Parametric Shape vs Bezier Path

Andrew Pach
A free video tutorial from Andrew Pach
Engaged and Passionate PowerPoint & After Effects instructor
4.5 instructor rating • 23 courses • 235,701 students

Lecture description

This is an important first lesson in the After Effects Motion Graphic course which is about morphing shapes. Here I want to touch on the topic of parametric shapes and turning them (or rather using instead) into bezier paths. Paths are essential to the technique we will use so you must get familiar with them. Every vector item has it's paths.

Learn more from the full course

After Effects Basics - Morphing Shapes in After Effects

Learn After Effects motion graphic animation. After Effects CS6 and CC basics

02:26:26 of on-demand video • Updated August 2020

  • Create an After Effects Morphing Effect
  • Work properly with Paths in Shape Layers
  • Create, edit, keyframe, manipulate Paths
  • Learn to copy work between After Effects and Illustrator
English [Auto] Welcome welcome. I'm really glad you are joining me here. I see you are interested in motion graphics and you would like to learn something in After Effects. This will be the perfect opportunity for you. This lesson will be really fun because you'll learn something super super important. OK. Let's go ahead. I am already inside after effects. What a coincidence. And I'm using Adobe After Effects see a six that you can use. Of course the newer version which is s.c. I'll tell the differences if any occur. All right. I'm inside the program and I want to create a new composition. So we have a working area. I click on this little icon I see I have some weird parameters here. So I changed it to a full HD video. Turkey frames 12 seconds is all right and I am ready and set to work in this class. We will work with shape layers and their pads. I want to show you an important difference between bezier pads and between parametric shapes. Well this might sound difficult but it's really simple. Let me show you all the examples. Ok let us start working by selecting the rectangle tool and making a rectangle on the left side of the screen. We have a shape we're here with rectangle number one inside of its contents. I click away. So I will not have the shape layer selected because I want to create a new shape layer. I'll come a bit closer read my scroll wheel and I make a second rectangle on the right side by holding the left old key or Option key. If you are working on a Mac. Right we have two objects. And as you can notice we have shapely or two and shape layer one. Now you may ask Andrew what is the difference you create to shape layers and you only hit all or Option key on the right one which did not change anything. We have shapely one and shapely or two and they have the same structure in here. Well not exactly. Listen now the first one is a parametric shape. It has created a rectangle path. And as I open it I have the rectangle size the rectangle position the rectangle roundness and I can change each parameter separately while on the second layer we've created as I open the content rectangles we have a path not a rectangle path but a path. And as I click on it I have four points here which I can easily change by going to the panel. Let me for example select a path and I can change it up as I want. I can freestyle. I can change the shape. And what's most important for the entire course which is about morphing shapes is Can keyframe it with one keyframe so you can set the keyframe here. You can set the keyframe later and it can have another shape just by changing at this point while on the left side. So we have only a rectangle. And yeah we can change its size. You can change its position. We can change its roundness. Everything cool. We have more features than here but we are not allowed to use the path in here. And that path is essential to this entire animation we are going to create. If you are using Adobe After Effects CC which is the newest version you have a little trick to overcome that if you create a rectangle for example or another object and you forgot to hold the left hold key or the option key. You only right click here on the rectangle path and you will have an option to converted to bezier path. Once you had that automatically a path will appear and you are ready to go. Well and after effects see six you need to remember once you create this object you need to hold the left old key. So it ultimately will create that path instead of the parametric shape as I were telling before. It sounds just a little bit complicated. Parametric shape against bezier path but the only thing you want to remember that the parametric shape has its own parameters which you can change each one separately and the bezier path has one path which you can change with one keyframe and work from there. I have some product Feis prepared which we will work on for example a few social icons which are free to use. I of course attach them in of their resources. Let me go inside and paste the Twitter icon here. I'll put the Twitter icon inside of the composition. All right. And I have the icon but let's say for example I would like to change something here. Well right now it's just an image inside of aftereffects. But since this is a vector file and here comes in another useful technique are you working in after effect. You can always click on this image and you have two options here. You go inside the layer and you can either Aalto trace. So after effects we'll do a little bit of tracing around this image and we'll try to vectorize it or you can simply create shapes from Vector layer. As I click here with one click I have a shape layer instead of a simple image put inside of. After Effects. Now what are the differences exactly as before. As I click here I have the transformation parameters of this image on the right while on the left side as I open it I have content group 1 and I have the path which I can work with and keyframe it and change it up and do whatever I like. I can click here on path 1. So I see those little rectangles and I can simply grab it and change the little bird. That's for example make a cool bird out of it. Well right now it's really fat. It's not much of a bird left but I wanted to show you that we will work with paths and this is something important for you to remember of course as shapewear also has some options to change the color and transformation options so we can also scale it up make a bigger skew it or do any changes you want from those parameters. The only change here is that we have the shape and the path which we can edit directly. Now you come into play. Please go inside after effect. Open up a vector icon and try to paste it as an image and convert them to a bezier path. If you do not have any simple vector files just use my resources. I want you to get a little bit familiar with those options. It's always good to focus on the product you are actually doing right now. So even if you know this please it's a good way to remember this. Open up after effects. In part this I can and work with it a little bit in the next lesson. I want to teach you how to morph one object to another object. If you want to learn D-school that Meek Please head over to the next lesson.