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Adobe Beginner Classes Episode #13 project file

After a long hiatus, Adobe Beginner Classes should be coming back online.  I’ve worked on a number of episodes and the first one is coming up today.  After Effects has been my muse yet again and so there is some amount of focus on it.  This episode will have the first of what ultimately became three parts on 3D text inside of After Effects (with no additional plugins).

I really enjoyed doing this one and couldn’t leave well enough alone.  That being said, this is nothing new to an experience AE designer.  This has been done and taught by many great people.  In fact, I must give do credit to Danny Princz in NYC as well as FXPHD.com because it’s from them that I originally learned this technique.

And while I don’t use this technique, I should also mention Maltaannon’s great plug-in that uses After Effect’s Shape Layers feature.  It’s free, so have at it.  You can get it here.

Once the video is live on AdobeTV, I will post an embedded version in this blog entry.


Download 3D Text Project File

2-28-09 Update: The episode in question is below and you can get it via Adobe TV or through the Adobe Media Player. As an aside, it was four years ago today that I officially joined Adobe! 😉


I have a question. What if I want to have multiple 3D words in a 3d space that the camera can navigate between. How would I include the multiple 3DWordComps in another comp and still have the world look 3d and not flattened?

[DR – Ivan, all you have to do is create the word comps as you describe and then drop them into a new comp together. Enable the “collapse transformations” switch (next to the shy switch in the timeline) and make sure these nested comps are also 3d enabled layers. I just mocked this up to double check and it works.]

All I can say is that I love this tutorial. It works just fine for what I need. The last thing I wanted to do was to have to go out and buy a third party plugin such as Zaxwerks Invigorator or the 3D type inside Boris FX for After Effects.

Thanks for spending the time to share this. Do you have an action or fx for this?

I started following the ABC but maybe I am too much of a beginner to notice that these classes never really finish a project i.e. animating a flower then putting into another project then showing the steps to complete it?? Also now that you have moved on to CS4 where do you suggest us cs3 people go for beginner classes- signed lost and left out

[DR – Thanks for your comments RJ. There is no such thing as too much of a beginner and glad that you’ve gotten something out of ABC in the past.

You do bring up a couple of points that I can comment on. First, some of the projects I do are not ‘projects’ per se but rather elements or ideas of things that I see in everyday design work. In other words, I’m not going to walk you through how to do a 30 second commercial that has an animated vine/flower among all of the things going on…I’m going to show you how to animate the flower itself.

Second, while I’ve certainly moved on to CS4 in terms of the software that I use, I tend to go out of my way to make most of the things that I do, ‘backwards compatible’ to older versions. This episode is a perfect example. The 3D text capabilites that I outline can be done probably as far back as AE6.5.

While not everything will be that way, I am totally mindful that people may not always be on the latest and greatest from Adobe. Stay with us RJ and I hope you enjoy the upcoming shows.]

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