LIBRARY: Tutorials Reviews Interviews Editorials Features Business Authors RSS Feed

The Anvel: Motion Graphics Project Lessons for Photoshop and After Effects by Dean Velez

COW Library : Adobe After Effects : Jim Harvey : The Anvel: Motion Graphics Project Lessons for Photoshop and After Effects by Dean Velez
The Anvel: Motion Graphics Project Lessons for Photoshop and After Effects by Dean Velez
Creativecow.net Training Product Review

The Anvel...Motion Graphics Project Lessons for Photoshop and After Effects
Jim Harvey Jim Harvey
JHV Digital
New York USA

©Copyright 2005 Jim Harvey and Creativecow.net. All Rights Reserved.

Article Focus:
CreativeCOW leader Jim Harvey reviews The Anvel: Motion Graphics Project Lessons for Photoshop and After Effects by Dean Velez, and writes, "Dean Velez is no stranger to the CreativeCow community having contributed much of his knowledge to aspiring graphic artists who come to the Cow for guidance. Currently, he has put up a small sampling of his new offering, a course designed to help designers create complex and fresh work using Photoshop and After Effects."


Click on the graphic above for more information or to purchase this product.
I got an advance copy of the course recently and noticed something right away. Dean likes Layers. Layers and Layers of Layers! Now this may intimidate new users when they first open up one of Dean's project files, but hold on just a minute. Remember this, Dean has won 2 Emmy Awards and been nominated for 7 more. I think we should take some time to look into this!

One of the things that threw me at first was that there was no "narration" on the CD's. I guess I'm getting lazy or spoiled in my old age, but I was a little grumpy at first. "What am I supposed to do here?" I thought. Well the simple answer is "Read the PDF DUMMY!" Each project has an accompanying PDF file that has each and every step necessary to complete the project. So dust off those cheap reading glasses that you got at the pharmacy and open the PDF and follow along!

One of the most difficult things to do when preparing a tutorial is the "simple" process of just writing the instructions. If you doubt me, give it a try sometime. In this case Dean has gone to great lengths to put every step in the proper order to achieve the finished project. A nice touch is that each lesson has a complete .aep file that you can dissect as well as a QuickTime movie of the project as it should look. This is a great help when working thorough the projects just to see that you are on track.

The course is designed for AE 6.5 although if you are working with a version earlier than 6.5, you do so with the understanding that some of the effects or filters may not be available to you. This in and of itself isn't a real problem just something that you need to be aware of. Case in point, On CD's 1 - 5, I had some difficulty in getting the math to work (using version 6.0). Layers were ending up in the wrong place and I was getting a little frustrated. I knew that they were there; they just weren't winding up where they belonged. After talking with Dean, he told me that he found that importing a .psd file as cropped layers rather than a straight composition would be the workaround (not even a workaround, which gives the impression that there is a bug or real problem, more of an adjustment in procedure). Once I got that handled, the comps fell into place just like I knew what I was doing! Upcoming CD's will have that problem addressed so it's really a non-issue.

I mentioned that Dean likes layers and when you open the projects you'll see that by importing a .psd file with all its layers intact, you can come up with some very layer heavy comps. This is good and bad. It's good in that it allows you to have absolute freedom to tweak, adjust, and modify the comp to get exactly the look that you are shooting for. It's bad in that when you have a comp with 50 or 100 layers, you can get confused with the slightest moment of inattention. To combat the "Where the heck am I?" syndrome, Dean opts for the "shy the layer" technique. Once you finish working on your particular layer, turn the eyeball off and shy the layer. Set the program up to hide shy layers and you'll find that your workflow is just such a pleasure to deal with and you won't get lost in the process. I've worked with AE for quite a while and to be honest, never do I recall shying any layers of any of the comps that I've created over the years. No, I DIDN'T read the manual and I DIDN'T know that the little Kilroy guy was the "shy layer" Icon. Thanks Dean, for making me just a wee bit smarter than I was. The rest of you can send mocking email to me for my gaffe.

The printed "manual" that came with the program (a loose leaf binder with course outline/information) isn't necessary to utilize the course. It is simply a lesson plan that will help students plan and execute their work in a logical manner. Personally, I'd keep it closed and just go with the PDF files on the CD's. Instructors have a more in-depth syllabus that they can use if teaching a course with the ANVEL program. Dean is also planning to add a FAQ to his website (www.theanvel.com) that will help to answer some of the questions that will ultimately crop up when using the course.



CONCLUSION

After speaking to Dean and listening to what his intention is with this program, I can confidently state that you would be spending your money wisely if you invest in his program. Yes, there are some rough spots, but the knowledge that you will glean from this course will more than offset any minor syntax errors you may encounter. I know that Dean will be refining the program as time goes on so I'm leaving some room for improvement in my final COW rating, but rest assured, you will learn some very neat tricks with this course.

