Creative COW SIGN IN :: SPONSORS :: ADVERTISING :: ABOUT US :: CONTACT US :: FAQ
Creative COW's LinkedIn GroupCreative COW's Facebook PageCreative COW on TwitterCreative COW's Google+ PageCreative COW on YouTube
LIBRARY:TutorialsVideo TutorialsReviewsInterviewsEditorialsFeaturesBusinessAuthorsRSS Feed

3D Layer Warp

COW Library : Adobe After Effects Tutorials : Jon Okerstrom : 3D Layer Warp
Share on Facebook
3D Layer Warp
A CreativeCOW Zaxwerks 3D Warp Tutorial

3D Layer Warp-- A CreativeCOW tutorial by Jon Okerstrom
Jon Okerstrom Jon Okerstrom,
Cedar Falls, Iowa, USA


©2007 Jon Okerstrom and Creativecow.net. All rights reserved.

Article Focus:
In this tutorial, CreativeCOW leader and TV news guy, Jon Okerstrom takes a look at 3D Layer Warp -- one of two new tools from Zaxwerks called 3D Warps. Follow along as Jon creates a paper airplane and shows other fun things you can do with this great new tool.

Paper Airplane movie More Information about 3d Layer Warp

Okay boys and girls, it's time to get twisted. Warped. Bent and rippled. We're not talking about mind-altering substances here people. We're talking about the newest, most intuitive and powerful tools for making After Effects layers anything but flat. Zaxwerks bundles two tools in a package called 3D Warps. The first, 3D Layer Warp, allows you to create some spectacular warps with any AE layer. These aren't your mother's page peels. The second, 3D Grid Warp, enables you to create animatable grids on the surface of the warped layer. The end results can be incredibly fluid and complex but as usual, the gang at Zaxwerks spent a great deal of time making the controls easy to understand and use. Zaxwerks released the package at NAB 2007 in Las Vegas. Let's take a closer look at the first half of this dynamic duo and explore what's possible. (Please note you can click on each image for a larger view.)

It's a bird... it's a plane... no, it's 3D Layer Warp!

Click to see larger image

When I first got my hands on this plug-in, I wanted to create something that would immediately test a variety of the software's features as well as my own creativity. I decided to turn an After Effects layer into a floppy piece of notebook paper that would transform itself into a paper airplane soaring through a virtual sky. Let's start with the fun part. It's time to get warped!

3D Layer Warp includes all of the tools you need to transform the paper into a plane. We'll build the basic shape first, then move on to making it look like paper later on. Begin by adding a comp-sized solid to your After Effects project. Apply the Zaxwerks 3D Layer Warp effect to it. Now, take a look at the effects control panel. Enable "show grid guide" to help you see exactly how changing the warp controls affects the layer. Now, let's work with the Warp 1 controls.



You'll find all kinds of keyframable Warp Style options for folding, bending, spherizing, twisting, rippling or otherwise manipulating the shape of the layer. Beyond that, you can control the amount of the warp, limit the portion of the layer to which it's applied and manipulate a variety of variables. I chose to bend the plane from the center along the Y axis to create the fuselage of my paper plane. I also reoriented the layer so it would be in "flying position."



I increased the amount of bend a bit more to create the tube in the image below. For the flaps on the wings, I turned to Warp 2 and 3 and bent the layer from the left and right sides along the Y axis. Being able to apply multiple animatable warps to the same layer is where the real magic happens!

Now that we have the basic shape, we can create the paper texture. You could use a scanned image but I chose to apply some noise and a simple grid to another After Effects layer which I put into a precomp. With that built, go to the color controls part of the 3D Layer Warp plug-in to choose the paper texture. You have some options for applying it.


Next, we can use a mask on the paper texture precomp to trim the leading edge of the wings to the shape we want. (I ended up animating the mask and prerendering a movie of the paper texture with an alpha channel thinking it may speed up rendering time.) You can also uncheck the "Show Grid Guide" option just above the Color Controls.


With the construction complete, it's time to animate some parameters and bring the layer to life. We'll work backwards in the timeline from the completed plane to the floppy paper drifting through the air. We'll work forward in the timeline to let the plane bank and respond to the virtual wind gusts. Being able to use comp lights and the comp camera for projects like this will give you lots of control and flexibility.



Here are links to my Zaxwerks 3D Warp plane movie and some other really fun test projects.

Learn to Fly
An example of Zaxwerks 3D Layer Warp in action with a little Artbeats footage thrown in for realism.

3D Warp Tornado
Animated warp and color shift to generate a tornado-like shape. Looping file.

Filmstrip Follows Warp
To get complicated movement easily, I put the filmstrip into a very wide comp and animated the filmstrip's position over time. I applied the precomp to the warp and made it semi transparent so you can see how it works.

Fourth of July Filmstrip
This one uses an Illustrator-based filmstrip with semi-transparent still photos, though movies could easily be mapped to each frame as well. Lots of very smooth motion. Timing the movements to music might be fun.

3D Warp Page Roll off Screen
Animate warp amount and x location to make the page roll off screen.


My hope is that this very brief project description and my test movies will get you thinking about what's possible with Zaxwerks 3D Layer Warp. It'll be incredibly useful for creating 3D background elements, transitions and just about anything you can imagine. Once you learn the basics, experimenting is a ton of fun. I've used other layer warping tools but based on first impressions, Zaxwerks 3D Layer Warp is in a class by itself. You might say the sky's the limit!

