Join Ian Robinson for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating smooth camera animation, part of After Effects Guru: Animating Typography.
The key to creating smooth camera animation really has to do with choosing the right camera for the job. In this video, we're going to use the single node camera to actually create our animation, as we fly through our text once again. So if you look at our scene, we have our two type layers and nothing else going on. If we toggle our switches and modes, back to switches, you'll notice that we have 3-D enabled for both text layers. What I'd like to do is have the word, surf, slide in from one side, and seasons slide in from the other.
But also have both of those words slide into the scene from the top. So let's start by actually adding keyframes for surf and seasons. So I'll select both of those layers. Move my current time indicator to one second. And press Opt+P or Alt+P on Windows, to set the first keyframe for position. Now let's just move back to the beginning of the project. Select our surf layer. If we hover over the x-axis, we can go ahead and click and drag that off to the left side. And since we clicked and dragged on the axis, it's going to stay straight. Let's select layer two and do the same thing. Hover over the x-axis, and then click and drag off to the right. So now we have our text sliding into the scene, which is exactly what we want. But I want this move to happen from the top down, so let's go up under Layer, and choose New > Camera. Make sure you choose One-Node Camera for the kind of camera. When we click OK, now we have our camera in the scene. Let's just move it to the top of the layer hierarchy, just for organization's sake. Now with the camera selected, go ahead and press P to open up its position data. Lets move up or down on the y-axis, to move our text up out of the top of the scene. I'm going to go ahead and move my current time indicator back to frame zero. And add a key frame for position. Now let's move down to one second here, and just bring our text back into position. So now if we scrub through, you can see it looks like the text is actually sliding in, in two different dimensions and resolving. That's not quite what I was looking for, so let's go ahead and just select both the text position key frames, and just slide it down a little bit. So now, we have our text kind of sliding into the scene and then, just for the last few frames, we'll see it kind of slide in through the scene. There we go. So, that sort of works. Obviously, you don't have to have yours exactly like mine, but that's more along the lines of what I was thinking. Now, let's create a little bit more dynamic scene. Rather than just having the camera fly straight through the words, let's have it kind of do a barrel roll as it's going through. Since we're using a single mode camera, we don't have to worry about keyframing it's area of interest. All we have to do is just open up the different parameters for the camera, and go ahead and keyframe our rotation. For z rotation, let's add a keyframe. Now, I'm going to be roughly at two seconds, five frames, when I add my z rotation keyframe. And then let's move down to about four seconds, and we'll have it actually complete one full rotation. So notice the text is rotating beautifully, but we don't have our z move yet.
So let's go ahead and add a key frame for position. Making sure we're on frame 205. I'm just going to click the diamond button here to add a keyframe. And I'll press K to move down to the next keyframe. And we can just click and drag to the right on the z-axis, to go ahead and make sure that we're flying through the text accordingly. We've got kind of an interesting move where the text is sliding in, and stopping, and then we're actually zooming through the text and doing a barrel roll. Now all of this is achieved relatively quickly and easily, just because we actually used a one-node camera. I'm going to load up a RAM preview here, and you can see we've created a pretty dynamic animation. Now we could continue tweaking this animation by going into our keyframe editor and creating smooths, and eases, and actually breaking the dimensions apart. But I think that you understand what I'm going for. When you go to create smooth camera animation, just make sure you choose the right camera for the job.
This course was created by RHED Pixel. We're honored to host this content in our library.
- Exploring the emotions of animation
- Choosing type for legibility
- Creating a visual hierarchy
- Working with text animation presets
- Animating cameras
- Creating high-energy animations vs. subtle, smooth animations
- Animating multiple lines of type
Skill Level Intermediate
Q: Where is HyperNURBS in the latest version of CINEMA 4D Lite?
A: In CINEMA 4D Lite R16, released September 2014, they changed HyperNURBS to Subdivision Surface NURBS. The feature is still located in the same place.