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After Effects Apprentice 11: 3D Space
Illustration by John Hersey

Multi-planing workaround in 2D


From:

After Effects Apprentice 11: 3D Space

with Chris Meyer and Trish Meyer

Video: Multi-planing workaround in 2D

The next subject I want to talk about with 3D is the concept of Multiplaning. To clean up my display, I've closed my previous comp. Since I'm going to show you two different ways of doing this, I'm going to select this composition and do Command+D on Mac, Ctrl+D on Windows to duplicate it. And I'll open up my duplicate to start out. What we have here are a wide variety of layers, representing shrubbery, different buildings, even clouds in the scene. And as we can see from the way these layers overlap, the shrubbery is closest to us, the skyscraper and the clouds are further away.
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  1. 4m 47s
    1. Welcome
      2m 47s
    2. Using the exercise files
      2m 0s
  2. 15m 12s
    1. Comparing 2D and 3D
      5m 30s
    2. Rotation in 3D
      4m 47s
    3. Keyframing in 3D
      4m 55s
  3. 15m 9s
    1. Multi-planing workaround in 2D
      3m 21s
    2. Using 3D views
      6m 45s
    3. Natural multi-planing in 3D
      5m 3s
  4. 13m 9s
    1. Keyframing a fly-in
      5m 24s
    2. Editing 3D motion paths
      5m 43s
    3. Auto-orienting a layer along its path
      2m 2s
  5. 1h 4m
    1. Adding a camera to a composition
      9m 0s
    2. Comparing camera presets
      2m 48s
    3. Using the camera tools with the active camera
      4m 48s
    4. Using the camera tools in the alternate views
      4m 50s
    5. 3D view options
      1m 58s
    6. Animating a 3D camera
      6m 20s
    7. Creating an orbit camera rig
      5m 42s
    8. Extending your camera rig
      4m 31s
    9. Auto-orientation with 3D cameras
      7m 33s
    10. Depth of field blur in CS5.5 and later
      5m 47s
    11. Controlling the focal plane in CS5.5 and later
      5m 12s
    12. Iris properties in CS5.5 and later
      6m 16s
  6. 29m 15s
    1. Creating a 3D light
      6m 35s
    2. Working with Point lights
      3m 20s
    3. Working with Spot lights
      3m 48s
    4. Creating shadows
      10m 13s
    5. The Light Falloff feature in After Effects CS5.5 and later
      5m 19s
  7. 48m 6s
    1. Enabling ray-traced 3D in CS6
      3m 26s
    2. Extrusions in CS6
      3m 39s
    3. Bevels in CS6
      5m 39s
    4. Bending layers in CS6
      5m 35s
    5. Transparency in CS6
      4m 20s
    6. Refraction in CS6
      4m 6s
    7. Targeting Surfaces in CS6
      3m 23s
    8. Reflections in CS6
      7m 35s
    9. Environment layers in CS6
      5m 40s
    10. Quality vs. speed in CS6
      4m 43s
  8. 11m 33s
    1. Quizzler challenge for CS6
      1m 42s
    2. Quizzler solution for CS6
      9m 51s
  9. 41m 6s
    1. Vanishing Point Exchange in Photoshop Extended
      9m 18s
    2. Vanishing Point Exchange in After Effects
      4m 38s
    3. Importing a 3D model into Photoshop Extended in CS5.5 and earlier
      9m 7s
    4. Creating 3D objects using Repoussé in CS5.5 and earlier
      9m 46s
    5. Live Photoshop 3D inside After Effects in CS5.5 and earlier
      8m 17s
  10. 20m 58s
    1. Introduction to dimensional stills
      3m 41s
    2. Cutting up the source image
      2m 25s
    3. Repairing the layers in Photoshop
      8m 26s
    4. Animating the resulting layers in After Effects
      6m 26s
  11. 25m 27s
    1. Rotation vs. orientation
      3m 15s
    2. Understanding the axis modes
      4m 4s
    3. Scaling issues in 3D
      4m 57s
    4. OpenGL acceleration in CS5 and earlier
      6m 23s
    5. Fast previews in CS6 and later
      6m 48s

