After Effects CS5 using the Puppet Pin Tool

Finished the energy ball, which glows as bright as a 75 watt light bulb. Luscious. Now what? Set the electric charges to music? Might be nice. A little R&B? Michael Jackson? Electric Light Orchestra? Maybe later.

Animation.  My energy ball sits in the middle of a street in Manhattan. Let’s plan it out.

Storyboard: A gargoyle flies  into the scene attracted to the ball of light. He perches on a car then ventures closer. His body is aglow. He shrieks. Money flies out of the energy ball which begins to die only to reveal a new year’s baby, which the gargoyle picks up by its claws and flies away. LOL. I love it!

I found a JPG of a gargoyle. Masked it off.  Placed off screen. Scaled down. Added Puppet Pins to strategic points on its wings, claws and mouth. Manipulated wings, claws and mouth until I had the perfect effect. Scaled him as he approached the active ball.

Found another JPG of dollar bills and a New Year’s 2011 baby. Followed same steps used to animate the gargoyle testing and saving my creation as I proceeded from one item to the next.

Once I found the appropriately eerie music, the stage was set. Now I’m tweaking each animated figure until I achieve the exact desired effect.

YouTube offers excellent ideas for animating still photos or drawings with After Effects. My favorite was created by Ashraf Hamdi. Enjoy . . .


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