After Effects and Illustrator? Well, the answer is sort of. Unfortunately it's just sort of. If I were to go in and change the color of something, like maybe I change the sky to blue. Then save this. You got to make sure you save it. Then go back into After Effects. After a little bit of thinking, After Effects will update the color. Things like color will update pretty easily. I'm just going to go and undo that. If you were to move an object, make sure you save. That will, for the most part, work as well. You'll start to experience problems if you start adding or deleting layers within Illustrator, those are not going to come and update in After Effects. Just be careful of that, simple things like colors you can do, and also if you want to move something, I would just do it in After Effects rather than in Illustrator. Now that you have everything imported. I'm noticing a little line in the snow on the roof of the cabin, and I'm going to go and try to fix that in Illustrator and then have it update in After Effects. I'll just jump over into Illustrator. We're not seeing that line here. But the reason that that line is happening in After Effects is because these two shapes are right next to each other with a dark shape underneath. It's showing just like a pixel of separation even though there really isn't one. What we can do is just make these two shapes overlap a little bit more to get rid of that. I'm just going to take this anchor point and drag it over. Probably this one as well, so that these shapes just overlap a little bit more. Then I'm going to hit Command+S to save this and then go back over into After Effects. Now my line is gone, to zoom in and out in After Effects, if you have a mouse, you can usually use like the little scroll wheel to scroll in and out. You can also adjust the size over here, or you can fit the composition into the available window. You can also use the period and comma keys to zoom in and out. Before we go any further, let's just save our After Effects project. Use Command or Ctrl+S to save. Then just navigate to where you've saved everything else for this project. I'm going to create a new folder called AE and hit Create. I'd like to save my After Effects project in a new folder because I have my After Effects set to auto save. It'll periodically just save a version for me as I'm working. That should be set up by default for you too. But I also sometimes like to save versions just in case something goes wrong along the way. I'm just going to name this and hit Save. Now we have that saved and just remember to periodically hit Command or Ctrl+S to save your project. 16. Animate Sun and Moon: Let's start animating. I'm going to start with the easiest thing first, and that's going to be animating the sun. Let's say that this is a scene that's looking west. The sun is going to be setting behind these mountains. I'm going to find my sun layer down here in my timeline. Now, if I toggle down this little triangle, you'll see this transform and toggle that down as well. Then you'll see these five different options. These are the core things that you can animate on one of these Illustration layers. We just want to animate the position of this sun. To start an animation, you want to hit this little stopwatch icon next to the position. Then you can see that on your timeline wherever your play head was, which is this blue line, it sets this little key-frame. This little diamond shaped right here. That key-frame is telling After Effects, that at this time, which is zero frames, zero seconds, we want this sun to be in this position. Then what we're going to do is move forward in time. Let's move over to 10 seconds. You might not have the same amount of time in your timeline as I do. Let me show you how you can change that. If you hit Command K or go up to Composition settings, you'll get this little menu box. Now, After Effects, is already set up in our composition based on our Illustrator file. It's already chosen the same size as our Illustrator file, the same name, and then the frame rate is probably going to be the last thing that you use. Right now, make sure that you change your frame rate to 30 frames per second. You have different options here. I like to use an even number frame rate for animation. I usually use 30 frames per second for most of my projects. Then for the duration, I'm setting my duration to 20 seconds. This is going to be frames, seconds, minutes, and hours. Make sure that your duration is also set to 20 seconds. Then the background color doesn't really matter here because we had a background layer in Illustrator that we've brought into After Effects. Just make sure that your settings are looking like mine and then hit "Okay". Now, make sure your play head is at 10 seconds. Then we're going to click on the "Sun" in our composition window here and just move it to the place that we want it to be at ten seconds. I'm just going to move it behind these mountains until it's totally disappeared. You can see that when I did that, After Effects, set another key-frame where my play head was. Now, if we go back to the beginning of our timeline and hit the space-bar to play this back. You can see that the sun is now animating. One thing to know when you're playing back an animation, once your animation gets a little bit more complicated, it'll take a little bit more time for After Effects to play it back. When you see this green bar on the top of your timeline, wherever the green bar is, that means that After Effects has calculated the image that's supposed to appear there and it's ready to play it back. If your green bar had little gaps in it, that means that