Dive into After Effects: Learn the Basics | Phil Ebiner | Skillshare

Dive into After Effects: Learn the Basics

Phil Ebiner, Video | Photo | Design

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10 Lessons (40m)
    • 1. Intro

      0:56
    • 2. Project: Create a Title Page

      1:05
    • 3. Opening After Effects for the First Time

      4:07
    • 4. Creating a New Composition

      4:41
    • 5. How to Import Files into After Effects

      2:19
    • 6. The Tools You Need to Know

      4:56
    • 7. Adding Text to Your Project

      4:59
    • 8. Adding Shapes to our Project

      8:15
    • 9. Adjusting Layers with Scale, Rotation, Opacity

      6:39
    • 10. Thank You & What's Next

      1:36

About This Class

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After Effects is an amazing program that can help you create motion graphics, visual effects, and titles that make your videos better, but it can be intimidating to try out. In this 45-minute course, you’ll learn the basics of using After Effects: understand the program layout, learn how to use the tools, get comfortable with using the timeline. We’ll cover everything from opening up After Effects for the first time, importing assets, and creating your very first composition.

This class is perfect for video creators, designers, and everyone who wants to learn After Effects in an un-intimidating way. No prior knowledge or experience is required! By the end of the class, you’ll have the basic knowledge to start creating projects and dive even further into the world of After Effects.

