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Old March 20th, 2003, 10:56 PM   #1
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Newbie question about Aftereffects

What do you do with it? It took me a half hour to figure out how to open a video so I could apply effects. But even without applying any effects the video never plays in real time. It's the raw DV video with no effects what so ever and it gets 19fps on a P4 2.4ghz with 1GB ram.

The effects are allright but I can't see using many of them in a film.

Can anybody clue me in please?
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Old March 20th, 2003, 11:53 PM   #2
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Yep. It can play in real-time if you use the RAM preview. AE is the best 2D animation package out there. It also excells at effects and compositing. It lacks something like rotosplines but then again what is has works. I have used it mainly for compositing and effects. Now with the 3D camera and workspace you can do almost anything. I would recommend you look at Classroom in a Book series from Adobe it is by far the best book out there for general quick learning. Then from there I would look into some other books. What version do you own? If you have the PB then you can also do montion tracking and some other effects. You get Unlimited layers and options it is the best tool for creating animation out of still images.

Rob:D
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Old March 21st, 2003, 02:33 AM   #3
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Re: Newbie question about Aftereffects

<<<-- Originally posted by Michael S Scott : The effects are allright but I can't see using many of them in a film.

Can anybody clue me in please? -->>>

Working in AE isn't about opening a videoclip just to apply some cheesy affect over it, although no one would stop you from doing so. :)

It's about creating video imagery from several different formats.

As Rob mentioned, going the whole nine yards with the Production Bundle of AfterEffects brings some very useful additional tools like Motion Tracking and Particle Playground. To elaborate on Motion Tracking, one example is being able to take a video clip, specify a certain visual feature (ie, bird in sky), and have AE overlay a picture file (crosshairs) TRACKING that object in the video no matter where it moves. That's just a super-simple procedure. Other ways of using Motion Tracking can be very innovative... this is true of AE in general.

I've tried the Classroom-In-A-Book for AE, but hardly found it much better than AE's own user manual. The BEST and most eye-opening book for the beginner on the subject is Chris & Trish Meyer's "Creating Motion Graphics with AfterEffects" now in it's 2nd edition. Check out the sample pages & Table of Contents at Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...44/cartertg-20

Flipping through the book, you'll instantly start to realize that many of the "intangible" things you watch on TV or film can be (or have been) done with AfterEffects. One example is the opening sequences to many news shows.

I reach for AE often to do panning in still photos. It offers plenty of control many NLE programs can't match. The results are every bit as good as the photo panning effect seen on many PBS documentaries.

Having to describe AE to the uninitiated is a difficult task since it can do a wide-ranging list of things. Another book that's equally inspirational is the Meyers' follow-up book "After Effects In Production"

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...76/cartertg-20

Here, tutorials are created by their fellow industry pros to show how THEY use AE. The CD-ROMS in both the books contain some free & useful (two words that are rarely used in the same sentence) third-party plug-ins for AE.

HTH,
Carter
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Old March 21st, 2003, 09:08 AM   #4
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So those "COPS" episodes where they blur out the suspects marijuana leaf hat, and the blur follows wherever they are in the shot, that is an example?
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Old March 21st, 2003, 09:55 AM   #5
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Yes, as long as the hat doesn't change TOO dramatically throughout a segment, AE PB's Motion Tracker should be able to stick to it as if the suspect was WEARING the blur.

The example provided in the "AE in Production" tutorial has an SUV with a feature list pointing at 10 spots while the vehicle is in motion.

Otherwise, without the Production Bundle, it's possible to have a blur follow a path defined by keyframes.
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