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Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path

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Sharon Ling
Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path
on May 24, 2012 at 9:18:19 pm

Hello, this is my first time using After Effects.
I would like to animate a shipping path- a particle moving along a line, and leave a faint trail behind.

- drawing format:
adobe illustrator file
- the small dot (3 of them) i want to animate are in 3 separate layers.

Request from creative cow community:
- could u let me know which video tutorial is relevant to do learn this?

I have read this post: http://forums.creativecow.net/thread/202/878787
but i am too amateur to understand it immediately.

Thank you for your patience.

- Best regards, Sharon.


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John Cuevas
Re: Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path
on May 25, 2012 at 1:32:53 pm

I really suggest you start with Getting started with After Effects . After Effects isn't a program you want say "Hey I have a project, I'll do it in AE", there is a very steep learning curve with this program.

That being said, I understand that you might need to skip the learning and jump right in if you have a deadline, so takea look at this very simple Indiana Jones Style Map tutorial on youtube, it should get you pointed int he right direction. If after you watch it, you are still having problems, come back and we'll see what we can do to help you out.





.

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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Sharon Ling
Re: Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path
on May 25, 2012 at 2:20:50 pm

Hi Johnny,
Very helpful video, thank you.
i have just done an excercise with the video you posted, i am able to animate the red lines like in the map.

- In the video, the line is generated via 'write on' effect.

- If i have the lines/ paths already in illustrator, will i be able to export them into After Effects, then animate these lines, by applying keyframes & effects etc onto it?

Thanks for your patience!

Best,
Sharon.


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John Cuevas
Re: Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path
on May 25, 2012 at 4:53:42 pm

If i have the lines/ paths already in illustrator, will i be able to export them into After Effects, then animate these lines, by applying keyframes & effects etc onto it?

Yes. After Effects works great with Illustrator files, .AI file are perfect for bringing into AE because they are vector based.

From your experience I think this would be the easiest method(but there are many ways in AE to do create this effect).

Create your work in Illustrator(make sure the elements you want separated are on different layers). In AE, Import your graphic(cntl+i) and in the import dialogue choose "Import as comp" This will create a new composition of your graphic and keep all the layers separated.

Now on your line layer add the effect Generate -> Write-on. Turn on the brush position stopwatch and animate brush position. You may need to change Brush size & brush spacing. Finally change the "Paint Style" pull down to "Reveal Original Image" and that take care revealing your line.

Originally you mentioned some dots. So twirl down the line layer -> effects -> Write-on to access your Brush position keyframes. Click "Brush Position" and all your keyframes are highlighted. Copy them(cntl+c).

Now open up your Dot layer position property(Press "P"). Press the stop watch to turn on keyframes and paste the brush position keyframes(cntl+v) onto your dots position layer.

Most likely this didn't match your dot and line exactly since they probably started in different places. So press "shift+A" to open up the anchor point property and use the anchor point coordinates to line up your dot over the line you want to reveal.

I made a little example project that I hope clearly illustrates the techniques I described here. 4206_writeonexamplefolder.zip

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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Sharon Ling
Re: Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path
on Jun 3, 2012 at 8:50:30 am

Johnny, i am using your method & its working! Thank you... you are a life saver!

- Best, Sharon.


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John Cuevas
Re: Animating a small particle along a line drawing/ shipping path
on Jan 8, 2013 at 12:54:00 pm

Always happy to help.

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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