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Creating Animated Backgrounds

Save yourself some money and create your own

Much nicer! Now, we want this shimmer to animate, so let's create a keyframe for the shimmer's "Phase" at the start of our composition with a value of "0", and we are going to have three full revolutions happen in our seven second composition, so press the "End" key on your keyboard to jump to the end of the composition, but instead of putting the keyframe here, we're going to click to the "Next Frame" in our time controls to put this keyframe one frame past the end.

Why, you ask? Because we want it to loop seamlessly, and putting the keyframe at 6:29 would give us a one frame (noticeable) pause before it starts again. Let's take a look at what we have now.



We're almost done, but there is one thing that is very noticeable, and that is that the white is WAY too bright. So, let's fix that by changing the transfer mode of the "White Solid" layer. We're going to use "Overlay", so I'm going to change it and take a look at the result.

As you can see, it's almost unnoticeable, so, let's duplicate the layer. Now it looks much better! The best part of the effect is that it is completely loopable, and if I find the Shine effect to be moving too quickly, all I have to do is adjust the "Phase" parameter from "3" to "2" or even "1", and it will give us a slower, calmer effect.

3 phase

2 phase

1 phase

Don't get me wrong, I'm not slamming companies that make these animated backgrounds, but the problem you will notice very quickly is that with a lot of people buying them out there, you will start seeing them pop up more and more on television shows and corporate videos. Chances are you have purchased effects like Trapcode's Shine, or other effects that will let you create simple, effective looping backgrounds to add unique looks to your pieces, and they won't take a great deal of time or headaches to create. For more information on Trapcode's Shine, or to download the free demo, you can check it out at www.redgiantsoftware.com.


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Kevin P McAuliffe is currently a Senior Video Editor working in HD post production in Toronto, Canada. He has been in the television industry for 12 years, and spends his days onlining on a Final Cut Pro HD. Kevin's high definition onlining credit list includes concerts for Coldplay, Sarah McLachlan, Barenaked Ladies, Snow Patrol, Sum41, Paul Anka, Il Divo and Pussycat Dolls, to name a few. Also, Kevin is an instructor of Advanced Final Cut Studio 2 at the Toronto Film College. If you have any questions or comments, you can drop him a line at [email protected]


Related Keywords:motion graphics, animated backgrounds, visual effects

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