Next time, we'll explore Zaxwerks 3D Grid Warp.

Jon Okerstrom is a leader of the Zaxwerks forum at CreativeCow.net. He's a TV news guy who also enjoys freelance motion graphics work.

Learn more about Zaxwerks 3D Warps here.

Feel free to stop by the Zaxwerks forum and ask a question or comment about this tutorial.

---Jon Okerstrom


Please visit our forums and view other articles at CreativeCOW.net if you found this page from a direct link.


  View 1 Comment(s)

  Adobe After Effects Tutorials   •   Adobe After Effects Forum
Reply   Like  
Share on Facebook
Comments

Re: 3D Layer Warp
by Daniel Falkenhagen
Is there a project file available for this? Thanks


Related Articles / Tutorials:
Adobe After Effects
Zero VFX: Why Some Effects Are Better Unseen

Zero VFX: Why Some Effects Are Better Unseen

Kyle Andal and Gerard Andal, lead compositors at Zero VFX, bring invisible post-production magic to several films - including 2014 Academy Award-winning "American Hustle," in which the team helped transform 2013 Boston to 1978 New York - and also several commercial shots with mocha Pro.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Adobe After Effects
LightGrid Script and Demo Tutorial Part TWO with New Feature

LightGrid Script and Demo Tutorial Part TWO with New Feature
  Play Video
LightGrid Script creator Brian Charles demonstrates his newly modified After Effects script for rigging lights in grids and circles. The modified script with the new feature, which adds the ability to enable individual light colors through a checkbox in the effect control panel, is available as a free download in the Project Files folder.

Tutorial, Video Tutorial
Adobe After Effects
Green Screen Billboard Compositing

Green Screen Billboard Compositing

This After Effects tutorial demonstrates how to simulate augmented reality centered around a city billboard by compositing green screen footage and editing it into the scene.

Tutorial
Adobe After Effects
After Effects Handwriting Tutorial

After Effects Handwriting Tutorial

This tutorial will show you how to create an animation of a marker writing out a logo or a few words, followed by a slick reveal to an actual logo.

Tutorial
Adobe After Effects
LightGrid Script and Demo Tutorial

LightGrid Script and Demo Tutorial
  Play Video
LightGrid Script creator Brian Charles demonstrates his After Effects script for rigging lights in grids and circles. The script is available as a free download in the Project Files folder.

Tutorial, Video Tutorial
Adobe After Effects
mocha Tracks The Wolf of Wall Street

mocha Tracks The Wolf of Wall Street

With multiple VFX Oscars (Hugo and Titanic, plus a nomination for Apollo 13) plus a couple of Emmys (Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) under his belt, the most remarkable thing about Rob Legato's latest VFX extravaganza is that it doesn't appear to have any VFX at all! Martin Scorsese's The Wolf of Wall Street is a masterpiece of what has become known as invisible effects, and this article from our friends at Imagineer, highlighting Rob's work with mocha, is a real eye-opener.

Editorial, Feature
Adobe After Effects
Klip Collective Pushes Film Into New Spaces At Sundance

Klip Collective Pushes Film Into New Spaces At Sundance

Projection mapping installation relies on Adobe Creative Cloud tools to create stunning visuals for the Sundance Film Festival entry, "What's He Building in There."

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Adobe After Effects
Joseph Kosinski’s Film “Oblivion” Showcases Elegant Effects

Joseph Kosinski’s Film “Oblivion” Showcases Elegant Effects

World‐class user interface designers, graphic artists, and animators create crisp, timeless visual elements for the sci-fi film starring Tom Cruise and Morgan Freeman, Oblivion. Kosinski turned to Bradley G. Munkowitz (GMUNK), whom he'd previously worked with on Tron Legacy. As lead interface graphic designer, GMUNK then pulled a team together that included Interface Graphic Designers Joseph Chan (Chanimal) and Jake Sargeant, and Interface Animators Alexander Perry (AP), Navarro Parker (Nav), and David Lewandowski (D-Lew). They were happy to reunite to share how much fun they had creating the 2D effects for the film using an Adobe workflow.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Adobe After Effects
VFX & Motion Graphics on Star Trek: Into Darkness

VFX & Motion Graphics on Star Trek: Into Darkness

Andrew Kramer of Bad Robot and author/owner of the site Video Copilot was tapped to create more than 30 title sequences for the resurrection of the classic science fiction franchise with Star Trek: Into Darkness, while the OOOii team created stunning graphics and heads-up displays for the blockbuster film. OOOii CEO Kent Demaine, Lead Designer Jorge Almeida and Andrew Kramer shared their great experiences working on the latest seminal Star Trek film.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Adobe After Effects
Delivering Content for TV's Top Shows

Delivering Content for TV's Top Shows

Delivering content for some of television's top shows, including House of Lies, Grey's Anatomy, and, of course The Walking Dead, Stargate Studios continues to break the mold of how feature films, television series, electronic games, and commercials are generated. In this article, read how Adobe Creative Cloud and automation create a competitive edge for the iconic production studio, Stargate Studios.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
MORE


FORUMSTUTORIALSFEATURESVIDEOSPODCASTSEVENTSSERVICESNEWSLETTERNEWSBLOGS

Creative COW LinkedIn Group Creative COW Facebook Page Creative COW on Twitter
© 2014 CreativeCOW.net All rights are reserved. - Privacy Policy

[Top]