View Full Version : creating my first big effect

10-21-2004, 02:26 PM
Okay let's get this out of the way. I'm an advanced beginner AE user (have v 6.5).

The effect I would like to use takes place on, of all places, the Golden Gate Bridge. I have my two principle actors in a wide shot.

Now here's the effect. I need numbers and letters to scroll along random surfaces (posts, poles, pavement, curb). Very subtlely. This may sound like a matrix effect, and I guess it's similar, but this is a love story, and the numbers and letters need to be so subtle you're not even sure if you see them.

But I guess the most imporatant thing is having these numbers scroll across various surfaces. That sounds like the hard part.

Oh, the shot will likely be a still shot.

thanks, chris

10-21-2004, 03:25 PM
If the shot is still, my advice would be to perform a false 3D mapping in AE

1) define precisely where exactly you want to see te effect and how the surface is placed in the real (3D) world

2) make as many new black solids as you need to cover each surfaces independently (each layer must of course have same size/ ratio as the surface it cover)

3) precompose each of those layers individually and turn them 3D

4) In 3D, align each layer with the surface it must. It doesn't need to be perfect but try to be as accurate as possible. for rounded surfacec, use Bezier warp.

At this stage what you must have is a rought decal of your image based on the surfaces you need to be covered

5) In each Precomp, ad your text and numbers. If you want them random, use expressions or built-in AE presets. use like a 75% gray as type color. Then turn the visibility of you black layer off in your precomps

6) use Overlay or Soft light (or any that you like !) as your blendig mode for all Precomps and decrease opacity to 75% or so

You should get pretty much what you want. Results can differ upon how your images are looking so you may need to change the type color / Opacity...
You may also want to ad a sligh amout of blur to your type.

The only problem may be if you want types to go behind any sufaces (including cast !) so you may need to use some masks or to rotoscope some parts of your image.

3D mapping (actually it's 2D/5 here) is a cool technique that works so well in AE !


10-21-2004, 09:01 PM
whoa, Nico, thanks for the detailed explanation. I understand about 60% of it but I think I can push my way through the other 40. please keep an eye on this thread in case I run into any problems!

thanks again,

10-22-2004, 12:38 AM
yep, post here if you run into problems or have any question... i'm no teacher so...


10-22-2004, 07:31 AM
Great tutorial Nico... nicely done ;)

10-22-2004, 02:32 PM
Thanks Kai :)

I'm no great tutorial writer (and dont mean or want to be) but AE is basically what makes me eat these days so...


10-22-2004, 07:38 PM
ha your copy MAKES you eat? Mine usually keeps me from eating cause I forget to! ;)

Good to have you around.