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After Effects - The next level!

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Matt DavisAfter Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 14, 2014 at 4:38:50 pm

Hello all!

I've been doing After Effects off and on since CS2 but more seriously in the past 4-5 years or so. Mainly self taught, I've gone through a couple of good books on it, ran through most of the Video Co-pilot tutorials as well as another good YouTube channel called "ECAbrams".

I wanted to take a course a couple of years back, figured I was a more than comfortable with the beginner stuff so I took "Advanced After Effects". Due to the timing and small class size, they offered me a one-on-one training session over one day instead of two which I was thrilled by. Turns out I could have almost taught the class. Honestly, by the end of the class he was running through the effects folder to show me what each one does, to kill time to the end of class. I did that the first day I launched the software!

He did a good job teaching the material, but I'd done lots of compositing before, I'd done motion tracking it went by fast and at the end I was still waiting for the "advanced" part. I picked up a few shortcuts and tips maybe, but nothing worthy of taking a whole course.

Anyway, in spite of this I still don't feel like I know even half of what there is to know about this software.

Can anyone recommend resources or websites for learning more advanced stuff?

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Dave LaRondeRe: After Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 14, 2014 at 6:05:29 pm

Do the AE equivalent of painting yourself into a corner and then trying to work your way out of it. Bite off more than you can chew, and rather than positing "how do I do this" questions here, go on a search to find the answers for yourself.


Have you gone through the excellent series of AE tutorials right here on the COW done by Andrew Devis? Hey, they may not be done in the most up-to-date AE version, but who the heck cares? They're still great, and worth your scrutiny.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA

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Ridley WalkerRe: After Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 14, 2014 at 7:45:35 pm

Do your interests incline to compositing and VFX? Or are you more interested in Motion Graphics and communication design?

fxphd has some terrific courses and instructors.

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Roland R. KahlenbergRe: After Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 16, 2014 at 3:47:43 am

Prior to signing up for a course, you should always check on the credentials of the trainer and the training provider. You should also always check on the syllabus. Then ask to see reference videos of what will be taught in the class.

I'm into my 15th year, training folks in AE. It's amazing why/how folks select an AE course. I oftentimes surmise that they actually spend more time deciding what to have for dinner. ;-)

AE has gotten so HUGE that the standard training supply of Basic, Intermediate and Advanced courses that are offered, are not able to empower users to meet industry demands. Workshops or Masterclasses are required to fill this void.

My post will of course be incomplete if I didn't plug one of my Advanced AE courses :-D. See the link in my sig line.

BTW, Digital Tutors seems to have a few advanced online classes. Lynda is so-so for advanced stuff. AndrewK's stuff is of course good but lacks a structured course syllabus/outline.

Latest AE Workshop - MoGraph Intensity - Shapes & Text

Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
& Adobe After Effects CS6 ACE/ACI

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Erik WaluskaRe: After Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 16, 2014 at 11:06:59 pm

Here's something Todd Kopriva posted a while back that may help as well:

Adobe TV

There's another book that I recommend:

If you read that document from beginning to end and follow the links in it, you'll know more than just about anyone about After Effects. It has links to hundreds of tutorials that I have personally vetted as being of the highest quality, and those links appear in context.

If you ask Chris & Trish Meyer or Mark Christiansen where they get their information, I promise you that they will tell you that they go to After Effects Help first. Most of it is written by Mark's technical editor (me).

Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated

Erik Waluska

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Tudor "Ted" JelescuRe: After Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 17, 2014 at 9:37:15 am

Trying to re-create Tutorials would be the direction I would go. AEtuts+ , the COW, Videocopilot and a bunch of others should provide you with plenty. The issue is more with what you want to get better at? AE can do a lot of things. Different plugins can offer tools that can enhance the software ( Trapcode/RED Giant , Mettle, Zaxwerks, Duik, various AEscripts - Newton, Plexus and the like). These have their own tutorials. After you have mastered the basics is a matter of exploring and pushing the limits.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist

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Matt DavisRe: After Effects - The next level!
by on Feb 17, 2014 at 2:54:28 pm

Thanks for all the great responses. Good advice that I will put to use.

What I've been doing is trying to come up with side projects on my own time that either push the boundaries of what I know how to do or at least are something that I've yet to actually do, even if I think I already have a good idea of how to do it.

These forums help too, trying to answer other people's questions challenges me and gives me ideas too, not to mention reading the answers from other great posters (some of whom I recognise in this thread too ha ha).

Thanks again.

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