Keyframing the camera
Video: Keyframing the cameraOur next client change is they felt that our camera shake was just too subtle. They couldn't even see it, to be honest. They like the idea there being a camera shake, kind of an earthquake feel as tension builds, so they are wondering if we can increase the amount of shake as we get closer to this final crescendo and lightning burst. We can do that. Let's go back to Main Comp 2. I'll press the Shift key to bring up my Comp mini navigator, go back to Comp 2, and you may remember we used an expression to wiggle the camera.
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This course pulls together the skills you've been learning in the previous After Effects Apprentice installments to create a real-world video promo. Trish leads you through building the artwork and components used in the final piece, and then Chris shows how to assemble these precompositions into a 3D world, timed to music. Along the way, Trish and Chris also share their thoughts as they design a video project, including unifying the overall look and handling change requests from clients.
The After Effects Apprentice videos on lynda.com were created by Trish and Chris Meyer and are designed to be used on their own and as a companion to their book After Effects Apprentice. We are honored to host these tutorials in the lynda.com library.
- Building a 3D world
- Working with layered Illustrator files
- Synchronizing to music
- Using text animation presets
- Rendering strategies
- Working with widescreen video, including 4:3 center cut and safe area considerations
Keyframing the camera
Our next client change is they felt that our camera shake was just too subtle. They couldn't even see it, to be honest. They like the idea there being a camera shake, kind of an earthquake feel as tension builds, so they are wondering if we can increase the amount of shake as we get closer to this final crescendo and lightning burst. We can do that. Let's go back to Main Comp 2. I'll press the Shift key to bring up my Comp mini navigator, go back to Comp 2, and you may remember we used an expression to wiggle the camera.
But we did have a very small amount, only 2 pixels. So the first thing we do want to do is increase that. Second, the client asked for it to ramp up over time. To do that we are going to need to use an expression control to give ourselves the user interface that we can keyframe. Now the problem with cameras and lights is you can't add effects to them, including expression controls. That's kind of a shame, because this is something that you'd want to do. So let's pick another layer to apply our controller to. We can create a new Null object, or I think I am just going to borrow this Null Parent since it already has some keyframes anyway.
It might give me some additional clues for timing. So I am going to pick a Null Parent, add Effect > Expression Controls > Slider Control. That's all I need to edit one parameter. I am going to select it and rename it camera shake amount. Then I am going to go down to my wiggle expression, carefully select just that 2 for the amount, then use the pick- whip to connect it to the slider. Not the name, but the slider for that effect. After Effects automatically wrote that in this comp is a layer called the Null Parent which has an effect called camera shake amount, use its slider.
I will press Enter. Okay, how shall I ramp this up? I think I'll start where the camera hits this position. So I'll enable keyframing with an amount of 0 and I want to hit a peak right here at the end when we have that final explosion, and let's pick a fairly large amount here, like maybe-- maybe as much as 40 or 50. Let's try 40 initially. We can always edit this later. I'll press 0 to initiate a RAM preview, and let's see how that works out.
RAM preview goes pretty fast through here. It will slow down when I have got a lot of motion blur, but that's okay. This gives me more time to study the animation and see if there is anything I need to change, anything else I want to do. I'll go ahead and crossfade after the preview is done, instead of making you wait. (video playing) There we go! There we go! I think that gets them what they wanted.
It starts off steady, but then it starts to build more and more tension and at the end of this transition you see that it is shaking quite a bit. I can ask them later in the next proof if they want even more shake, but this gets the idea across.
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