Transcripts

1. Intro: everyone. Welcome to the diving toe after effects Basics Course. This course is going to be so awesome. We're creating our own tattle card right within after effects. So first off, what is after effects after effects is a program that a lot of professionals used to add motion graphics and visual effects to improve their videos. People make everything from lower thirds and intro titles toe Hollywood style visual effects within after effects. It's an amazing tool, but it's kind of hard to get into, and that's why I created this course. The dive into after effects Siris in this first course will be creating Attallah card for your own brand or your favorite brand right within after effects. So you'll follow me as I create my own tile card, using all the basic tools that you need to know to really get started with after effects. Thank you for taking the time out of your day to watch this video, and I can't wait to see you in the class 2. Project: Create a Title Page: Hey, everyone, welcome to the course. The dive into after effects the basics. In this course, the project is going to be to create a tattle card for your brand or a brand of your choice . So all we're doing is creating some sort of tile accord that in a later course in the future we will add motion to. But right now we're just creating the layout. So we're adding text we're creating shapes were adding images, and we're playing with different adjustment properties for those layers to come up with the talent card that we really, truly love. So this is the one that I created for videos, go online dot com my brand. Throughout all of the lessons, I'll be building up this title card. So will we be playing with the text, the shapes, the images, everything as we go through the course so you can follow along. So start thinking of what you want your title card to look like, and by the end of the course, I'm sure you'll have the skills to create it. Thanks for watching, and we'll see you in the next video 3. Opening After Effects for the First Time: Hey there, in this video, I'm going to be diving into the after effects program. And so I just wanted to go over some of the main features and how to navigate after effects for someone that is coming into after effects with no experience. I know it's kind of intimidating. This is what it would look like after you started a project. But I'm going to start a new project so that we can start out with square one. So in after effects, when you open it up, it will probably ask you to start a new project. But for me, you can always go to file new new project. I'm going to save this project. Okay, so here is the opening screen of after effects. If yours doesn't look like this, the first thing you want to do is change the workspace. You can do that by going upto window workspace and changing to standard or going upto workspace standard up here. If there are different windows within after effects, these little boxes are called windows. If they are showing up in your after effects window, then you can go upto window and find the specific one and check it on or off. Okay, so up here, in the top left is your toolbar. These air, the different tools that will be using and learning about on how toe add different things like text shapes, custom shapes, masks, different effects and will only be using a few of them in this course. But as you get more advanced within after effects, you can do lots of cool things with different tools up here. Down below is the project window. This is where you will see files in different elements that you bring into after effects and add to your different compositions. A composition is basically a new video or a new sequence. We'll learn about how to create a new composition in the next video. There are different tabs in some of these windows, so here we have project and effects controls. If we had effects, you will see them there. But we won't be talking about effects in this course in the middle. This is the big composition window. I'm going to just create new composition really quickly will be learning how to do that in the next video, just so you can see what it will look like when you have a video or a composition in this window to the right, There are different panels, effects and presets. This is important for future use. We won't be using that in this course below that paragraph and character. You can also move these around if you want some moving these tabs left to right. You can also undocked these panels and put them above or below. If you want to have the paragraph settings always on the screen, you can make them bigger, smaller by dragging, clicking and dragging the edge of one of the windows. So character and paragraph this is important when we're going to be adding text. Below is an A line window. This might not be open for you. So remember, go upto window. Click that align. We'll be talking a lot about this later on, and then down below is the timeline. This is where we will be adding different layers, different elements, text shape images, and we will be able to control and manipulate them down here and then. Lastly, there's the file menu, all the menus up here, the top. You have different options for creating new compositions, a lot of them have buttons down here on in after effects itself, but you can also get to them up in the windows. I will walk you through everything, so just sit back, enjoy the ride, and let's get on to how to create and start a new composition. 4. Creating a New Composition: Hey, welcome back in this video, we're going to be showing you how to start a new composition and choose the right settings for your video. So let's head over to the project window. This is where we will be adding a new composition. We can do that by hitting this little button down here at the bottom of the window, which looks like a little film clip. And if you hover over these buttons and hold their a little pop up, will say what each of these buttons is. Or you can go up to composition, new composition or hit command and on your keyboard. That's for Mac users or control. And if you're using windows, so do any of those, and a window will pop open with the composition settings. So first you have composition names, so let's give this composition and name so we will call this title card, and then beneath this are all of the settings. So you have basic and advanced tabs. We won't be doing anything in the advance, and then there are different options for the size and the frame rate, so the size is going to be how wide is it how tall There's different presets you can choose so you can choose one of