After Effects has not yet calculated the image, and so it might play back in slow motion at first. Sometimes if you look in preview, you'll see some little red text that says not playing back in real time. Then you know that you just need to wait a little bit and keep playing it back. Keep your animation playing, but just wait until it says playing in real time or that little red message goes away. You also might see a blue bar across here and that essentially means the same thing for our purposes as the green bar. If you click on the layer, that's the sun, you can see this little line that's showing the path of the motion of the sun. It's pretty straight, just go straight down. It actually starts on screen. But I want to make this a full cycle of going from day until night so I'm going to have my sun actually start off the screen. With my play head over this first key-frame at zero frames, zero seconds, I'm going to move this sun. That's going to update the key-frame. This key-frame now is set for this position. You'll also notice that the sun does moves in a very straight line. What if we wanted to give it a little bit more of a curve? On your path, this line that connects the two positions of the sun, you'll see these little handles. You can drag these handles to adjust the motion path of the sun. I'm going to give my sun a little bit more curve like that. Let's see what that looks like. I think that looks pretty good. If your sun is not going behind the cloud or it's not going behind the mountains, it's probably just because you have your layers in the wrong order. Just like in Illustrator, you can rearrange your layers by just clicking and dragging. Whatever is on top is going to be in the front, whatever is on bottom is going to be in the back. Right now we have the sun starting out of the sky layer. It's just looks a little bit funny starting up there. What I'm going to do is make a mask so that we don't see the sun until it enters this area of the sky. To do that, I'm going to go down to my sky layer and hit "Command" or "Control D" to duplicate it. Now I have sky two. I'm just going to hit "Enter" and rename that sky mask, just so that I know what it is. Then I'm going to move this sky MASK layer above the sun layer. Then on my sun layer, I'm going to go over to track matte. If you don't see this track matte option, then click this little icon in the bottom left corner to see that option. Then where it says none in the drop-down menu, I'm going to choose Alpha Matte "sky MASK". Now you'll see that while my sun is not within the shape of this sky mask, the sun is not visible, and when it enters into that mask, it is now visible. Also notice that After Effects automatically turned the eyeball off on the sky mask layer to make that layer not visible. I'm going to do the same thing with the moon. I'm going to have the moon come into the sky from over here and then come and set right after the sun does. Starting at 10 seconds, I'm going to toggle down and find the position stopwatch, click the stopwatch to set a key-frame. Remember to set a key-frame. When you're doing the first key-frame, you always got to hit the stopwatch button. Then you can move your position. You can either move the moon within the composition or another way that you could change the position is you could actually drag these numbers. Just click and drag over the numbers to change the value and also change the position. You could also click and type in a value here. Now, let's move over to 20 seconds and make the moon set just like the sun did. Just go behind the mountain like that. Let's also adjust the handles on the moon so it does a nice arc like the sun did. You can see that I can't reach the handle over here so I'll just need to move my play head over and now I can reach that handle. Something like that. I'm also going to need to create a mask for the moon so that you won't see it when it's not in the sky area. What I'm going to do is just select this "sky MASK" that I already made for the sun, and I'm going to hit "Command" or "Control D" to duplicate it. Then I'm going to move that duplicated mask right above the moon. Then on the moon layer, I'm going to go over to track matte. From the Track Matte, I'm going to choose Alpha Matte "sky MASK 2". Now, you can see that the moon is gone when is not within that sky area. Now, I have my sun setting and my moon rising and setting as well. 17. Animate Sky: Now let's animate the color of the sky going from day to night and back to day again. Before I do that, I'm going to add some markers on my timeline so I know where sunset and sunrise are. I'm going to bring my playhead just to zero frame or zero seconds and I'm going to either hit "Control 8" on a Mac to bring up this little marker, or you can also drag from over here onto your timeline. Then once you have a marker, just double-click on that and then you can name it. So I'm going to say sunrise and then hit "Okay". This just adds a little note onto your timeline. It doesn't actually affect anything in your final animation, it's just like a little note for your own use. We know that sunrise is going to be here and sunset is going to be right at 10 seconds, so we'll do the same thing here and double-click and name this sunset. Let's now go down to our sky layer and animate the color of it. In order to do this, I need to add an effect to the sky so that I can have a color property to animate. As you'll see, the only properties that I can animate right now are these properties, and color is not one of them. I'm going to go over to my Effects & Presets panel over here, and I'm just going to use the search bar to