LIBRARY: Tutorials Reviews Interviews Editorials Features Business Authors RSS Feed

CE Pixel Sampler

CE Pixel Sampler
A CreativeCOW After Effects Video Tutorial


CreativeCOW presents CE Pixel Sampler--Video Training by Jerzy Drozda Jr

Jerzy Drozda Jerzy Drozda Jr
maltaannon.com, polygon-studio.com
Warsaw, Poland

©2007 Jerzy Drozda Jr and Creativecow.net. All rights reserved.

Article Focus:
In this video tutorial, Jerzy Drozda Jr (aka Maltaannon) demonstrates how you can simplify the keying process, trigger expression events to control layers of your choice, and even do an automatic collision detection. Possibilities are endless.

When I first started working with After Effects, I came across a difficult problem in which I didn't want to solve it by animating keyframes by hand. As usual, I applied expressions to the problem, but at the time, expressions didn't really solve it the way I wanted either.

Now, with the release of After Effects CS3, my vision has come to life. I have created the CustomEffects that utilize the new sampleImage expression. These CustomEffects have made my job easier and I hope that they'll help you as well.

Below you can download my preset package mentioned in the tutorial. This package includes:

  • PixelSampler (grab a color from a pixel or a range of pixels)
  • ColorSampler (compare two colors and see if they match)
  • ColorHSL (calculates hue, saturation, and lightness for use with expressions)
  • MatchingValues (compare any two values and see if they match)

This tutorial focuses on PixelSampler, but other CustomEffects are also mentioned. They are built so that people who don't like expressions could still take advantage of them.

Take ColorHSL for example. This converts RGB values to HSL. This can be easily done by using expressions, but using this CustomEffects simplifies the process by allowing to use the pickwip tool and point to one of the HSL values.

What are CustomEffects?

We all use presets. They are very powerful and handy to use, but sometimes, when there are many expression controls involved it starts to get very messy. And that’s where CustomEffects come in.

CustomEffects are standard presets but they look like and behave as standard plugins. After Effects needs to know the definition of the preset in order to interpret them correctly. Some time ago I've started to publish my heavily expression based presets as CustomEffects. Here is how you can install them manually:

  • Download Mac version of the package below.
  • Unpack it to a convenient place
  • Right click on the After Effects CS3 application name in your Application folder. choose 'Show Package Contents'
  • Navigate to the Resources folder and locate the PresetEffects.xml file. Make a backup copy of this file.
  • Click here to see a graphic of this procedure
  • Open PresetEffects.xml file in any text editor
  • Open the XML file provided in the package that you’ve downloaded in your text editor.
  • Copy&Paste its content into PresetEffects.xml, just above the last line of the file. Save the file. When it says, this is a read only file, do you want to overwrite, choose yes.
  • Navigate to the Presets folder just inside the AE CS3 folder, create a folder called Polygon Studios and drag the .ffx files you downloaded into that folder.
  • Restart After Effects

The mac version must be installed manually at this time. The windows version needs an installer. Click here to get it.

Windows:

Click to download project files
Mac:

Click to download project files



Video Tutorial



Feel free to post any questions on the After Effects Forum at CreativeCOW.net.

Have fun!








If you found this page from a direct link, please visit our forums or read other articles at CreativeCOW.net





Comments

Re: CE Pixel Sampler
by Alexis Gutiérrez Cotero
OMG!, i want that tool!! AWSEOME!! Thanks dude, you are changing the world :P


Related Articles / Tutorials:
Adobe After Effects
After Effects Advanced Content-Aware Fill With Photoshop

After Effects Advanced Content-Aware Fill With Photoshop

In part three of his series on Adobe After Effects Content Aware Fill, filmmaker and After Effects artist Cody Pyper takes his deepest dive yet! Following requests from viewers in the series so far, Cody takes a closer look at how Adobe Photoshop can help you remove unwanted objects from your video footage in After Effects.


Cody Pyper
Adobe After Effects
Best Results with After Effects Content-Aware Fill: Reference Frames

Best Results with After Effects Content-Aware Fill: Reference Frames

Join filmmaker and After Effects artist Cody Pyper for a deep dive into how to get the absolute best results using the Content-Aware Fill tool in After Effects. Locked-down shots with simple backgrounds are one thing, but Cody shows the details of how to get fantastic results with complicated backgrounds and a moving camera using reference frames.