these popular ones and one that might work for you. Or you can customize it by going in here and choosing a composition size that you want So say you need a composition that is specifically 200 pixels wide by 100 pixels wide. Then you can create a composition that size pixel aspect ratio. Make sure that that's at on square pixels and then frame rate. This is where you have to choose the frame rate of your video. Typically for online viewing, 29 97 is what you want. 23 976 is more of a film look, and this is used if you are exporting a film or a video ad. That frame rate. So that's one thing to note is, if you are creating a motion graphics using after effects for a video project, make sure that you know what frame rate the video was actually shot in because you want to match the frame rate of the video with the graphics that you create in after effects. Does that make sense? So say I took out my camera out and shot some video at 23 976 frame rate. If I'm in after effects, I want to make sure that I choose that frame rate so that it matches. I would stick with 29 97 If you're just creating a project within after effects, that's good to go. I'm gonna go back up here to the width and height. I'm going to do 1920 by 10. 80. This is full HD quality, and it will look super sharp when we export resolution. We just want to keep at full start time code zero and then duration. This is where we set how long it is. So you have thes milliseconds. You have seconds, minutes and hours so you can create however long you want the duration to be. So let's just create one that is 10 seconds background color. Just leave that as black and then hit. Okay, so you will see that the talent card composition has now popped up into your project window . You could even rename this by right clicking, hitting rename or by clicking and impressing. Enter or return on your keyboard and typing in a new name And then you can also organize files in the project window with folders. Just add a little folder with this folder icon and name it, and we'll call this compositions. Now I can add all of my compositions into this folder and, of course, in our composition window. This is the new composition that we have created. It doesn't have anything in it, but we will be adding things soon. One thing to note with your composition, this little magnification ratio is very important. You want to make sure that is at fit up to 100 to start out with. We can always zoom in and zoom out later. But make sure that you had that fit up to 100% so that you know, this is everything that your composition has the show. Thanks for watching. And in the next video, we'll be covering how toe import your own video photo and other types of assets into after effects 5. How to Import Files into After Effects: Hey there in this video, I'm going to show you how to import photos and other graphics into after effects so that you can work with them in your new videos. So let's practice adding a photo two year project. I've already imported a photo here, and if you double click, you can open it up in this footage window, and you can always tab over back to the composition to import footage. You can right click hit, import in press file, or you or you can go up to file import file or, of course, using the hockey Command. I. So this brings up the import file window and you will notice that I like to keep things very organized, and I would highly suggest doing this with your projects. So with within every project, I would keep a folder for the project name with the project files within that you can even have images, other types of graphics, music, different folders for different things and then have that match the project window within after effects. So I'm going to select the Swiss image. Actually, I already import that when I'm going to bring in the fill Evan er Swiss background one and just click open. So now I'm going to move that within my images folder so that it matches my organization back in my Finder folder. Another way to bring in files is just to go over to your finder or your documents and click and drag into the project window. So there we have another Swiss Alps image. I'm going to delete that one, and we can open up my new background image. You can do this with any type of file that works with after effects, such as most types of images, including photo shop graphics files like illustrator files, video fouls, music, sound bites. You can add all of these into your project window using that import feature that I just talked you about. 6. The Tools You Need to Know: Hey, everyone in this video will be covering some of the basic tools that you will be using in this after effects project. This will be the selection tool, the shape tool the masked wore, the pen tool and the text tool. So first the selection tool. This is just like your ordinary mouse, but this allows you when you have it selected to click between your different elements in your project window, and you can bring them into your composition. And the way we do that is safer. One of these images, you just click and drag it onto your composition window or down in the timeline. Let's just drive over to our composition window. Now you'll notice that a new layer has appeared in our timeline. That is this image, and this purple bar represents this image, and we can click and drag and move this bar left or right to move it up or back in time. So here we have our time indicator as well, and you could move this up and back in time from zero seconds all the way to 10 seconds. So that's the selection tool Now, to get rid of a layer you just click it within the composition, or click the layer down here in your timeline and hit delete on your keyboard so the shape tool is very cool. So if you hold down the shape tool, you get different options, such as the rectangle tool, a rounded rectangle, the lips, the polygon and the star tool. So if we select one of them, let's do the lips. We can just click and drag and create a shape. Now we'll be going over mawr of the different options, such as the fill the stroke, controlling how you create this shape later on, when we actually implement this and create our title card that we are doing in this course . But for now, just you can play around with the shapes again. Let's try the rectangle tool. And one thing when quick tip is that if you hold shift down on your keyboard, it constrains the poor portion of your shape. So that's a perfect square or a perfect circle. So those air to great tools that rectangle and the circle tool or lips. And then there's the other shape tools as well. So let's get rid of this