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Building the Animated Stroke in AE: Part 3 of 5

COW Library : Adobe After Effects Tutorials : Dean Velez : Building the Animated Stroke in AE: Part 3 of 5
Building the Animated Stroke in AE: Part 3 of 5
A CreativeCOW After Effects Tutorial


Building the Animated Stroke in AE: Part 3 of 5

Dean Velez Dean Velez
The Anvel Motion Graphics Courseware for After Effects
Atlanta, Georgia

©Dean Velez and CreativeCOW.net. All rights reserved.


Article Focus:

In this 5-part tutorial, Motion Graphics Trainer, Dean Velez explores creating complex backgrounds using a Photoshop still with the 3D properties of After Effects. We'll also create high end transitions using path tools and various effects as well as eye catching 2D animation using parented layers and resolving text using the track matte features. In lesson three, we'll build the animated stroke.

Movies: Stroke Transition Stroke Line Projects: Stroke Line Stroke Transition

PLEASE PREVIEW THE STROKETRANSITION.MOV ANIMATION BEFORE STARTING. Download the movies and project files from the pink bar above if you want to follow along instead of make your own.

Creating the Stroke Line


1. Create a new composition with the NTSC D1, 720x486 preset, set the duration to 14:00, name it step 1.

2. Select layer / new / solid 720 x 486 color black

3. Edit the solid layer so it begins at 1:00 and ends at 11:00 -- You will need to do this so that we have extra black footage for the stroke effect to begin and end on. If we didn't do this our line would pop in and out instead of writing in and out.

4. Go to the beginning of the layer

5. Switch the quality to best

6. Double click on the solid layer

7. Select the pen tool from the tools palette. The curve pen tool in 6.5 has changed slightly, make sure RotoBezier is Deselected if you're using 6.5.

AE 5.5 Tool Pallette AE 6.5 Tool Palette
AE 5.5 Tool Palette AE 6.5 Tool Palette

8. Create a straight path across the solid with 3 nodes in the middle (FIG 1)

Fig. 1

9. Select the curve pen tool from tools palette.


10. Drag the Curve tool on all nodes one at a time creating curved loops (FIG 2-6)

Fig. 2

Fig. 3

Fig. 4

Fig.5

Fig. 6

11. Set a key frame in the beginning for mask shape

12. Go to the end of the layer

13. Drag on all nodes with the curve pen tool one at a time creating different curved loops (FIG 7)
Since the curve pen tool in 6.5 has changed slightly, you might need to click on the node twice to create a new curve.


Fig. 7

14. Close the mask window

15. Turn off the view options for the mask on the composition window

16. Go to the beginning of the layer

17. Select effect / render / stroke

18. Set the brush size to 1.2, brush hardness to 100 and the spacing to 10

19. Set a key frame for the end setting IN 0 OUT 100

20. Set a keyframe for the start setting at 6:00 0 OUT 100

21. Select effect / blur&sharpen / fast blur set it to 1

22. Save file as stroke line

23. Render file as stroke line, premultiplied with no alpha. View movie by clicking here.

Creating The Stroke Transition


24. Import stroke line animation back into composition

25. Create a new composition set the duration to 3:15 name it render out

26. Drag stroke line animation into render out

27. Switch its quality to best

28. Select layer / time stretch and set its stretch factor to 25%. This will quicken the stroke but still keep the smoothness.

29. Select effect / time / echo

30. Set the number of echos to 90. This will grab 90 previous frames. If we had made our original render 3:15, we wouldn't be able to grab this many frames.

31. Set the starting intensity to .10 -- This will lighten the intensity of the line.

32. Select effect / stylize / glow

33. Set the threshold to 50, the glow radius to 25 and the glow intensity to 2

34. Select effect / blur&sharpen / fast blur set it to 1 or 2

35. Save file as stroke transition

36. Render file as stroke transition, premultiplied with no alpha. Click here to view movie.

Dean Velez copyright 2003, 2004

For more of Dean's tutorials, click on the logo to the right.



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Comments

Re: Building the Animated Stroke in AE: Part 3 of 5
by linda quinlan
This stroke effect looks really beautiful Dean. I would like to combine this effect with a animate hand writing. Does anyone know a tutorial that could create such an effect?
Cant' get this to work on a white background
by claire hedley
Hi

I LOVE this tutorial - fab effect. I'm trying to create the same effect but with coloured lines on a white background. I've managed to output stroke line showing my coloured line - that's fine. Puting it into my render out comp, it doesn't show. I suspect it's my glow settings, but I can't figure out what to change? All I see is white.

Can you help please?

Thanks
Building the Animated Stroke in AE: Part 3 of 5
by matt linden
hi,hope some1 can help me out here, i cant get the shade effect on my strokes like in the tut :(

the first part went smooth,but somehow my end result dont look like in the video.
i been looking/followed this tut several times now and im a bit clueless what to do to get the desired effect like in video.
can any1 help me plz.been dl file to see if there was somthing i did wrong ect but still the same.
is there somthing missing (like stated above) some animation or?

btw im a so called "newbie" so feel free to e-mail me or post here if u got any solution to my little prob :)


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