search for a fill, as in fill color. I want to make sure that I drag this fill, so make sure that you have the fill that looks just like this one. I'm going to take this and drag it onto my sky layer in the timeline, and just drag it and drop it. Now you'll see that the sky has turned to this crazy red color, and After Effects should also automatically open up this Effects Controls panel. Remember if you don't see one of the panels, it's going to be under Window. Now, I have this color property on this layer that I can animate and we see the color property over here, but you can also see in your timeline that you have this other thing called the Effects that you can toggle down and you can also see the color property in there. What I'm going to do is set a key frame for the color at 11 seconds. I'm going to click the stopwatch to set the color, and then I'm going to use the Eyedropper Tool to color pick the sky color again to bring that back to normal. Then at eight seconds, I'm going to make this a blue color so that it's daytime. To do that, I'm just going to move my playhead, and then click on the color right here on the timeline or in the Effect Controls, both will work the same way. Click on that. Then I'm going to put in my color that I want, or just use the color picker to grab the color that I want. Then once you are happy with the color you can hit "Okay", and you'll have another key frame set. If you play this back, now the color of the sky is changing. Let's do the same thing at the end of our timeline to bring the color back to day. As you'll see when you play back your timeline, it's just going to play through and then jump back to the beginning and repeat. At the end of the timeline, I want to set another key frame. To set a key frame with the same color, I could either copy and paste this key frame, or I can hit this little key frame button over here. That's another key frame for this sky to be this dark night color. Between these two key frames on 11 and 18, there's not going to be any change in the color because both of these key frames have the same color value, and that's exactly what I want. Then I'm going to bring my playhead all the way over to the end of my timeline, and I'm going to set another key frame for this blue color. This time I'm just going to copy this key frame by clicking-and-dragging over it to select it, hitting "Command C" and then "Command V" to paste. Now, you can see that the color is back to day. If I play this back, you'll see that I have my sun setting, my moon rising and setting, and then the color of the sky changing accordingly. Let's also change the color of the windows because it doesn't really make a lot of sense for the windows to be this bright yellow when it's daytime. Because the windows actually have two different colors within them; so they have this shadow color and then the main color, I'm going to have to do this one a little bit differently. I'm going to go and find my windows layer and I'm going to right-click on the layer and go to Create, Create Shapes from Vector Layer. What this is going to do, is going to make a shape layer within After Effects. So all of my other layers, you'll see this little AI icon next to them, that means that they're illustrator layers. This layer is a native shape layer within After Effects. If I toggle this down, you'll see another option in addition to Transform called Contents. If I toggle this down you'll see all of these different groups, and these are the shapes that make up the windows. If I toggle down one of these groups, you can see that I have this fill property and a color property. I'm just going to animate the color property here within my shape layer rather than adding the fill effect onto this entire layer, because each of these different pieces that make up this window's layer has a different group within here and has a color property. I'm going to have to set more key frames this way, but I can maintain that shadow by animating the color of the shadow as well. I'm going to set a key frame at sunset for the color of the windows to be this yellow color. In every group, I'm just going to click the stopwatch next to color to set a key frame. Now that I have all of those key frames set, I'm going to go back to one frame before that. When we have our timeline with this much time showing, it's a little bit hard to see just one frame. With this little slider at the bottom, we can zoom in on the timeline. So I'm just going to bring this all the way up to the right, and now you can see the individual frames that make up our timeline. I'm just going to move my playhead one frame over. Then for the color of the shadow, I'm just going to use the color picker to color pick the color of the roof, which is also the color of the dark sky. Then for the main window I'm going to do the same thing, but this time I'm going to click on the color and make it just slightly lighter, something like that. I'll do the same thing for every window. Then in one frame, these windows are going to be turning colors. It's like someone turned on the light, so it is an abrupt color change. But I don't want the windows to be this color when it's broad daylight out around here in my timeline. What I'm going to do a set another key frame, add about eight seconds for these windows to be maybe the same color as the sky. I'm just going to color pick the window and select the sky, and that will make that blue. Then I'm going to do the same thing on the shadow of the window, but this time I'm going to click on the color box and just make that a little bit darker to make it a shadow and a little bit more saturated too. So something