Adobe After Effects CS6
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Adobe After Effects CS6

Learn the basic fundamentals of producing great motion graphics with Adobe After Effects CS6
4.0 (2 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
27 students enrolled
Created by Peachpit Press
Last updated 4/2013
Price: $50
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • 10 hours on-demand video
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • To introduce viewers to the powerful features and tools in Adobe After Effects CS6
  • To teach users to create stunning motion graphics in After Effects
View Curriculum
  • Adobe After Effects CS6

This innovative product from Adobe Press combines interactive video and a full--color printed reference to teach the fundamentals of Adobe After Effects CS6. Experienced instructors Todd Kopriva and Angie Taylor present 10 hours of high quality HD video, complete with lesson files. This course will not only show you the basics of After Effects, it also teaches you what you'll need to know to take your skills to the next level. The presenters will give you an overview of the workflow and the user interface, and then you will learn how to bring assets into After Effects. They'll explain how to configure After Effects for optimum performance, focusing on the global performance cache and persistent disk cache features added in After Effects CS6. You’ll learn a range of compositing features, including the new variable-width masks and 3D camera tracker features introduced in After Effects CS6, as well as basic masking and color keying. You will discover how to troubleshoot and avoid common problems, and then how to create finished movie files.

Who is the target audience?
  • Users who want to learn After Effects
  • Users who are curious about motion graphics
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Curriculum For This Course
83 Lectures
Introducing After Effects CS6
5 Lectures 33:11
Adobe After Effects is a motion graphics application that allows users to animate, alter, and composite media and add effects both in 2D and 3D environments. In this video we'll explore some of the history of After Effects, looking at the various iterations that have led up to the current CS6 version and discussing what has changed (and what hasn't).
Preview 09:09

In this video you'll get a quick introduction to the course and a sense of what you can expect as you proceed through the lessons.
Preview 01:32

There are lots of new and improved features in After Effects CS6, and in this video you'll be introduced to some of the most important. You'll get a look at the new frame caching system, the 3D Camera Tracker and Ray-traced 3D Renderer, Fast Draft mode, and more.
What's New in After Effects CS6

This video teaches you how to deal with common alerts that may pop up in the form of dialog boxes and error messages. These warnings are helpful and useful if you take time to understand them, so we'll discuss exactly what they mean and how to deal with them. You'll also learn why you sometimes can't access menu items and how to overcome these issues.
Don't Worry, It's Only a Dialog Box

In this video, you'll see how the various pieces of the After Effects workflow fit together and learn the basic terms that will be used throughout this course.
Basic Workflow and Terminology Overview
Interface Tour
8 Lectures 51:51
In this video, you'll learn the basic controls in the Project panel that let you manage footage items and see how the Flowchart panel can be used to get an overview of the connections between compositions and footage items.
The Project Panel and Flowchart Panel

The Composition panel provides many controls for viewing and assembling compositions, and the Layer panel provides similar controls for working with one layer at a time. In this lesson, you'll learn what each of these controls does and how to use each get the right view of your work. You'll also learn the controls for using masks, effects, and paint tools in the Layer panel.
The Composition Panel and the Layer Panel

In this video you'll learn the basic controls in the Timeline panel for managing, viewing, and modifying layers and their properties. You'll also see how to show and hide columns in the Timeline panel and enable layer and composition switches.
The Timeline Panel

There are many ways to play and preview portions of your movies as you work. In this lesson, you'll learn the basic controls in the Preview panel for playing and previewing compositions, as well as the difference between RAM previews and standard (Spacebar) previews.
The Preview Panel

After Effects comes with hundreds of effects and animation presets. In this video, you'll learn how to use the Effects & Presets panel and Adobe Bridge to browse, apply, and preview effects and animation presets. You'll also see how to view and save animation presets and effects in the Effect Controls panel.
The Effects & Presets Panel, Bridge, and the Effect Controls Panel

Colors are represented as red, green, and blue channels, and there's an additional channel that defines transparency – the alpha channel. In this video, you'll see how to control the way the information about these channels is displayed. You'll also learn how to pick a color in various contexts and change the color bit depth to remove banding and increase precision.
Colors, Channels, and Color Bit Depth

Getting After Effects set up to suit your working style, computer system, and project needs is crucial. In this lesson you'll learn how to change preference settings, including keyboard shortcuts.
Modifying Preferences and Keyboard Shortcuts

