Text Depth
Basics of using Invigorator in After Effects

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In the first two portions of our project exercise, we created a rain of 3D pills in NewTek’s LightWave 3D, saved that animation out as a series of RPF files that we then brought into After Effects to add some post Depth of Field and fog work using AE’s 3D effects. Toward the end of the exercise, we added the company text using the Text Tool. To add even more depth to the logo, we don’t have to go back to LightWave, but can create text with depth using Invigorator.

If you haven’t used Invigorator before, then you are in for a treat. We’ll be using the Classic version of the program that ships with the AE 6.0 Production Bundle. In a nutshell, you use a file created in Adobe Illustrator and Invigorator analyses the paths and extrudes a 3D shape from it. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
From this…

…to this

With the plug-in, you can also use Invigorator’s built in lights and cameras, or (even better) use After Effect’s 3D camera and lights as well.

Note: For those of you who have used Invigorator in AE5.5, you are probably familiar with the flaw in the classic version that did not allow you to use Illustrator files saved in any other format but 8.0. In the latest free release, you can save your file in the most current version (10).

Instead of explaining every little detail, it is probably better to just jump right in to this portion of the project exercise and explain as we go.

Step 1: Open Adobe Illustrator. Use the Text Tool to create the name of our client company – Rxpills.com.

Step 2: In order for Invigorator to understand the Illustrator file correctly, after creating the text, it needs to be converted to outlines before it can be used (Type>Create Outlines).

Step 3: With the file saved, you can now move over to After Effects. In your composition, create a New Solid (Command+Y/Control+Y) that is the same size as the Comp. It doesn’t matter what color the layer is because we’ll be applying an effect to it.

Source: Digital Media Online, Inc.

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