like that. Then I'll do the same thing for all of my other windows, and I can color pick from the one that I've already set. It looks like somehow I got this extra group that isn't showing up at all, so I can just delete that. Now we have our windows starting out with this blue reflection from the sky, and then as the sky darkens the windows are also darkening. Then right at sunset, somebody turns on the lights and the lights turn out yellow. But in order to make our animation loop, we need to make the windows turn back into the color of the day. So I'm going to bring my playhead over to 18 seconds, and I'm going to use this little key frame button to set a key frame for the yellow color at this time. I need to make sure that I do that for every layer. Then I'm going to go to the end of my timeline and just copy the blue key frame that's going to be the first key frame on the timeline and paste it into place. I could actually copy all of these booth key frames at the same time by just clicking-and-dragging over all of them, hitting "Command C" and "Command V". If you want to, you can just hit "U" on your keyboard with the windows layer selected to just see all of those key frames, and it'll even give you this nice color bar to see what's happening. Hitting "U" on your keyboard just shows any key frames on the selected layer. Now we have our scene transitioning from day and then the sun. It becomes night if somebody turns on the lights, and I guess they stay up all night and that it gets light again. 18. Animate Stars: Now let's animate this little star twinkling, and then once we have the animation on it, we can multiply it and put it all over the sky. I'm going to go down and find that little star. Let's zoom in on our composition so we can see it. When you zoom in on something in After Effects, it is going to be a little bit pixelated, but that's okay because we can still work with this. I need to first fade in the star, so I'm going to move my playhead to about maybe 11 seconds. Then I'm going to toggle down and go in and find my opacity property and set a keyframe. I'll click the "Stopwatch" and then I'll go back to 10 seconds, and I'm going to click and drag over this 100 percent number on the Opacity to bring the opacity down to zero. Now our star is going to fade in as the sky darkens. Now let's make the star look like it's twinkling. To do that, I'm just going to animate the scale. At 10 seconds, I'll set a keyframe on the scale to be at 100 percent and I'll go forward one second and set another keyframe for the scale to be 120. Then let's repeat those two keyframes. I'm just going to select them both and copy and paste them a couple of times, and let's see what that looks like. It's subtle, but you can see that the star is twinkling. Let's also have it fade out as it becomes day again. Maybe at 18 seconds, I'll set another opacity keyframe for the opacity to be 100 percent. That means that between these two keyframes that are both 100 percent, there's going to be no change. Then after it gets to this keyframe we'll have it start to fade out to zero at 19 seconds. Now the star has faded out, and it twinkles during the night. One thing we can do to make this animation look a little bit better is to add some easy ease to these keyframes. Right now these keyframes are linear and you can tell because they are diamond-shaped. That just means that the speed between all of the keyframes is consistent. But things in real life don't normally move perfectly consistently, so adding easing can make your animation look a little bit more interesting. To add easing to these keyframes, I'm just going to click and drag to select all of them, and then I'm going to right-click on any one of the keyframes, go down to Keyframe Assistant, and then Easy Ease. You can also use the F9 shortcut key. Now you can see that the keyframes are these hourglass-shaped, which means that they have easing applied to them. Now if I were to select these scale keyframes and if I want to see what this motion looks like visually, I can go over to the Graph Editor. I'm just going to click this button to fit my graph to the view, and now you can see a graph of the speed of the motion of the scale change in this animation. Right at the beginning of the scale it starts at zero. You can see that it increases in speed, and then it goes back down to zero. This is when the scale is 100 percent, then it speeds up and slows back down as it reaches 120. What Easy Ease means is that the motion of whatever property that you're animating is going to be slow at first, speed up, and then slow down again before it reaches the next keyframe. Here's a simple demo to further illustrate what it means that easing to your keyframes. The square up here just has linear keyframes, which you can see it by the shape of the keyframes on this layer. The circle has easing applied, so the keyframes are hourglass-shaped. When I playback this animation, you'll see the difference in the speed of these moving across the screen. You'll notice that the square moves at the same speed from start to finish, whereas the circle starts out slow, moves a little faster, and then slows down again at the end. This is what I mean when I say to add easing to your keyframes. But you can also go in to the Graph Editor and adjust the graph. Instead of having the circle move in this nice arc where it moves slow, fast, slow, we could adjust this curve by adjusting the handle so that maybe it moves really fast at first, and then it slows down. Let's see what this looks like. You can see that in this way you can add different effects to the motion of your animation. We're not