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After Effects Apprentice 11: 3D Space
4h 49m Intermediate Oct 19, 2011 Updated Dec 06, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

This installment of the After Effects Apprentice series introduces 3D space in Adobe After Effects. Authors Chris and Trish Meyer highlight key design considerations for working in 3D and provide step-by-step instructions for enhancing a scene with 3D lights and cameras. The course explores integration between Photoshop and After Effects, including modeling 3D objects with Repoussé extrusions and creating dimensional still images, and offers tips on using the different Axis Modes and maintaining maximum quality in 3D. There's also a chapter dedicated to the ray-traced 3D renderer, introduced in After Effects CS6, which allows you to build 3D layers into your composites, with realistic motion blur, depth of field, and reflections.

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.

Topics include:
  • Keyframing motion paths in 3D
  • Managing multiple 3D views
  • Auto-orienting cameras along a path
  • Creating shadows
  • Understanding Vanishing Point Exchange
  • Importing a 3D model into Photoshop Extended
  • Scaling in 3D
  • OpenGL acceleration
Subjects:
Video Motion Graphics Visual Effects
Software:
After Effects
Authors:
Chris Meyer Trish Meyer

Multi-planing workaround in 2D

The next subject I want to talk about with 3D is the concept of Multiplaning. To clean up my display, I've closed my previous comp. Since I'm going to show you two different ways of doing this, I'm going to select this composition and do Command+D on Mac, Ctrl+D on Windows to duplicate it. And I'll open up my duplicate to start out. What we have here are a wide variety of layers, representing shrubbery, different buildings, even clouds in the scene. And as we can see from the way these layers overlap, the shrubbery is closest to us, the skyscraper and the clouds are further away.

Now, normally when you're driving down the street looking out the side window of your car, things close to you move by faster. Things further away, such as clouds in the distance, appear to move slower. This is a natural phenomenon in the real world. However, that's not the way things happen normally in a 2D composition in After Effects. I'm going to press Home to turn back to Time 0. I have all of these layers Parented to my Null Object so they all move in unison, and I'm going to press 0 on the numeric keypad to equip a quick RAM Preview.

Since all of these layers are tied to the Null, they're all moving at the same speed, and for reasons we just mentioned that's not realistic. Things closer should be moving faster, thing further away should be slower. Well, I already have the Null animating. I'll press U to reveal its keyframes, and in a 2D composition I could go about manually animating these layers at different speeds. I'll go back to the start and say, this tree and this house should be moving faster, because they are closer.

To make my life a little bit easier I'm going to go ahead and Parent that tree to this house. That means I only need to animate the house and the tree will come along for the ride. I'll press P for the house to reveal its Position, enable its keyframing, and say, okay, I need you to move faster, so I need you to start further over to the right, at the beginning of this animation, I'm going to press End, and say you need to move further over to the left when you end this animation. That way the house moves faster than my other layers.

And just look at one other example. I'm going to look my two clouds back here. I'm going to Parent one cloud to the other just to simplify things. Select the last cloud, P for Position. Make sure my Current Time Indicator is at the start, enable keyframing, and in this case the clouds don't move as much. So they need to start more towards the center, press End, and End closer to the center. And again, as I drag my Current Time Indicator, now I'm finally getting that Multiplaning look. With the house in front, the closest object is moving faster.

The object furthest away is moving slower. But you can quickly see how tedious this becomes. This still isn't very realistic, I need to do these intermediate buildings, I need to this further away buildings, it's a lot of work. Well, Multiplaning is something that just comes naturally in 3D space. And that's what I want to demonstrate to you in the next two movies.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about After Effects Apprentice 11: 3D Space.


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Q: This course was updated on 12/06/2012. What changed?
A: This was a more extensive update than the other After Effects Apprentice courses. We added three new movies to Chapter 4 that cover 3D camera features in versions CS5.5 and later, such as depth of field blur. We added a new chapter on the 3D ray-traced renderer in CS6, and another chapter featuring a Quizzler challenge for CS6. Lastly, we added a movie that shows our premium subscribers how to use the exercise files, and added new sets of exercise files designed for After Effects CS5.5 and After Effects CS6.
 
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