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how do I do this?

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James White
how do I do this?
on Feb 15, 2013 at 3:49:12 pm


i will try to explain what i am trying to do and it would be great if you guys could help me out, but please bear with me because i am new to this.

i want to shoot a video of a lined paper with some characters on it, something like this:

but i want the characters to seem to "come" to life from the paper, so i simply want them to jump out from the paper to real life.

the only problem is i am not sure how to do this and i cant draw to save my life!

the idea i have about doing this is maybe find a picture of character online then trace it in photoshop with the pen tool, (but i dont know how to animate it)

and then shoot a the video of an empty lined paper then use a motion tracker and after affects to composite, but i really don't know where to start from.

could you please give me some ideas? what should i start learning and where to learn it from?

thank you

PS: i have Adobe photoshop, flash, after effects, premiere, Illustrator plus Autodesk Softimage, 3ds max and maya.

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Joseph W. Bourke
Re: how do I do this?
on Feb 16, 2013 at 4:28:34 pm

James -

You could definitely do all of this is a combination of Illustrator, Photoshop, and After Effects, but if your experience is that limited, and you can't draw, you're asking for a world of frustration.

You can license a cartoon image at any number of websites - don't just grab it off the web - you're stealing someone else's hard work - unless they implicitely state that it's copyright free (not likely).

If you're up for it, an investment in CrazyTalk Animator:

can get you a lot of the way without drawing talent, but as with any of these packages, it's "Talent Not Included!". You've got to have, or develop, the skills necessary. Otherwise, just set yourself up as a middle man and broker other people's talents - lots of people do it (think ad agency).

Joe Bourke
Owner/Creative Director
Bourke Media

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James White
Re: how do I do this?
on Feb 16, 2013 at 5:04:08 pm

Thank you so much sir for your response

i definitely dont want to steal anybodys work, and i am not looking for a shortcut to do things, i just want to learn but i dont know where to start from

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Todd Kopriva
Re: how do I do this?
on Feb 17, 2013 at 6:25:02 am

Start here to learn After Effects:

Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
After Effects quality engineering
After Effects team blog

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Stephen Smith
Re: how do I do this?
on Feb 18, 2013 at 3:33:31 pm

If you can separate the illustration into pieces you can animate them. For example, it you could separate the hand from the arm and make the arm two parts you can link them together and animate the whole arm or the individual pieces. It is really powerful what AE can do. Take a look at this book trailer where I animated drawings. You'll need to learn about the Anchor point, linking and the position and rotation. Hope this helps and best of luck.

Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out my Motion Training DVD

Check out my Vimeo page

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