going to need to worry about this much with the snowy cabin animation, but this is just something that's good to be aware of because it's really fundamental to how animation works in After Effects. Back to our star, there's one other thing that I think you should be aware of in After Effects. During the day of our scene, anything between zero and 10 seconds, our star is not going to be visible because the opacity is set to zero percent but this layer is still existing during this time. Another way to have something not exist in your composition is to trim the actual layer. If I trim this mountain's layer, you can see that the mountains are going to be gone until the layer starts on the timeline. If I want to, I could actually just trim my star's layer just so that when I'm looking at my timeline, it might be a little bit easier for me to see that the stars don't exist in the daytime. In order to trim a layer, you're just going to hover over the start of that layer and you should see these two little arrows on your cursor, and then you can just drag the layer to trim it. Now there's a difference between trimming a layer and moving it. I can also just move this layer on my timeline so then my star would now be visible during the daytime. If you want to move a layer, make sure that you're grabbing it from somewhere in the middle and slide it along the timeline, whereas if you want to trim the layer, make sure you're hovering over the start or the end and sliding with the little arrow icon for your cursor. So that's just something that's good to be aware of. Let's duplicate this star and spread it all throughout the sky. I'm going to just lock the star and hit "Command D" to duplicate, and then I can just take it in my composition and drag it over. Now we have two stars, and we can just keep repeating that process. If you want to add a little bit of variation to the size of the stars, you can go in, I'm going to use the shortcut, so the shortcut to get to the scale is S, and now you can see all of those scale properties. What I'm going to do is just hover over one of the scale property and then click on where it says Scale. Now you can see that all of these scale keyframes are highlighted in blue. Now with all of the keyframes highlighted in blue, I can ingest all of the scale. If I drag this up to maybe 115, now, this keyframe is going to be 115, but my other keyframes are going to be adjusted proportionally. So now this one is 135. Now I just made a slightly bigger star. This one's going to have the same animation, but the keyframes are all adjusted accordingly. I could also stagger the animation on this keyframe so the stars aren't twinkling at the same time. To do that, I could just select all my key and then just drag the keyframes over a few frames so they're not lined up with the keyframes on the original star. Now, these stars will twinkle at slightly different times. I can just repeat that process for a bunch of different stars in my scene. Some of the stars can be identical, but some might have a little bit of variation. Now I have a bunch of different stars in my scene. 19. Animate Smoke: Let's animate the smoke coming out of the chimney and making a wave-like motion. I'm going to go over to my effects and presets to grab an effect to apply to this smoke. I'm going to search for wave, and I want to grab the wave warp effect. Make sure you're grabbing this wave warp, and then just drag that onto your smoke layer in your timeline. Right now, it might be hard to see that that's done anything. But if you look at the top, you can see that it started to make a wave. But this wave is going to go in the wrong direction as what we want. What we need to do first is in the effects controls panel that should have popped up, you're going to want to change the direction from 90 degrees to 0 degrees, and I can see that it's made a nice wavy smoke like effect. But this is not quite the style that I want. It's a little bit too wavy for me. I'm going to go over to the effects controls panel and adjust the wave width. I'm going to bring it up to maybe like 60. That looks pretty good. Let's play this back and just see what it looks like. It's going a little bit fast, and you can also see that the bottom of the smoke is moving quite a bit and that doesn't look very accurate for smoke coming out of a chimney. What we need to do is just anchor where the smoke comes out of the chimney. That's called pinning. We're going to go up to the pinning option and choose bottom edge, and that just snaps that into place. Now if we play it back, you'll see that it doesn't move nearly as much. I'm also going to change the wave speed to slow the smoke down. One, in the speed, means that it's going to take one second for the smoke to make one complete cycle of this wave. If you see one second is the same as zero seconds. If I click back between those, those look the exact same. It takes one second to make one full cycle. In order to make my animation loop perfectly, I need to choose a speed value that will work with the amount of time that my animation is. I'm going to change this to 0.2, a slower speed, and this should make it so that it loops. I can just check that really quickly by going to 0, going to 20, back to 0, nothing moved, so we know that those are going to be the same, I know I'll make a perfect loop. If you want to learn more about looping animations and making perfectly looping animated scenes, Check out my class, Looping Animated Scenes in After Effects. So far this smoke is looking pretty good. I'm going to lower the opacity of it by just going to the smoke layer, and I'm going to use a shortcut. The shortcut