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Recommend me some effects!

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Mark Wilde
Recommend me some effects!
on Oct 31, 2019 at 6:41:51 pm

As a relative beginner, I tend to follow instructions to get a certain effect for a specific project, but I like to learn AE by also focusing in one particular area to understand fully, so I can apply it without relying on tutorials.

After really digging down and understanding Text animators in depth and more recently 3D, i think it might now be time to start drilling down into an effect or two.

So I'd really love to hear what effects people think are the most versatile and useful in a number of different scenarios, and really which ones I need to prioritise in learning.

I'm kind of getting the idea that Fractal Noise seems to be quite a big deal, along with CC Particle World, and so I've made a start on learning these two but are there any others?


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Eric Santiago
Re: Recommend me some effects!
on Oct 31, 2019 at 6:49:41 pm

My fave is Stardust.
But you cant go wrong with some of the offers in aescripts.


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John Williams
Re: Recommend me some effects!
on Nov 1, 2019 at 10:38:24 am

As you've realised, there's literally loads of effects in After Effects, which ones you'll find the most helpful depends on the kind of work you do. Motion Graphics artists will use certain effects more while visual effects artist will you others more.

Here's a few in built effects i'd recommend:

Basics:
Gaussian Blur - accelerated general purpose blur
Lumetri Color - accelerated general purpose color correction tools
Stroke - Uses paths the create paint strokes, very useful for creating 'reveal' effects which is very useful for handwritten text animation.
Gradient Ramp - creates a blended gradient of two colors
Drop Shadow - simulates relief from background
Bevel Alpha - adds beveled edge to any image using it's edge
Glow - does what you'd expect (can look better combining two Glow effects with different radius amounts)
Linear wipe - simple transition that can be animated to wipe on/off any element without needing to use masks.
Corner Pin - Resizes and distorts layers based on the fore corners.
CC Sphere - creates a simulated 3D sphere that can be applied to any image or texture

More advanced:
Camera Lens Blur - advanced natural blur effect, can be used to create depth of field
Keylight - best tool for green and blue screen removal (best used as the preset with Key cleaner + Advanced Spill Suppressor)
Transform - Very useful way of adding additional tranformations to layers that may have keyframes on the layer transforms.
Turbulent displace - Distorts any image using a generated noise pattern
Liquify - Straight out of photoshop for distorting pixels using brush tools
Remove Grain - Degrain's noisy footage, can also be useful for smoothing skin
Timewarp - Allows retiming of footage (easier to use that the traditional 'Time Remapping') and adds Pixel Flow (aka Optical flow) to slowed down footage.
Particle World & Particle System - inbuilt particle generators. 'World' allows you to load in layers at the particle that is emitted.
Camera Tracker - 3D camera tracker, very easy and effective to use when tracking moving camera footage
Borix FX Mocha - Solid industry standard planar (surface) tracker, essential for tracking job After Effects can't manage natively.

I'd be interested to hear what others recommend and why?

John Williams

Soho Editors


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Mark Wilde
Re: Recommend me some effects!
on Nov 1, 2019 at 12:36:46 pm

Thats ace, thanks very much for taking the time to recommend.

Most of the Photoshop style effects I'm already familiar with and things like gradient ramps, CC Sphere etc I also know fairly well.

I guess some effects are more 'point and shoot' meaning they do one thing and it's just a case of messing around with settings. Kaleidoscope being a perfect example of this - pretty straightforward.

Be interested to hear other opinions...


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