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After Effects Textures and Mattes – Animation Tutorial

Hi I’m Ben Marriott I make weekly motion design tutorials and this week I’m going to talk through how I use mattes and textures to create all the effects in that animation let’s begin in this video I’m going to show you how using some simple effects and combining them with looping textures and mattes in different ways can lead to some really cool results now this piece was made with three layers of composition this main layer here which combines the face and the helmets comp the helmets comp which contains this section which is pretty much the head the sparkles and the you know surrounding helmet area and this head comp is where the majority of a good animation stuff happening in here so let’s get stuck into this first so I’m using the preserve underlying transparency which is this column here to restrict everything to this pill shape that we’ve got going on in the middle which is the monkey’s head so this works a lot like a clipping mask in Illustrator now the very bottom I’ve got this head shaped layer and I’m going to solo that by clicking here so we can only see that layer and so I can better explain what’s going on and above that we have two visible layers we have wave 1 and we have wave 1 shadow now if we turn off our effect by clicking here we could see that wave 1 is just simply a rectangle and all this movement is happening by using the wave warp effects here if I switch off wave whop 2 you can see that the first wave walk just gives this you know slight wave sort of moving in a position and sort of effect and wave 2 is applied to just give a little more distortion to that wave and let it seem a little more natural and more chaotic Jake Bartlett has a fantastic tutorial where he goes in-depth on how to really push this wave warp effects to create awesome smoke and hair and all sorts of things and most importantly I’ve got this preserve underlying transparency selected which you’ll see in this column here and I ignored this for my first three years of using After Effects and that means that this layer only appears over already visible areas so in our case it’s a head layer so it’s kind of like an alpha matte for every layer that’s underneath it and if we turn it on and off you maybe get a clearer idea of what’s happening I’ve also got this wave shadow layer down here which is an exact duplicate of this layer above and we’ve just added a drop shadow effect and change the blending mode to dissolve if we switch it back to normal this is what it looks like got a nice smooth gradual gradient but if we change the blending mode back to dissolve we get this nice gritty and grainy effect similar to what I used in my grain shading tutorial now I’ve also got a bunch of shied layers here so let’s unshy those and reveal them all now let’s select the visibility of wave 2 and wave 2 shadow by soloing them here which is pretty much the same as this wave 1 and wave 1 shadow here except we’ve got some different colors applied with some fill effects this wavy bacon layer here is a video texture of these wavy lines looping in a sequence of four images of similar wavy lines and I’ve used a tint effect here to map the black and white colors to these blue and pink colors that we’ve got in our color palette and above that we’ve got a wave 2 matte which is essentially a duplicate of wave 2 and I’m using that as an alpha matte so this wavy bacon layer is using the preserve underlying transparencies so it doesn’t appear outside of the pill shape and we’ve got an alpha matte which means it’s only restricted to the shape of that wave layer 2 layer they could achieve this effect with a combination of alpha matte set mattes and pre comping but I find this method keeps it just a little more tidy and intuitive to adjust and above that we’ve got another three layers of waves and textures that just fill up our monkey’s head layer now above that we have these drippy comp layers so let’s add those and see what those look like so inside this is drippy one comp here we’ve got this hacci texture layer that’s happening here and at the bottom here I’m using it as a luma matte inverted of this drip 2 movie that we’ve got so here this is just this dripping effect and I made this by drawing it frame by frame on my iPad using the App Roughanimator which I think at the time of recording is the best animation app on on the iPad and after this drip animation finishes I’ve got another copy of this hacci pulse layer weather no alpha matte selective so that just takes up the whole screen now back in our monkeyhead layer we can see that we’ve got this drippy one comp and we’re using a luma matte for this composition called drip 2 matte and inside this comp we can see that we’ve got that same drip 2 movie file of this dripping animation and it’s got to start at a few seconds into the opposition so it’s a little offset from our original drippy 1 composition and that gives the appearance of a strip of that comp being visible and being erased by the same dripping animation coming up behind it now that may make zero sense as I’m realizing I’m trying to explain it so let me try and show what’s going on without this track map we have this hacci texture just rising up using this