to bring up the opacity property is T on the keyboard, and I am going to bring this back to maybe 50 percent. Let's also mask out the smoke within the sky layer, so it's not going all the way up here. I'm just going to use the same sky mask that I've already used for my sun and moon. I'll just duplicate this. I could just duplicate the sky layer itself, but I already named this mask. Then I don't have to rename. I'll just duplicate that by hitting command D, move it above the smoke layer, and then on my smoke layer, I'm going to go over to track map. Remember, if you don't see track map hit this little icon in the bottom left, and then under track map choose Alpha maps sky mask. Now it's clipped the top of the smoke out so we only see the smoke when it's within this sky area. 20. Animate Snow: Let's make a snow in our a winter scene. To do this, I'm going to add a solid layer and then add an effect to that. To make a new solid, you go up to Layer, New, and then Solid or hit "Command or Control Y". I'm just going to name this, and the size should be the same size as your composition. The color doesn't really matter because we're going to apply a snow effect to this, and you'll never actually see this color. Just hit ''Okay'', and you will see that solid over your composition for now. Then I'm going to go over to Effects & Presets to find the effect. After Effects does have a snow effect built-in called CC Snowfall, but I'm actually not going to use this effect. I'll show you why. The little snowflakes in this effect are just like little lines. I don't really like how they look so much and you can't customize the shape of a snowflake, so I'm actually going to use a different effect. Let me just undo that. The effect that I'm going to use is called CC Particle. Make sure that you find CC Particle World, and drag that onto your solid layer. The first thing that I'm going to do is just get rid of all these guides and grids because I find them distracting. Over in Effect Controls if you just toggle down Grid & Guides, you can just uncheck all of these boxes. The effect is just this little yellow firework thing in the middle of our scene. Obviously, we're going to have to make a lot of adjustments over here to make this look like snow. First, I'm going to go under Physics. Then next to where it says Animation, I'm just going to adjust this from explosive to directional axis. Now you can see what this effect looks like. It's going really fast, so the first thing I'm going to do is just take the velocity all the way down to zero. You can see that it's just going to move straight up and down. I also need to spread it all out, so that there's snow going across my entire scene. To do that, I'm going to go under Producer and then just adjust the X radius. I'll bring it up so that the snow is going to be spread out across my entire scene. You can also adjust the Z radius to give it a little bit more depth. Let's also bring this so that the particles are going to start at the top of the scene. To do that, I'm just going to adjust the Y position and bring it up like that. We need to make these instead of lines into something that looks more like a snowflake. Under Particle, I'm going to change the particle type from line to faded sphere. You can see how that's already starting to look a little bit more like a snowflake. I'm also going to adjust the birth and death size, so I'll bring this down to 0.08 for both the birth and death size. We obviously want to make these white, so for our birth and death color I'll choose white. That's already looking like snow. Let's play this back. It's still going really fast. What we need to do is adjust the gravity, because right now the gravity is the only thing that's really affecting the speed of the snow because we turned the velocity all the way down to zero. In the Gravity, I'm just going to click and type in 0.02. Let's see what that looks like. If you notice up here, the snow is still up here but it's not reaching the ground. That's because the lifespan or the longevity of the snow is only one second, and so it's just fading out before it ever reaches the ground. I'll just increase the longevity to 10 seconds, and now the snow has enough time to reach the ground. That's looking pretty good. We can adjust how much it's snowing by adjusting the birth rate. I'm actually going to make two different layers of snow. One will be in the front of my scene, and one will be behind the trees and cabin so that it looks like there's a little bit more depth in my scene because some snowflakes will disappear behind objects. I'm going to bring my snow rate down to about half as much as I actually want since I'll be duplicating this layer. I'm just going to bring this to 0.2 instead of 2. Now we have a lot less snow. To add some depth to the snow effect, I'm going to just take this particle layer and then duplicate it by hitting ''Command D", and then bring this second layer behind all of my trees and just above the clouds. These snow particles look identical to these other snow particles on top, so what we need to do is just offset them a little bit. To do this, we can go into Extras, and then just change the random seed to any number except for zero. You can see how that's already moved snow particles, and now we have more snow. The way that the snow effect is working is that there's no snow at the very start of our timeline, and then as the animation plays through the snow starts and then continues to fall. If you wanted the snow to also stop falling at the end, you could just set a key frame for the birth rate for the snow to be at this birth rate, and then you can even just