and then Let's go through this pen tool so those pencil is awesome because it is a way to create custom shape. So if you use your pencil and just click within your composition, you can create a custom shape that's going to be very neat now if you want to create multiple shapes and this goes for the pen tool or the rectangle tool, while you can just click another shape and create it. But this creates a shape underneath this one layer, and while this is really good for some instances for our purposes, we're going to want to create separate layers for every shape that we are creating. So let me go ahead and delete that shape to that I created. So select it. Hit delete on my keyboard, and you will notice that the shape layer is highlighted. If I click off of it, you'll notice now it's not highlighted. Now it is highlighted. So to create a new shape on a different layer, I want to click off of that layer so no layers air selected down here and then use my pen tool or my rectangle tool or whatever tool you want and create another shape and now you have a different shape layer. We can rename these so say we want to rename the shape Layer tool to Pentagon, for example. Weaken, select it hit, return on your keyboard and type in the new name. So that way you can keep organized and know what shape is which in your timeline. Okay, I'm going to take my selection tool. Delete both of these. And now let's look at the text tool. So if we click the text tool button and then click on our composition, Weaken, start typing. So video school online dot com is what we will be using and over in your character panel. You have all the different options for choosing fonts, the font size, different aspect ratios of the font You can squeeze it or make it make it fatter. You can also play with different, bold and italics. The alignment, the paragraph alignment. Lots of things will be covering in actually the next video when we actually start to add elements to our title card. So those were the main tools. Play around with them. If you have any questions, please let me know, and otherwise we'll see you in the next video 7. Adding Text to Your Project: Hey there in this video will be covering the text tool a little bit in debt, more in depth and will be actually adding this text to our composition. So first, let's get over to our composition that we had created title card. The first thing we want to do is actually create a white background. I talked about creating shapes last video, and you could create a shape that's the background, or you can create a new solid. So if you go up to a layer new, solid or hit command, why this will pop up a module to ask you for the solid settings, select the color that you would want it. Okay, okay, again. And now you have a perfectly full shape that fills your entire composition. So I'm just going to hit this little lock button over here on the left side of the timeline so that this layer stays there. I can't click it. I can't move it or do anything to it. And I want that because I'm going to be adding text now. So let's take my horizontal text tool. The first thing we want to do is over in our character panel make sure the fill color is black because we're going to have a light background. Now. I'm just going to click in my composition and type in the name of my brand video school online dot com, and I want to make it look like this. So what I did with this was I had a cascading font size and the style of fun. I'm using open songs, which is a very great fought for video projects. It's a sawn Sarah font. It's very clean looking. So let me select all the text and first set the pixels to 70. I'm going to set the boldness to extra bold, and then I'm going to just go through and change these so school. I'm going to change too bold online. I'm going to change too semi bold and then dot com. I'm going to change too regular, and then I'm going to go in and decrease the sides. So selecting school, I'm going to decrease the text size by 10 pixels to 60 and then the online to 50 in the dot com to you guessed it 40. Okay, so now if I take my selection tool, I can move this around and try to center it. But there's an easier way to do that. If you have your align window open, you can just hit this horizontal center alignment button, and it will align it in the center of your image. Another thing you can do is go down to this button right here, which is the Choose Grid and Guides options and hit title action safe. And this comes up with the title action Safe Little Guides that shows where you want your titles to be in within, so that if your video ends up on TV, if you're creating a video for TV or film, you know where your titles need to be. So there on the screen. But it also has this plus sign in the middle that helps you see where the center of your composition is. So that's a great tool done now about Okay, so I'm gonna turn that off. So if we take our selection tool, an easy way to create another text layer is to actually just duplicate what we've already have up here and then change. So I'm just going to select this layer and hit command C Command V to copy and paste. Or you can just press command D or control D. If you're on the windows and duplicate it, I'm going to move it down. And while I'm moving it down, I'm going to hold the shift button. I'm also going to hit the paragraph styles and make sure that it's centered. Okay, so now let's say Caldas, premium courses and tutorials. Now if I select all of it just by hitting command A. I'm going to change the style Teoh italics that I'm going to change the font size to 40. Let's see if that's what I had before size 40 semi bold italics. So this was a semi bold italics, actually. So I'm going to select all semi bold italics. So now we have our to text layers, so I just want to make sure that these two things are 100%. So this is the with the vertical scale on the horizontal scale. Just want to make sure this is that 100 for this one as well. Aside from that, all these other settings look good, and I think we're ready to move on to creating shapes 8. Adding Shapes to our Project: everyone in this video will be covering how to create shapes. And specifically, you'll be following me as I create this video player for my title card. So let's get into our title card. We have our text from last lesson. I'm going to move this text up, move this text down just so we have a little bit more space and then I'm going to zoom in on the composition. I can do this down here by hitting that 100% or I can go up to the zoom tool up here and click within to my composition and hit the selection tool again. So