COW RATING 4 COWS






Please visit the forums or read other articles at Creativecow.net if you found this page from a direct link.



Related Articles / Tutorials:
Adobe After Effects
Imagineer mocha Pro 5 Plug-In for Adobe: An In Depth Review

Imagineer mocha Pro 5 Plug-In for Adobe: An In Depth Review

Imagineer mocha Pro 5 Plug-in for Adobe brings all the amazing features of the professional version of the mocha Planar Tracker directly into After Effects and Premiere Pro in the form of a plugin. In this in-depth review, After Effects tutorial guru Tobias Gleissenberger of Surfaced Studio will show you what you can do with this new plug-in, and discuss what he likes and doesn't like about the new update.

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
After Effects 2015.3 - My Favorite Features

After Effects 2015.3 - My Favorite Features

Learn why you should upgrade to After Effects CC 2015.3 - 13.8.1 - a close and detailed look at the latest release of After Effects (August 2016). Roei Tzoref will be focusing on his favorite features that set this release apart from previous versions: Performance, Queue in AME, Lumetri Color new features, and more.

Tutorial
Roei Tzoref
Adobe After Effects
Advanced Masking in Adobe After Effects

Advanced Masking in Adobe After Effects

Some of the coolest stuff you can do inside of Adobe After Effects is only possible once you unlock the power of masks. Join After Effects whiz Tobias Gleissenberger of Surfaced Studio to learn about mask animation and interpolation, using the variable width feathering tool, managing mask modes and ordering, and more.

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
Fixing Common After Effects Problems and Mistakes

Fixing Common After Effects Problems and Mistakes

Got problems using Adobe After Effects? Exported files too large, Expressions not working, mixing shapes and makes, modes/switches, selecting previews for layers vs. comps - Surfaced Studio's Tobias Gleissenberger shows you fast fixes for these and more!

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
mocha AE Planar Tracker for Absolute Beginners

mocha AE Planar Tracker for Absolute Beginners

Want to learn how to create advanced visual effects? Learn how to use mocha AE to track your shot and add advanced visual effects to live action footage inside Adobe After Effects. mocha can help you track shots that would be hard to track using traditional 2D point or feature trackers because it is a PLANAR TRACKER. A planar tracker uses planes and textures to track as opposed to points or groups of pixels. This allows the tracker to stay on track even if your shot contains motion blur or a very shallow depth of field. mocha AE comes included with Adobe After Effects and is available since CS3 and there is no reason for you not to use this awesome tool to make it easier for you to track your shot, replace screens or rotoscope!

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
How to Make After Effects Faster with Proxies

How to Make After Effects Faster with Proxies

Learn how to make Adobe After Effects faster by using PROXIES! A proxy is a placeholder that stands in place for a very large video file or image sequence in your project. You can easily create proxies for the large source files that you are using and After Effects will automatically link them to the item in your project panel.

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
Stabilize & Smooth: mocha 5 Plug-in for Adobe & Avid

Stabilize & Smooth: mocha 5 Plug-in for Adobe & Avid

Imagineer Systems and Boris FX product specialist Mary Poplin shows you how to stabilize with the new mocha Pro 5 plug-in inside of Avid Media Composer, Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects. This tutorial covers artistic stabilization, such as smoothing out camera movements or stabilizing around moving objects, completely locking down shots, and automatically replacing edge fill on planar backgrounds.

Tutorial
Mary Poplin
Adobe After Effects
Adobe After Effects Puppet Tool

Adobe After Effects Puppet Tool

Become a puppet master by learning how to use the Puppet Tool in Adobe After Effects! This intermediate-level tutorial from After Effects guru Tobias will show you how the Puppet Tool allows you to add joints and animations to bring life to any static image!

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
How to Spawn A Clone in Adobe After Effects

How to Spawn A Clone in Adobe After Effects

Want to learn how to create a cool clone spawn effect in Adobe After Effects? Follow along with After Effects whiz Tobias from Surfaced Studio in this exciting new visual effects tutorial that combines green screen using Keylight, CC Vector Blur, the Liquefy Effect, CC Particle World, and much more, delivered in Tobias' inimitable style!

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
Adobe After Effects
Creating A Flame on Your Finger with After Effects

Creating A Flame on Your Finger with After Effects

It is easy to do some motion tracking and attach a basic stock footage element of fire onto your hands, but there is a little bit of work involved if you actually want to make it look good. In this intermediate tutorial by After Effects expert Tobias, you'll see how to use a fire stock footage element to set your thumb on fire! There are lots of useful tricks for null objects, expressions, and more in this tutorial that will help you create all sorts of other cool visual effects -- or set even more things on fire!

Tutorial
Tobias Gleissenberger
MORE
© 2016 CreativeCOW.net All Rights Reserved
[TOP]