go one frame later and set the birth rate to be zero. Then if we just solo this layer we just means to only focus on this layer; so everything else is hidden above this layer, then you can see that the snow will stop generating new snow at the top. It'll take a little bit for this snow to fall all the way to the ground, but that would be how you would make this snow stop. You just need to make sure you do that on both of your layers. I actually don't want to do that, I'm going to try to make my snow loop. To make a particle effect loop, it's going to be a little bit more complex than the stuff that we've done so far. If you're happy with how your animation is, you definitely do not need to do this step. But if you want to try it, then give it a try. You can always undo and go back and just have your snow falling like normal, like we have now. But if you want to try to loop your snow, I'll show you how to do that. For now, I'm just going to delete this second layer of snow, so we can just focus on the one layer of snow up here. What I'm going to do is just first close these all up. I'm going to set a key frame at the very start of my timeline for the birth rate to be at 0.2. I'm just going to hit ''U'' on the keyboard to see the key frames on this layer, and then at the very end of my timeline, I'm going to set another key frame for the birth rate to be zero. What I need to do is select both of these key frames, so you can just select "Birth Rate" to select the two key frames. Then I'm going to right-click and go down to Toggle Hold Key frame. A hold key frame just means that instead of interpolating between two key frames like having the birth rate go from 0.2 and then slowly decrease down to zero, instead of doing that like normal key frames, a hold key frame is going to maintain or hold this value of this first key frame until it gets to the second key frame. Then once it gets to the second key frame, it'll just switch over like flipping a switch to the value of this key frame. What we've done here is, the snow is starting just because that's the way that the particle effect works. Then right here anything after this, anything beyond our timeline, the snow is going to stop falling. What we can do to make this loop is to just unselect the key frames by just clicking off of them. Then just select the layer and hit ''Command D'' to duplicate the layer. Then I'm going to hit ''U'' on the keyboard to see the key frames on this layer, and I'm going to drag this entire layer to the left. Make sure you're dragging the layer and not just the key frames, so I will just click in the middle of the layer and drag it to the left. I want to align this key frame to the very start of my timeline. Your layer might be a little shorter than mine, so you're going to need to extend your layer by hovering your mouse over the end of the timeline until you get those two little arrows and then just drag out the rest of the layer to complete your timeline. I'm just going to solo these layers. Again, that just means that I'm focusing on these two layers and hiding everything else by clicking this little button right here. Let me explain how this looping effect is working. As this snow particle is starting up, now we're just seeing this one. As this one is starting up and continuing to snow across the whole timeline, this second layer is starting with snow spread across the screen and then it stops. So by having one layer starting and one layer stopping, it makes a perfect loop. If we just scrub through this timeline, you can see how the start and the end look exactly the same to make a perfect loop. If you got a little confused there, just go back and make sure you're following each step with me exactly. But also if you don't want to worry about this, this is not really a beginner topic, so don't worry too much if this was confusing. Now that I have my snow looping, I just want to duplicate this snow and put it behind the cabin and trees. I'm going to duplicate both of these layers by selecting them both and hitting ''Command D''. Then I'm going to drag both of these layers behind the trees, so right above the clouds. Then I need to go into the Extras and change this random seed, so I'll just pick 100. Make sure that it got changed on both of those snow layers. Now both of these will be looping as well. If you look closely, you'll see that some of the snowflakes are going behind the cabin and the trees which just gives the scene a little bit more of depth. I also want to mask out, so there's no snow outside of my little sky area. To do that, I'm going to make a pre-composition. So I'm just going to select both of my snow layers and then hit ''Shift'', ''Command'', or ''Control'' and "C". Then I want to name this snow. I'm going to make sure that Move all attributes into the new composition is checked and that Adjust composition duration to the time span of selected layers is unchecked, and I just hit ''Okay''. You can see that that's grouped both of those two snow layers into this one layer here. If I were to double-click on this snow layer, it'll open up in my timeline and I can see these two layers. You can also see that now in your Project panel, you have a new composition called snow. That's just this snow composition. If I go by clicking this tab to go back into my full animation, I'm just going to use the mask on this one composition rather than duplicating the mask twice. Honestly, another reason why I did this is just to show you how to use compositions because that's really important in After Effects. Now I'll just duplicate this sky MASK layer by hitting ''Command D'', bring it above the snow. Then on the snow layer under Track Matte, I'm going to select "Alpha Matte 'sky MASK'". Now that's masked out some of the snow but remember I have two layers of snow, so I'm going to repeat that process with the snow. Now all of my snow is masked within the sky, and I have two levels of snow for depth, and my snow is also looping. 