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After Effects tutorials: Elevate your motion skills

Use After Effects tools

Here are the best After Effects tutorials to help you find your way around the software's toolset, and unlock the special features that can help you become more productive and creative.

33. How to use the Roto Brush tool

Rotoscoping is a tedious task that involves tracing and isolating objects within an image. However, the Roto Brush tool in After Effects, which is similar to the Quick Selection tool in Photoshop, makes it much quicker and easier. In this video tutorial, Jason Boone explain how to use it.

34. Use the Puppet tools

After Effects tutorials are a great way to keep up with the latest new features, and here's a great example. The latest update of the software (2019) came with new puppet tools, including the Advanced and Bend puppet pins, and in this video, Jason Boone from Boone Loves Video shares his top tips for making the most of them in your projects.

35. Export comps to the Render Queue or Media Encoder

After Effects tutorials: illustration of woman with hairdrying

There are two ways to export compositions from After Effects: the Render Queue and Adobe Media Encoder. Each method has its benefits: In this short tutorial, Maria Corte explains how to use both.

36. Apply motion blur for smoother playback

After Effects tutorials: bird feeder

This After Effects tutorial by Chris Meyer explains how to apply the Pixel Motion Blur effect to avoid visual strobing, when playing back some footage and 3D renders at normal speed.

Work with other software

One of the big advantages of After Effects being part of the Adobe Creative Suite is that it works smoothly and efficiently with other creative tools. These After Effects tutorials will help you make the best of this interoperability.

37. Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects workflow

In the old days switching video clips between Premiere Pro and After Effects was very time consuming and unpractical. You had to render and export your edit from one application to import them in the other one. Now, though, dynamic Link allows different tools to work together in a way that's fast and user-friendly. One of many excellent After Effects tutorials from Cinecom, this video demonstrates how this can create a super-efficient workflow between Premiere Pro and After Effects, and other tools besides.

38. How to prepare Illustrator graphics for After Effects

After Effects tutorials: art deco graphics

When Adobe Illustrator files are passed across for animation that are not ready for After Effects, it causes a lot of confusion and friction between the illustrator and animator. Follow this checklist from Jeff Hurd to ensure your designs are ready for animation.

39. See what’s possible with Cinema 4D Lite

After Effects tutorials: desk illustration

Cinema 4D Lite is the 3D creation and animation software included with After Effects that makes it easy to integrate 3D elements directly inside your compositions. In this video tutorial, Timo Kuilder and Thanassis Pozantzis explain how to use the two tools together.

Create effects

After Effects isn't just for editing. Follow these After Effects tutorials and learn how to add spectacular and professional looking effects to your videos.

40. NBA Lights

In this video, filmmaker CM De La Vega explains how to recreate a cool neon outline effect, as made famous in a 2018 Christmas commercial for the NBA. We love After Effects tutorials that come with free project files, and this is one of them: you'll find all the files you need to take part here

41. Add special effects to a video

After Effects tutorials: UFO scene

Get to know the basics of motion graphics and video compositing techniques using After Effects CC in this series of After Effects tutorials. Over a course of six videos, you’ll become familiar with the workspace and how to import footage and other assets, and learn to combine elements in the scene using layers and nondestructive blend modes. 

42. Apply immersive effects

After Effects tutorials: gondala

In this After Effects tutorial by Charles Yeager, you'll discover how to stylise your 360/VR footage by applying or generating seamless effects – formatted specifically for equi-rectangular footage – without incurring unwanted artefacts.

43. Use masks to control effects

After Effects tutorials: bird

In this tutorial by Brian Maffitt, you'll learn how to limit an effect to a specific area using a mask on the layer without additional adjustment layers or track matte layers, and then change properties on a per-mask basis and save masks and effects as animation presets.

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Next page: Advanced After Effects tutorials