After Effects Class at PhillyCam

After Effects Class at PhillyCam

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AE Class Spring 2016
AE Class Spring 2016
I had a wonderful experience teaching an introduction to After Effects at PhillyCam this past spring. The focus on the class was lower thirds and show intros commonly known in field as the “title sequence”.

A professional title sequence and lower third can make a big difference presenting a program that looks professionally done. Of course a good story, well lighted subjects, and great sound is far more important but the title sequence sometimes opens the story and can bring the viewer in or lose them before you start.

Working in After Effects can be intimidating. It was to me when I first looked at it. But once I got to know the major components of the program, I got an insatiable appetite to learn more. That is what I aimed to excite in the class at PhillyCam. Once I wasn’t as intimidated by the program I tried more stuff by looking up solutions on Youtube and Creative Cow.

We started out the class with a cloning project. This was aimed to excite what I call the “special effects” side of After Effects. This also introduces the concepts of layering, keyframing, and masking.

We then retreated to safer territory by reviewing some of the basics of keyframing and layering. We also introduced parenting.

We then developed a lower third using masking to animate the layers on and off the screen. Introducing composition nesting along the way.

We then created a simple title sequence adapting some of the same concepts learned to keyframe the lower thirds.

Finally we learned how to render composition out with an alpha channel so that the projects works in other editing programs such as Premier Pro or Final Cut Pro. We also learned how to export a targa sequence with an alpha channel to be used in a Broadcast Pix projects in the studio.

 

We took a group picture and did one last clone exercise at the end of class. I hope the students learn as much as I did teaching and preparing for the class. I enjoyed getting to know everyone in the class. They were all troupers! It was fascinating to watch as their eyes lite up when they learned something new after struggling with a concept or problem.  I hope to do the class again in September of 2016.

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