21. Render: Our scene is really coming together. If you want to animate one more thing before we render this or in other words export it, you can animate the position of the clouds. I just animated these clouds moving just ever so slightly to the right. Then in order to make this loop, I animated them back into their original position after sunset. You can see those key frames on my timeline. Remember that if it will help you to pick a part in my actual project files, you can download those in the Projects and Resources tab. Now I'll show you how to export or render your animation. Go up to Composition, Add to Render Queue, and then it's going to bring up this tab which is the Render queue. We want to change the Output Module to Apple Pro Res 422. I already have that set as my default but yours is probably different, so just click on the blue word right here and then you can go into Format options and choose that option. Then just hit "Okay". Then Output To is going to be wherever you want to save this on your computer. Just navigate to the folder where you're saving everything else for this project. Then I like to save my final animations in a folder called Out. You can make a new folder if you would like to do that too. Then just hit "Save" and then just click the "Render" button. Then you can navigate to the folder where you saved this video file and then just open it up to play it. Now let's just export it in MOV file, and this is a high-quality file type but it's also going to be big in file size. Also if you want to put your GIF on Instagram, it's best to have an MP4 file. There's two ways to create an MP4 file. From After Effects, you can go to Composition, Add to Adobe Media Encoder Queue. Adobe Media Encoder is a separate app from After Effects, but it should be included in your Adobe CC subscription. You can either do it that way or you can open up Media Encoder and then just drop your MOV file into Media Encoder. I prefer to do it this way because I find that the colors and quality are better when you export an MOV file first and then make that into an MP4 file. If your settings don't already look like this, just click on them and make sure you choose H264 and that should be the only setting that you have to change. Then this is going to be wherever you save your project to and then just hit this little "Play" button to render. Now you can see that that's made an MP4 file. Another file format you might want to make your animation into is a GIF file. Now GIF files are a little bit more complex and I go way more into depth into GIFs and best practices for GIFs in my class, Looping Animated Scenes in After Effects. Definitely check that out if you're interested more in GIFs. GIFs can be good for places where you want to play your animation automatically and have it just loop forever. That could be on a website or like in a text message. The easiest way to export a GIF is to go up to Composition, Add to Adobe Media Encoder Queue or you could also use your MOV file to do this. Then give it a second to open up Media Encoder and include your file here in the queue. Then you're going to want to click on this first option. Then where it says Format, you're going to want to change that to animated GIF. Then just hit "Okay" and Output is wherever you want to save your file to and then just hit "Render". Sometimes you might experience some weird artifacting when you export a GIF through Media Encoder, so you could also try exporting through Photoshop. Also you'd want to think about optimizing your animation to be rendered as a GIF. Again I go way more into detail about all of that in my class, Looping Animated Scenes in After Effects. Check that out if you are really keen on making a GIF. 22. What's Next: Congrats on completing this course. I hope you feel like you've learned a lot and accomplished something new. I hope that After Effects feels less intimidating and more doable now. Creating a whole project like this from illustration to animation is a big accomplishment. I know that posting your work can be scary, but you got to start somewhere, and posting a class project is a great place to start. Remember, this is not my first After Effects project, so try not to compare your work to mine. The only difference is a lot of hours of practice. You can post your project as a GIF using the image button or as a video by uploading it to a site like YouTube or Vimeo, and posting the link here. If there's anything in particular that you want feedback on, please include a note to let me know. I also want you to know that this is just the beginning of what you can do with After Effects, which is exciting. There's so much more you can do, plus you can incorporate other tools into this workflow, like Procreate, Photoshop, Adobe Animate, or other tools for frame-by-frame animation, and even Cinema 4D. I only say this to tell you that there are really no limits not to overwhelm you. I think that when you're starting out, it's best to master Illustrator and After Effects first. So if you're ready to keep learning, click on my name above this video to check out the other classes that I'm teaching on Skillshare. Make sure that you're following me on Skillshare and Instagram so that you'll be notified when I have a new class for you. Thanks for being here. Until next time, happy animating.