Make Things Float in After Effects

3163157-4954188715-94811Have you ever wanted to be a mutant that is a master of telepathy? Of course you have, we all have. We all want to be able to make our dog levitate but how? Well, you learn how! You have to start somewhere and today, we’re starting with After Effects and this excellent video tutorial from finalcutqueen. Which is more of a tutorial on how to use the masking tool in adobe After Effects. The tutorial focuses on making a cup levitate. As an added awesome bonus, the footage is also available to download with this tutorial. So follow along and learn all things floaty.

The first thing you’ll need to do is remove the string from the cup footage, this is done using the AE tracking feature. Then you create a mask and attach it to the tracking points you just created. Sprinkle in a little magic and some fine tuning and you’ll have yourself a disappearing string trick.

The Masking Tool in all it’s Glory!

This tutorial will teach you a lot about some of the most basic but effective tools available in adobe After Effects. The masking tool is a tool that you will be coming back to time and time again. Along with learning how to use the masking tool, you’ll learn about scaling, mask feathers, motion blur compositing and more.

Finalcutqueen also talks about the original footage and how to capture the right footage. You can do most of what you need in post, but it really helps move the quality of your work along if the footage is of great quality.

The final piece of the masking puzzle is our old favorite, key frames! When you’re learning how to use the masking tools for video, it’s important to learn how to move that mask with your footage. How do you do that I hear you ask. You will need to use key frames to animate your mask. We’ll also call into action some of the other techniques we’ve learnt to make our masking look that little bit more special.

We also look at the things that will make your work stand out from the crowd. Like blurs, adding shadows and shadow masking. Adding shadows to a 3D environment in a 2D work space and working with opacity to get a life like look to your video.