Categories
Tech Tutorial

Motion Tracking in Adobe After Effects

CONTENTS: Watch Tutorial | Key Points | Custom Tracking in Kamua

https://player.vimeo.com/external/443057824.hd.mp4?s=f4defab843ee9e3c73ca43f7917099d70b56bab7&profile_id=175

Let’s face it, there’s a lot of great content being produced out there and it can be daunting to find ideas, let alone stand out from the crowd. Sometimes I watch Zach King’s videos with my jaw on the floor—questioning what I’m doing with my life. But there’s hope. Sites like Pinterest are a great resource for Motion Graphic ideas and concepts. So, if you ever find yourself struggling for ideas, go take a deep dive into a world of photo inspiration and get those creative cogs turning.

Let’s get tracking

Watch the tutorial below and take a deep dive with me into Motion Tracking and animating paths.

Tutorial Key Points

1. Track your footage:
• Select your footage in the timeline.
• Go to the Tracker panel and select Track motion.
• Place the Tracking box where you want After Effects to track the movement and adjust accordingly.
• Analyze forward.

2. Use a Null to parent all the assets you need tracking:
• Right-click on the timeline, select New and choose Null Object from the drop-down.
• In the Tracker panel choose Edit Target and select the Null. Click Apply and accept the X/Y dimensions.

3. Draw and Parent your shape layer:
• Select the Pen tool and start drawing out the shape you want. Trace over a reference image if it helps.
• Parent your shape layer to the Null. Simply grab the pick whip tool from your shape layer and drag it onto the Null layer.
• Adjust the positioning of the shape layer to where you want it.

4. Trim Paths
• From your shape layer drop-down menu, select Add in the Contents row and choose Trim Paths. This will help you animate your shape path.
• Under Trim Paths, make sure both the Start and End values are at 0.0%. Add a keyframe on Start from where you want the animation to begin and another where it should end.
• On that last keyframe for the Start value, increase it from 0.0% to 100%
• Playback and add additional keyframes to control the speed if needed.

5. Light to dark
• Use the pen tool to create a mask around the layer you want to go dark.
• In the mask options for that layer, increase the feather to soften the mask.
• Select Tint from your Effects panel and change the colour white to any colour you think works best for that shot.

Practice by playing

To get better with Motion Graphics is to allow yourself to play with ideas. Use the techniques from the tutorial to create something new, something weird and something simple. Some ideas work better than others but that’s all part of the game. The important thing is to get comfortable with the software and you only get there if you practice and play.

Custom Tracking in your browser

Motion Tracking is a very useful technique to use in After Effects. We also believe it’s extremely useful for video repurposing—so much, that we built our own Custom Tracking tool you can use in your browser. Yes, that’s right…in your browser.

https://player.vimeo.com/external/443331630.hd.mp4?s=a197348521522d3b292b4a7fc6d63d33b856e6d7&profile_id=169

Hey, why not try it out for yourself—just sign up on our home page and request access. Get ready to have your mind blown by how much time this powerful tool will save you. Check out this great guide to learn more about Custom Tracking.

Did you find this post helpful? Please drop us your thoughts in the comments below and consider subscribing to our YouTube channel for more helpful tips and tricks on how you can get more and better video done, faster.

About Us: Kamua is a technology startup headquartered in London with engineering operations in Bucharest. With Kamua you can cut, crop and repurpose videos faster, all in a browser, assisted by our AI.

Categories
Tutorial

How to Mask in Adobe After Effects

CONTENTS: Watch Tutorial | Key Points

https://player.vimeo.com/external/435115275.hd.mp4?s=21bf40d5ce3f3dbed84f461a8a99841a8931173e&profile_id=175

2020 was the year of virtual insanity. On-demand streaming skyrocketed, everyone wanted to Zoom and even Gordon Ramsey started dancing on TikTok. Yes, things got weird.

The world was officially on lockdown and ”bored in the house-bored in the house bored.” This was a great time to get creative! So, I decided to get some fresh air and do what every video editing Jedi does on their break…dance in the street to a Jamiroquai classic of course.

Let’s learn some masking

I created this video in After Effects, but you can do this in Premiere Pro or any other editing program you prefer. Please watch the tutorial below and follow along as we take a deep dive into all things nerdy.

Tutorial Key Points

1. Plan ahead: I believe this is a relatively easy technique for you to learn, even if you are just starting out in After Effects. However, take some time to really block out your shots. Get creative—have some interesting actions you can perform to make your video stand out from the rest. Editing really is easy the part.

2. Duplicate and Freeze: Once your footage is on the timeline, duplicate that layer (Ctrl+D for PC & Cmd+D for Mac). Right-click the duplicated layer on your desired frame, head up to ”Time” and select ”Freeze frame”

3. Pen and Zoom: The duplicated layer will now be frozen. It’s now time to put the work in my friend, this part will take some time. Head up to your tools, select the pen tool and start drawing a mask around your subject. Be sure to really zoom in for this. Use the hand tool/spacebar to help you navigate the screen.

4. Trim and Repeat: Once the mask has gone full circle, you should be able to see the original below it. Now, trim the duplicate layer from the point you want it to dissapear (Ctrl+Shift+D for PC & Cmd+Shift+D for Mac). Play back what you have so far and watch your progress. Make adjustments if need be & get ready to it all over again.

Always duplicate from your first layer (the unfrozen layer).

5. Mind the gaps: Make sure you also mask out the sections that reveal the unfrozen layer. Select the frozen layer again and draw another mask. This should automatically display as another colour. Click the drop-down on that layer to reveal the masks, head to the second mask, select the ”Add’ drop-down and choose ”Subtract”.

6. Change to square: The last thing I did to make it pop was change the aspect ratio of my final edit from 16:9 (1920×1080) to 1:1 (1080×1080). This allowed me to just keyframe the position of the video from left/right and even zoom in/out for that dolly motion effect. This is the secret to the magic! You can even add some fake camera shake on there—just play and have fun with it.

That’s it! Try it out and don’t be afraid to push it further: innovate, get creative. Please share with us what you come up with, we’d love to see it .

Did you find this post helpful? Please drop us your thoughts in the comments below and consider subscribing to our YouTube channel for more helpful tips and tricks on how you can get more and better video done, faster.

About Us: Kamua is a technology startup headquartered in London with engineering operations in Bucharest. With Kamua you can cut, crop and repurpose videos faster, all in a browser, assisted by our AI.