let me take my rounded rectangle tool to create the outer line of my comment of my shape . I'm going to make sure that I don't have any layers down here selected, and then I'm going to change these settings before I create the shape. So first I want this shit stroke to be black. I want the filled to be transparent, so I'm going to click this Phil button and click this button that has the red line through the rectangle, and that's none. So that's a transparent Phil and I'm do. It's going to change the stroke toe 10 and we'll go from there. I can always change these later. Then I'm just going to click into my composition and create a rectangle, something that looks about the size of a video player. The right aspect. Let me go back to my talent card. So it was a little bit smaller than the video school online text. So what I can do now is go back to my selection tool. Now, this is something we'll learn a little bit more about later in the next video. But down here you can get to a lot of different properties four year, different layers. So if I hit while I have shape layer selected, if I had asked on my keyboard, I can see the scale property, and from here I can scale up or down this shape. So I'm just going to scale it down a little bit like that. I'm going to zoom in a little bit more so we can see everything that we're working with. That I'm going to take this hand tool to move the composition around. So I'm actually moving the composition. I'm not just moving the shapes within the composition, moving the whole composition so that I can see it in my composition window. So now I want to create this grey bar that's underneath the shape. So let me do that with my pen tool, so I don't want a stroke, So I'm just going to make this zero. And for the Phil, I'm going to make a medium grey hit, okay? And then I'm just going to start creating that bar. So first I'm going to click over here on the left and then I'm going to hold shift and then click over here on the right. I hold it shift so that it creates a perfectly level line. If I didn't hold shift, I just undid that. And then I was trying to be perfect. It's going to be very hard. So hold, shift and click, and that will create a good level line. So then I'm just going to keep going, and what you can do is you can actually click and drag and see what that does. It actually creates a little curve so that it matches the curve of this rounded rectangle and you can hit undo if you want this Command Z to re do anything. So I'm just gonna go around here like this, so make sure that you finish off the loop, you connect all the way to where you started. Okay? So now this is good. Except it looks a little funky because the shape is on top of this black stroke that I added to change that, I can flop these layers in my timeline. But first I want to rename these. So this one I'm going to rename player outline. This one will be player bottom. And now I'm going to just flip them, click the player bottom and drag below the player outline, and now it's below it. So let's create this bar right here. I'm going to do this with the pen tool. Make sure nothing selected down here, and I want my stroke to be 15 and I want my fill to be nothing. And now, if I just click on one end and then click on the other end, it creates a stroked shape. It's not a rectangle. It's a line that has a stroke. And then that's all we want. So I can just use the selection tool to center this. I want to make sure that I have this shape Blair selected and hit a line layers. If I select all of them, actually, I can a line layers to make sure that they're all are all centered. So now I'm going to call this play bar background. Let's just make sure that color is right. So I use a little bit of a different gray. So I'm just going to take change my stroke color to like a dark gray. And then what I'm going to do is just duplicate this layer hitting command d changing the stroke to a red. So now we have our red bar. But let me just rename this toe play bar red, and now I want to shrink it. So I'm just going to select one of these ends and drag inwards that I'm going to drag. Then I'm going to drag this bar over to the left, and I could use my keyboard keys on the keyboard to make sure that it lines up. It could hold shift and right or left to move even further to jump a few frames. Just make sure that it lines up something like that and we're good to go. So now let's create this circle and triangle in the middle. So I'm going to take my lips tool and changed my stroke to black. Then change it the with 2 10 Then I'm just going to hit shift and drag. I'm just going to create a perfect circle. Something like that. I'm going to align this into the center and then I'm going to move it up a bit. So I'm going to hit V to get my selection tool. Then move it up while holding shift toe. Lock it to this axis and it's moving about right in the middle between the top of the outline bar and the top of the bottom bar. His great background. Okay, so now I want to create little triangle. So I'm going to take my pen tool, and I'm just going to easily just with my fill as black and stroke as zero. Just create a little triangle. Just click. I'm holding shift again so that it creates a new point directly below the initial point and just fill that triangle. So now if I take my selection tool V, I can actually center it to this circle by selecting both hitting this horizontal center and then the vertical center. And now just make sure that this is centered with our player and let's zoom out and see what we have. So that's a pretty darn good player, I must say. So that's a little bit more advanced for using the shape tool. If you have any questions about using the shape tool, please let me know. But as always, I think the best thing to do is just play around with it. Try creating some custom shapes using the pen tool and just have fun with it. The next lesson will be covering some more advanced features within our timeline, including adding our background and playing with opacity. 