Cody Pyper
Adobe After Effects
Adobe After Effects Reverse Stabilization

Adobe After Effects Reverse Stabilization

You're going to be blown away by how you can power up your After Effects workflow with reverse stabilizing your footage! By separating your tracking from your compositing, you can focus on each step, and in addition, overcome the render order complexities when match moving elements and effects on a moving shot.


Roei Tzoref
Adobe After Effects
After Effects Content Aware Fill: When It Doesn't  Work

After Effects Content Aware Fill: When It Doesn't Work

There’s a new artificial intelligence-powered feature in Adobe After Effects called Content-Aware Fill that allows you to remove anything from your shots fairly easily! It's powerful, but if you’ve tried it you know that it doesn’t always work perfectly. So what do you do when it doesn’t work as well as you'd hoped? Filmmaker Cody Pyper is here to show what to try next!


Cody Pyper
Adobe After Effects
VFX in Adobe After Effects: An Artists Panel (NAB)

VFX in Adobe After Effects: An Artists Panel (NAB)

Join panelists Andrew Kramer of Video Copilot, Jayse Hansen, and Mary Poplin of Boris FX, along with moderator, Victoria Nece of Adobe, as they discuss the world of visual effects from an artist’s perspective.


Adobe Creative Cloud
Adobe After Effects
Scars, Tattoos & Digital Makeup: After Effects & Mocha Pro

Scars, Tattoos & Digital Makeup: After Effects & Mocha Pro

How do you add SCARS, TATTOOS or DIGITAL MAKEUP to a person's face? Learn how to use Mocha Pro's planar tracker and the Mesh Warp tool to insert a flat image/video on a (non flat) human face! Join VFX guru Tobias G from Surfaced Studio for a closer look!


Tobias G
Adobe After Effects
Compositing Secrets Everyone Can Use, Pt 5: Brightness

Compositing Secrets Everyone Can Use, Pt 5: Brightness

The first challenge to understanding the nature of brightness in compositing starts with remembering that we're not actually seeing color at all, but rather something of an illusion that appears to us as color! Join longtime VFX artist, editor, software developer, and business owner Simon Ubsdell for Part 5 of the best look behind the technology of compositing that you've ever seen, as he takes a look at the math behind brightness, and how to apply that to the compositing toolsets in your favorite editing, compositing, and color grading applications.

Tutorial
Simon Ubsdell
Adobe After Effects
60 Second Tutorial: Alien Invasion in Adobe After Effects

60 Second Tutorial: Alien Invasion in Adobe After Effects

Here's a fast, fun one! Sixty seconds to create and animate an alien using the 3D and Track Camera tools to animate your character in Adobe After Effects. Use the included files, or bring your own!

Tutorial
Adobe Creative Cloud
Adobe After Effects
What Are Adobe Motion Graphics Templates?

What Are Adobe Motion Graphics Templates?

A Motion Graphics Template, referred to as a MOGRT, is an animated sequence that is self-contained and can be used in Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe Premiere Rush and Adobe After Effects, combining graphics, text, audio and video files, as well as vector or still images (including logos), to create a still or animation that can then be customized by the MOGRT user. The result is a dynamic creative tool that provides design freedom and is consistent to its users across apps and devices. Reuse, share, and even sell them!


Rod Harlan
Adobe After Effects
Compositing Secrets Everyone Can Use Pt. 4 - Advanced Alphas

Compositing Secrets Everyone Can Use Pt. 4 - Advanced Alphas

When most people hear the words "alpha channels", they think "transparency", but that's not exactly accurate. The truth is more complex, and a quite bit more interesting! Join longtime VFX artist, editor, software developer, and business owner Simon Ubsdell for Part 4 of the best look behind the technology of compositing that you've ever seen, packed with practical advice for applying the secrets of alpha channels that's simply not possible before understanding these underlying principles. No matter which applications you're using for editing, compositing, or visual effects, this one is a must-see!

Tutorial
Simon Ubsdell
MORE
© 2020 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]