After Effects offers you lots of ways to configure the interface to suit your needs. In this video you'll see how to change the arrangement, size, and visibility of panels; choose a preset workspace; create a workspace of your own and save it with a custom name; and reset a workspace to its default state.
Configuring the User Interface
Creating Compositions and Layers
5 Lectures 38:57
In this lesson, you'll learn how to create a composition and set composition settings manually, or create a composition that automatically matches the settings of a footage item.
Creating Compositions and Changing Composition Settings

Did you know that you can create footage from absolutely nothing in After Effects? That's right, you don't need to have anything except these tutorials and a bit of creative flair. In this video you'll learn how to use the Character panel to create and format text directly in After Effects.
Creating Text with the Character Panel

In this lesson you'll see how you can use the Paragraph panel to apply professional typographic formatting to your text layers and prepare them for animation.
Controlling Blocks of Text with the Paragraph Panel

After Effects allows you to create vector shape layers right inside the application without having to use any other software to prepare the files. This video takes you through the basics and shows you how to use the extensive controls in the Composition panel and the Timeline panel to create organic shapes and patterns for your creations.
Creating Shape Layers

Sometimes you just need to create a plain old layer to apply effects to. Solids are just right for this purpose, and for lots of other uses in After Effects. This video shows you how to create solid-color layers and walks you through some of their uses.
Working with Solids
Importing Footage
4 Lectures 20:58
Before you can do anything with your source files, you need to get them into After Effects. In this lesson you'll learn how to import files, create a folder, and import footage items into a folder. We'll also look at using Adobe Bridge to browse, preview, and import movies. You'll learn about codecs and containers and how to determine if your movie files are supported for import by After Effects.
Importing Movies

Most high-end visual effects work is done using image sequences rather than movie files, and most motion graphics projects require the use of still images as sources. In this video you'll learn how to import a numbered series of still images as a still-image sequence and use it as a single footage item. You'll also see how to change footage interpretation settings so that the still-image sequence has the desired frame rate and learn best practices for preparing still images before importing them.
Importing Still Images and Image Sequences

You can import layered image files from Photoshop and Illustrator and preserve the layers for individual animation. In this lesson you'll learn how to preserve layers and how to prepare images before importing them to make animation most efficient. We'll also look at importing Photoshop files and Illustrator files as footage items, with layers merged into a single image.
Importing Photoshop and Illustrator Files

Reusing elements from other After Effects projects or collaborating with other artists is easy when you import one project into another. In this video you'll learn how to import one project into another and how to only keep the parts that you need. You'll also learn how to import projects from Final Cut Pro and Premiere Pro.
Importing Projects
Interpreting and Managing Footage
4 Lectures 24:01
When files are imported into After Effects, it makes informed guesses about some characteristics of those files. Sometimes it gets things wrong, though. In this video, you'll learn how to change how a single footage item is interpreted using the Interpret Footage dialog box; copy and paste footage interpretation settings from one footage item to several others; and modify the rules used for interpretation so that a particular type of footage is always interpreted as you specify.
Interpreting Footage Manually and Automatically

If After Effects misinterprets field order, or if you don't tell it to separate fields, the result can look rather ugly. In this video you'll learn about fields in interlaced video and see how to separate fields before working with a footage item in a composition.
Fields and Interlacing

Different video devices record and play video with different pixel aspect ratios. In this lesson, you'll learn how to change the interpretation settings to assign the correct pixel aspect ratio to a footage item and change the composition settings to determine the pixel aspect ratio for a movie.
Pixel Aspect Ratios

You often only need a piece of a footage item in a given composition. In this video you'll learn how to trim footage items so that layers based on them contain only specified frames, and how to trim, extend, and slip-edit layers in a composition.
Trimming Footage and Layers
Animation Basics
3 Lectures 23:10
Many of the terms used in After Effects come from traditional animation. This lesson will explain terms like "keyframe" and "tweening" and how they relate to the work you do in After Effects. You'll also learn about the five basic properties of every layer in After Effects and how to animate them.
Animating Transform Properties

The paths your layers travel on are determined by Bézier-style curves that you may be familiar with from Photoshop or Illustrator. In this lesson you'll learn how you can change the shape of these paths, move them, and even copy and paste them to other layers. You'll also see how easy it is to select and move keyframes in the Composition panel..
Working with Motion Paths

The Motion Sketch panel is every animator's best friend. In this video you'll become familiar with it and learn about possible pitfalls before they happen. You'll also see how you can use the Smoother to smooth out complicated motion paths created by Motion Sketch.
Using Motion Sketch to Record Motion
Fine-Tuning Animation
5 Lectures 47:15
In this lesson you'll see how to avoid the gotchas involved with panning and zooming, learning how to animate properties and control motion paths using the Layer panel to control a layer's anchor point property.
Working in the Layer Panel

