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After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path

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Veljko Golocorbin
After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:32:20 am
Last Edited By Veljko Golocorbin on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:46:50 am

Hey guys, so I want to make a trail of this book that's going to scale up from infinity and come swooping to the foreground. I can't use particles to create this kind of a solid shape and as you can see it's also a bit rotated. There's going to be a camera move involved as well and the book layer is 3D and moving in 3D.



I've tried copying the position keyframes of my book into the path field of a straight line shape but it's only 2D and I need it to be 3D like the book layer.



I think the whole effect should look like that "nike" logo trail coming from the book should basically extrude along the path of the book and then I taper off or disappear sort of like animating trim path start/end.


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Kalleheikki Kannisto
Re: After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 23, 2018 at 10:50:10 am

I'd go with a masked 3D shape layer with the full trail shape on it, revealing the shape as the box moves.

Kalleheikki Kannisto
Senior Graphic Designer


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Veljko Golocorbin
Re: After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 23, 2018 at 11:01:17 am

Hmm I think I know what you're thinking of but I still don't know how to create the actual trail shape. Is there a way to extrude a shape along the motion path of the book? I've tried so many different things but still no luck.


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Mark Whitney
Re: After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 23, 2018 at 9:51:53 pm

Sort of like this perhaps?







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Veljko Golocorbin
Re: After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 24, 2018 at 7:23:34 am

Hmm, I can't see how it's similar.. It doesn't show how to create a stroke from a motion path in 3d. Not sure if I'm missing something.


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Kalleheikki Kannisto
Re: After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 24, 2018 at 9:46:34 am

You're already half-way there, copying the motion path to a shape layer. You can draw the other side of the path, turn the shape layer into a 3D layer and then align the path as closely as you can to the motion.

Alternatively -- this should be easier and give you a more accurate result -- you can first draw the shape layer and then copy one edge of it for the motion path and align it to the shape layer. In fact, if you draw the shape in 2D view without a camera and create the motion path and align the two before turning them into 3D layers, you should be able to keep them perfectly aligned by parenting one to the other before doing any 3D transformations.

Kalleheikki Kannisto
Senior Graphic Designer


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Andrew Somers
Re: After Effects: Creating a trail from a motion path
on Sep 25, 2018 at 2:00:04 am

Try using ECHO, on a shape that is the width of the path you want to create (perhaps hidden behind the book.)

Andrew Somers
VFX & Title Supervisor
https://www.GeneralTitles.com


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