After Effects CS5 Essential Training

with Chad Perkins
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After Effects CS5 Essential Training
Video duration: 0s 8h 39m Beginner


In After Effects CS5 Essential Training, author Chad Perkins discusses the basic tools, effects, and need-to-know techniques in Adobe After Effects CS5, the professional standard for motion graphics, compositing, and visual effects for video. The course provides an overview of the entire workflow, from import to export, as well as detailed coverage of each stage, including animating text and artwork, adding effects to compositions, working in 3D, and rendering and compressing footage. Exercise files are included with the course.

Topics include:
  • Understanding the After Effects workflow
  • Precomposing footage
  • Explaining the basics and beyond of animating
  • Creating glows, patterns, textures, and more with effects
  • Color correcting footage
  • Working with text
  • Manipulating video playback speed
  • Masking objects and shape layers
  • Removing backgrounds with keying
  • Compositing multiple pieces of footage
  • Integrating After Effects with the rest of the Creative Suite
After Effects


Hi! I'm Chad Perkins and welcome to After Effects CS5 Essential Training. In this training title, we're going to get familiar with Adobe After Effects CS5, the world standard for motion graphics, compositing, animation and visual effects. Now although After Effects is a very robust application, to say the least, we'll be starting from the ground up here, including an introductory project to help you feel comfortable with the application. I'll show you how to use the After Effects animation tools, especially the ever-popular Puppet tool, to breathe life into still images, allowing you to manipulate an object as if it were a puppet.

Then we'll explore effects, the core of the program. Effects allows you to easily create stuff like glows, blurs, lens flares or even a galaxy scene from scratch. We'll look at the concept of compositing, and we'll look at several features in After Effects that allow us to merge objects into the same scene. We'll also look at the powerful new Roto Brush tool, which allows you to simply paint away areas of an object that you'd like to get rid of. And of course, what After Effects training would be complete without digging into the world of 3D? We'll be looking at lights, cameras, shadows, depth-of-field, and other real world 3D concepts and how you can use them to create the ultimate realism in your scenes.

I'm excited to share with you After Effects CS5 Essential Training, so let's get to it.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about After Effects CS5 Essential Training .

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Q: In the "Creating a fireball" movie in Chapter 6, the author showed how to make a fireball. Unfortunately, it all centered around a blob layer that he made without showing how to make a blob layer. How does one go about creating a blob layer like the one used in the video?
A: To create a blob layer, make a shape layer using the Pen tool. Animate the anchor points over time to make it move. These concepts are reviewed in depth in Chapter 4, "Learning to Animate."
Q: In the Chapter 5 video "Understanding precomposing," the exercise file provided does not seem to match up with the file the instructor uses. My file does not include a "Biker Body" layer. Is there an error in the exercise file?
A: Unfortunately, the exercise file originally distributed for this chapter was incorrect. A new file was issued in February 2011. If you downloaded the exercise files prior to then, you can download the corrected file on the Exercise Files tab of the course page.
Q: How do I transition from one piece of animated type to another in After Effects?
A: There isn't an effect that can create these types of transitions. It's really a matter of animating the type and camera, using basic keyframing and positioning.
If you understand the basics of moving the anchor point of a type layer, animating the parameters of that layer (Scale, Rotation, Position, etc.) and then separately animating the camera around the type layers, you can achieve different types of transitions.  Check out the following videos for more information:

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