In this video you'll see how to use an anchor point to determine what's central to your shot and how to use keyframes to create an anchor point animation.
Anchor Point Animation

There are several different keyframe types in After Effects and it's important to be aware of them. In this lesson you'll learn the difference between spatial and temporal animation and find out about the various flavors of keyframe that exist within each of these.
Keyframe Types

Keyframe assistants are there to do the boring, repetitive stuff that you don't want to get your hands dirty with: easing motion, reversing animations and keyframes, or creating exponentially scaled zooms. You'll learn about the most useful keyframe assistants in this video.
Keyframe Assistants

The Graph Editor may seem intimidating but really it's a designer's best friend, allowing you to get a visual understanding of motion. In this video you'll learn about the different keyframe types available in After Effects and see how you can use the Graph Editor to create some cool animation tricks that would otherwise be difficult to achieve.
The Graph Editor
Animating Text Layers
4 Lectures 34:10
It's easy to import text from other Adobe applications into After Effects and animate it. This video takes things a step further by showing you how to convert Photoshop text layers into fully editable text in After Effects. You'll get some tips and tricks to help you figure this feature out and really make the most of it.
Importing Photoshop Text

Text animators offer a powerful and unique method for character animation in After Effects. In this tutorial you'll learn how you can create complex per-character animation with just a couple of keyframes.
Applying Animators

You can achieve some interesting effects by combining multiple animators. In this lesson you'll find out how to do it and will also be warned about the potential pitfalls involved.
Combining Animators

After Effects ships with lots of free animation presets. In this video you'll learn how to add extra properties to the free animation presets in order to customize them to better suit your needs. Once you've modified and created your own text animations, you can build up a library of them by saving them as text animation presets.
Animation Presets
Fun with Shape Layers
2 Lectures 13:02
You can achieve quite stunning effects very quickly and easily by animating shape layer properties. This video shows you how and suggests some cool ideas for creating and animating shape layers.
Ways to Create Shapes

In this video you'll see how text can be converted to shape layers in order to take advantage of their cleverly addictive shape operator properties. Once you see what can be done with these you'll be converting yours too!
Shape Layers for Text Effects
Basic Compositing
6 Lectures 58:56
You can combine color and transparency information between a layer and the composite of layers beneath it using blending modes. In this video you'll learn how easy it is to experiment creatively with blending modes, including blending copies of a layer.
Blending Layers with Blending Modes

There are many ways to make all or part of a layer transparent and get one layer to show through another. In this video you'll learn about color channels and the invisible fourth channel that holds transparency information, the alpha channel.
Alpha Channels and Transparency

Masks are a crucial part of almost any compositing workflow. In this lesson you'll learn how to draw a rough mask using the Ellipse tool, use mask feathering to create a vignette, and use a mask as a path for an effect.
Isolating a Subject with a Mask

When someone has had the foresight to film a subject in front of a solid-color background, compositing work gets a lot easier. This video shows you how to use the Keylight effect to key out (make transparent) a solid-color background and use a garbage matte to isolate the area to be keyed.
Color Keying

Rotoscoping and motion tracking go very well together. In this lesson you'll learn how to apply motion tracking data to an adjustment layer and use rotoscoping on that adjustment layer to selectively perform color correction on a moving object. We'll also look at using the free-transform feature to modify an animated mask.
Motion Tracking and Rotoscoping

The new 3D Camera Tracker really is unbelievably easy to use and is helpful in many situations. In this video you'll see how it can be dragged onto a clip to automatically read the movement and angles of the camera used to shoot some aerial footage. We'll then use the tracking data to place some 3D text within the shot, making it appear as though it really exists within the scene.
The 3D Camera Tracker
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About the Instructor
Peachpit Press
4.5 Average rating
179 Reviews
2,300 Students
51 Courses
Books, eBooks and Videos for Creative People produces top-notch videos, books and ebooks on the latest in graphic design, Web design and development, digital photography, multimedia, video, and general computing. Our award-winning products are authored by the creative industry's top professionals and feature step-by-step explanations, timesaving techniques, savvy insider tips, and expert advice. Peachpit is the home of Peachpit Press, Adobe Press, Apple Certified and New Riders and is the publishing partner for The National Association of Photoshop Professionals (NAPP), and others.