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CINEMA 4D: Rendering Motion Graphics for After Effects demonstrates how to take a simple logo animation in CINEMA 4D and transform it into a compelling motion graphic with After Effects, incorporating two distinct visual styles. Starting with a prebuilt animation rendered from CINEMA 4D, author Rob Garrott employs industry-standard techniques, utilizing materials, lights, and the library of effects in After Effects, to enhance the project's look and feel. Exercise files accompany the course.
Once the type is hit and the animation is settled, we want to remind viewers to read what's important on the frame. In this case it's the type. We'll use a copy of the type layer and a track matte to create a glint or a shimmer of light on the face of the type. This will draw the viewer's eye up to the type without overwhelming the rest of the image. I'm inside of the MMM-001 composition and this is where all of our compositing is really coming together. And the Type Pass Pre layer that we have here is the affected layer that has the Shine effect on it. Now we're going to make a copy of this and delete the effects off of it so that we can use this as the basis for our glint.
First thing I am going to do is select that layer, hit Command+D or Ctrl+D on the keyboard, and now it's also got keyframes on it for Opacity. So if I hit the letter U on the keyboard, that reveals the Opacity keyframes, and I'm going to turn the stopwatch off and bring the Opacity of the layer back up to 100%. Now that makes our Shine effect really visible. We don't want the Shine effect anymore, so I'm going to delete it from the layer. That leaves us with just a plain old type layer. Now what we're going to be doing is using a moving track matte to create a shimmer of light that's going to pass right across the surface of this type.
In order to do that, we're going to use the layer that we have, but we're going to change the blending mode. Now, watch what happens when I change this blending mode from Normal to Add. Our type gets much brighter. Now, if I create a very slim matte with a very soft edge and use that as a track-matte for this brighter layer, it's going to give me the illusion of a light beam passing across the surface of the type. So I'm going to make a new solid layer, Command+Y or Ctrl+Y on the keyboard, and I'll call this layer Type Glint mask and hit OK on the keyboard, and now that gives me a solid layer and the color of the layer is important because we're going to be using this as a track matte.
So now I want to create a matte for this layer. And I'll use the Ellipse tool and I'm going to make a very long slender oval on this. So I'll drag it right down the center here. That's pretty good right about there. Now I want to soften up the edges of this oval. So I'll go to the Mask options and twirl that open and adjust the feathering. Let's start off with about 50. We want to use this as a mask for the layer, but it's not at the right angle. So I'm going to select the entire layer and use the Rotate tool, W on the keyboard, and rotate the whole layer around and I accidentally selected the particular.
You guys just saw a particular behavior in After Effects. I had the Type Glint mask layer selected, but when I clicked the mouse I didn't actually click on the layer; I clicked away from it and it selected the layer below it. So I'm going to undo. Command+Z or Ctrl+Z. I'm going to click the Type Glint mask layer again and this time when I click I'm going to select right inside the mask and then drag. That's going to allow me to rotate this whole layer. I'm going to put it at about there. It's at an angle compared to the type. You never want your glint to be exactly perpendicular to the letters.
I want it to travel at an angle across the face of the word, and so that's a pretty good angle for us right there. Now, what I need to do is to move this Type Glint mask down to just above my additive type layer. So let's twirl all these values closed, so we can get a little bit easier view of our Timeline,and I'll bring this down to just above the Type Pass Pre. And so when I do that, the Type Glint mask is now above that and I can set this to be a Track Matte for this Type Pass layer and this is the additive layer.
So if I go to the Track Matte options, and tell it to be an Alpha Matte "(Type Glint mask)", look what happens. I now have this slash of brightness across my type. And the cool thing is if I animate the position of this Type Glint mask, it's going to give the illusion that I have a beam of light passing across my type. So I'd like the beam of light to start around frame 108. That's a really nice sort of pause after the Shine effect has gone away and now our glint can draw the viewer's eye back up to the type again. So I'm going to scrub my Timeline to about frame 108.
Then I'll take this layer. I've still got my Rotation tool active so I'll go back to my Selection tool and take this layer and drag it to the left just off of the type. Now, I'm going to set a keyframe for Position. So if I select the layer and hit P on the keyboard and I'll set a Position keyframe for around frame 108, and then I'm going to move forward in time to frame 126 or so. 125. Let's go 126. And at this point in time I'm going to drag the layer across and that's going to set a new keyframe when I do.
And you can hold the Shift key down if you wanted to or I can just eyeball it. In this case an eyeball is just fine. So now when I get across there, I'm going to have a glint passing across my type. So I'm going to RAM preview this and take a look at what that glint looks like moving. So to start the RAM preview process I'm going to click on the RAM Preview button right here and how long this process takes depends entirely on the speed of your computer. Okay, so you can see from that RAM preview that the speed of the glint traveling across the type is really fast and that's going much quicker than I'd like.
So I'm going to adjust the keyframes to slow that glint down. So in order to do that, I'm going to take the first keyframe and drag it to the left, so I'll bring that back. I'll scrub through the Timeline. I think I want to have it right about here. So I'm going to drag that keyframe right over to that point in time. That's going to affect my RAM preview. Then the last keyframe, I'm going to just drag it to the right, to right about here, just before the push start happens. So I drag that over here. So now I'm going to do another RAM preview to check the speed.
But before I do, I'm going to change the resolution from Full to Half. That's going to give us a much faster RAM preview. The simple movement of that glint across the type adds a lot of production value and also helps draw our eye up to the type with a really simple effect.
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