drip animation and above that we have the drip 2 matte so if we make that visible and scrub through we can see that that’s the same drip animation coming upwards but just a little bit behind so when we select luma matte we can see that it’s slightly just following that dripping animation and removing it as it goes then we could have a frame where we can see the start and the end of that trip animation if we move this drip matte forward and backwards you can see it reveals a bit more and a bit less so if you want it really thin you can leave it at this length and if you want that sort of strip to be a lot thicker pull this back a little and then we’ve got the same thing happening with duplicate comps just above and offset a few frames and then slightly colored differently so it gets sort of two sort of colors and waves of this matting dripping effect and that repeats every few seconds with these other layers here and I’ve got slightly different textures inside each of those and at the very top of this comp we have this head highlight and head shadow layer and the head shadow layer is just a blue shaped layer with a mask set to subtract and a feather set to 100 pixels and also the blending mode is dissolve so if we could a normal we can just see that’s you know just a feathered mask that we’ve got here I set that to the dissolve blending mode so we get this nice grain now you could also use a blur effect on the shape layer to get the same results of the feathering but I prefer for the mask to blowing because dinosaurs have feathers and dinosaurs dictate most of my decisions and then at the top we’ve got its head highlight which is essentially the same thing but with a lighter blue fill color on the top right here now let’s navigate up to our helmet comp above this so I’m going to do that by pressing tab and clicking on this helmet composition on the left over here and here we’ve got much few layers in this comp at the bottom we’ve got this helmet layer which is a pink shape layer just a circle we’ve got the helmet shading layer which is that same pink circle duplicated I’ve added a fill effect of a darker pink and done the same feathered mask and dissolved blending mode as well and then we’ve got these sparkle layers in red here which is just this star shape I’ve got I’ve got three times scaling up from 1 to 100 and then we’ve got our head comp here and we’ve got preserve underlying transparency so it only takes up the area defined by the Alpha channel of this circle layer here again here you could use an alpha mat or a little amount to achieve the same effect now back in our main comp we’ve just got a few more layers we’ve got the addition of that face composition here if we go inside we can see we’ve just got some shape layers making up this face the mouth has a bit of a subtle animation using the path property here I think you just just sort of change the shape ever so slightly and we’ve also got these eyes scaling up as well and we’ve got the blue ones scaling up and then the pink ones scaling up a few frames after and then repeating them both multiple multiple times so they’ll get this loop of the eyes expanding like consistently infinitely from the center back in our main comp here we’ve got this helmet shine layer which is the same marking dissolve feather trick that we’ve done before and we’ve got two adjustments layers here we just got the posterize time effect with the frame rate set to frames per second which just gives it a bit more of a traditional hand animated look as if it was animated on tools so there’s not as many frames and it doesn’t look as super smooth as you get with the 25 30 60 frames per second animation and I use a rather than 12 because is the standard in Australia but you can use 12 and it will pretty much have the same effect and then we’ve got an adjustment layer up here with our favourite turbulent displays effect with the size down to two pixels and that just gives a little bit of extra roughness around the edges here if i zoom in and flick it on and off you can see it gets from smooth to just a little bit rougher to give a bit of extra roughness to the edge of everything and finally and above everything we’ve got this looping texture here which is at this sort of white speckles sort of dot grain to everything and if you look inside that’s just four instances of this texture rotating in changing position now hopefully you can see how repeating some simple effects and then using mattes some interesting ways can create some really cool effects and drive a whole piece now as I said the project is available for download down in the description I’ve removed some of these textures that because I bought them from a different source and I can’t share those but everything else is in there for you to look around and dissect if you use anything that you’ve learnt in this tutorial please upload it and tag me at Ben_Marriott_on Instagram so I can share it my stories I can’t wait to see what you make please let me know down in the comments what else you’d like to see from this channel don’t forget to subscribe hit that Bell icon like comment share and like oh you’ve already liked like it again the well like it three times got to do an odd number I’ll see you next week

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