9. Adjusting Layers with Scale, Rotation, Opacity: Hey there. Welcome to another video in the course about diving into after effects. Today we're talking a little bit more about the timeline and the different properties. We can adjust for each layer. And first we're going to use our Swiss background as an image to add to our title card, similar to what I've done here. So if I go to my talent card and then click this Swiss image and drag it onto my composition, I couldn't just leave it like that or under that and just drag it down to the timeline beneath our white solid. So you see how I have sort of a faded look here. We want that same effect, but I can't select my white solid yet Teoh change how it that looks until I unlock it. So, as I said before, there are different properties for each of these layers, and you can get to all of them by twirling down these little triangles to get to the different menus. So the transform properties that we have for each layer our anchor point position, scale, rotation and opacity. So for opacity, we want to drop the opacity of the white solid so that it shows the background image a little bit. So something like 75. But we can go into the different layer properties for any of these layers. So say, for example, for the video school online text. We want to rotate it. Let's just hit that are on your keyboard, or you can go through it and drop down these different menus. But I prefer just using the hot keys and hitting our to bring up rotation, and we can rotate, so it's rotating from the center of the text. I'm just going to undo that. What if we want it to rotate from over here where the V is so this is similar to if you've worked in different video editing platforms, they have each layer has a an anchor point to change the anchor point. We have this pan behind or anchor point tool right here. If we select this and let's zoom in on our text over here. So first, let's take our zoom tool. Zoom in. Now let's take the pan behind Tool. You will see this little icon right here. It looks like a little circle with four lines coming out for it. This is the anchor point. This is where the text is anchored to. So if we move it over here to the bottom left and you will see what that means when we rotate it here. So now is rotating from that anchor point again. If we move it using the pan behind tool to the top middle, it rotates from that top middle. So depending on where you want it to rotate from, you can move that anger point. So I'm going to fit up to 100% so we can see our whole composition. Use my selection tool. Say we want our video school online text to be rotated a little bit like this. And then we can copy and paste this rotation to our other text so that it matches. So all these layer properties you can copy and paste, so just hits the rotation command CNN keyboard and then select your premium courses Text command V to paste. Now we can put it over here. That would be kind of cool, right? So that's rotation. You can, of course, changed the scale. So with text, you can change the skill by playing with the font size over here or you Kenbrell Upscale By pressing s, he could change the scale down here. So maybe we want this text to be a little bit bigger so people can see it. Some video school online Bring up the scale something like this A little bit better. Okay, so another thing to notice in your timeline and another hot key to remember is to select all command a select all your layers. And I usually just hit s once or twice so that it closes all the properties. One thing that you might want to do now is changed the scale of our video player. But if we go in and press s Teoh the video player bottom, for example, and scale it down Oh, it's gonna be really hard. We're going to have to line everything up and redo everything If we are trying to change the scale of this one way to fix this, there's many but one of them is parenting. So parenting is basically sticking two layers together so that whatever happens toe, one layer happens to the other. So if I select all of these layers and it doesn't really matter which ones But let's just make the player bottom be the one that everything is going to be stuck. Teoh. Let's select all the other layers in the video player. So just hit triangle holding shift down. I'm just going to click player outlined to select all those. Then you see this parent. Call him right here and just where it says none. Click that, and we want to change this to our player bottom layer. Another way to do this is take this little swirly icon for any of these ones that you have selected. Click it in, drag it to the layer that you want to be parented, too. So now if I select my player bottom, bring up the scale hitting s again. Remember, we can increase and decrease the scale of this new object that we created. I can rotate it by hitting our One thing you'll notice is that if you bring up opacity, it's not with Oh, it's with tea. And when you have parented objects, the opacity doesn't affect all of the layers. So if I drop the opacity, it only affects the layer that I am using that I have selected. So we want that gray bar to be a little bit more transparent. So I'm going to drop the opacity for this layer, something like 80. So those air the transformed properties. That's a little bit more about this timeline down here. If you continue with the future courses in the dive into after effects, Siri's will be covering a lot more down here because there's a lot more buttons, as you can see. But these really all have to do or mostly have to do with creating video creating motion within your graphics. And we're not doing that in this course. So for now, the main ones to know about are those transformed properties down here. Anchor point position, scale, rotation and opacity. 10. Thank You & What's Next: Hey there. So there you go. That's the intro to after effects that I wanted to give you. We covered all of the very basics that will help you create your own title card. So we're not adding any video motion or anything will do that in the next course. Right now, we just want you to create the layout of your title card in the next course will add some motion to it, so use the shape tools. Add some images, bringing your logo if you want to Had some text create something with your own brand or a brand of your choice. I just wanted to say Really, thank you so much for watching this course. I hope you learned a lot. I hope it was a good, well paced course and that you're excited about after effects because there's so much more that you can do with it. And this is really just the beginning. If you like this course, please leave a review. I would really appreciate that if you didn't like the course, you can still please leave a review or we would also appreciate if you emailed us message us and let us know what we can do to improve the course. So head over to video school online dot com. You can contact us. You can also find all of our other premium courses. Free books, free videos, free guides, free tutorials and lots more. So this is Philip Inner signing out for video school online dot com. I can't wait to see your projects posted to the course page and until next time, have a great day.