Shockwave Tutorial 100% in After Effects!

hey what’s up Andrew Kramer here for Video Copilot dotnet and welcome back to another very exciting tutorial today we’re going to taking a look at creating our own custom shock wave effect inside of After Effects without using any third-party plugins so let’s go and take a look at what we’re going to be creating all right so we’ve got some really cool details here we’ve got some particle effects we’ve got some fractal noise and you’re going to find this effect it’s very customizable so you can really be creative and create your own looks now I should tell you that we have a shockwave particle effects collection it’s really cool you should definitely check it out but I wanted to try to create an effect that didn’t require any third party plugins alright so let’s go and jump back into After Effects and get started so the way I came up with this a factor this technique was I was looking at one of our shockwave elements from the collection so we can see it’s like a really cool very fluid looking a particle effect well I actually added the polar coordinates effect and I dropped it onto the shockwave element and when I turned up the interpolation I realized that I now have a linear effect so the shockwave has now been turned into a linear or a straight effect so it kind of gave me an idea what if I created a straight effect and then did the reverse and turn it back into sort of a shock wave or a spherical effect and so that’s basically what we did sort of reversed engineered the shockwave and came up with something pretty cool so let’s go and start building our comp so I’m going to create a new composition and we’ll call this shockwave SW and we’ll hit OK so what I’m going to do is create a new layer so do new solid and we’ll call this wave and we’ll hit OK we’ll come over to the effects let’s type in fractal noise and we’ll drop that over here and there’s a few different effects that we want to turn on so first of all let’s turn the invert effect on and let’s change this to dynamic progressive so this is going to just kind of make it look a little bit more tenderly a little bit more like fire I guess and then we want to create a shockwave effect so if you remember when this effect is on the shockwave comes from the top so what we want to do is build the effect coming from the top down so we’re going to select the rectangle mask tool and we’re just going to draw a shape around the top portion like this and then wanted to do a few things so let’s keyframe the mask path the feather and maybe we’ll move forward then we’ll take the selection tool drag this down a bit maybe you turn the feathering amount up maybe keyframe the expansion as well let’s see it looks pretty cool and then we’re going to add some animation to the evolution so let’s alt click on the evolution type in time times 150 and what this will do is over time it will sort of randomly phase that fractal noise so just give us a little bit more life and the other thing I want to do is I want to animate the transform of the fractal noise so we’ll open this up and I want to change the offset turbulence and so you can see what this does is basically moves around the position of the effect so if we keyframe this and I’m hitting you by the way to show the keyframes it’ll move this over and we want to go ahead and move it down I want the effect to move down in the direction that it’s going kind of like momentum if you will and I’m actually going to take all of these keyframes select them and we can right click and choose keyframe easy ease or just hit f9 maybe add a little bit of feathering to the initial and the other thing I want to do is fade it out so what we’ll do is we’ll take the brightness and you turn it down until the fractal is gone and it might go to the very beginning and do the same thing so that it pops on really quickly maybe over like three or four frames and then fades out now this is looking pretty slow so we’ll take all of our keyframes hit f9 and bring them a bit

closer so let’s see so the work area our N and then we can preview over here so that looks pretty cool we can play around with this as as we go but just to be able to see what this looks like as a shockwave let’s create an adjustment layer so call this a shockwave polar and we’ll type in the effect called polar coordinates and we’ll put this on the adjustment layer then if we turn the interpolation up set this to rectangle to polar we’re going to start seeing a bit of this shockwave alright so that looks pretty cool so this is kind of the basic idea we have this first layer of our shockwave and let’s go and turn off the filter for the shockwave and let’s create another copy so hit control D or edit duplicate and we’ll set it to screen and now we want to offset some of the settings here so I want to create one that is maybe a little bit faster so we’ll take the keyframe select them and move them closer let’s also go to the fractal noise effect and maybe turn the random seed to something different maybe change the speed of the evolution to say 250 and that will basically make it animate a little bit faster and maybe even play around with the feathering so let’s see let’s have the feathering turned up but more initially and our offset see if we can maybe get that to move a little bit faster by moving that offset position down so this is kind of creating multiple levels of the fractal noise and we can even play with the complexity of the fractal noise which will you know add a little bit more detail we can even change the scale this is really where you can start being creative you could turn the contrast down and you know you can have some fun with that let’s go and make one more copy so we’ll take the bottom copy I want to start from that original copy ctrl D and we’ll put at the very top set it to screen and for this copy I want to make some pretty substantial modifications to this so again let’s go to the options change the random seed and we’re going to add another cool effect this effect is called CC glass and we’re going to take it we’re going to apply it directly below the fractal noise and we’re gonna go to the surface and turn the bump map layer off and what this will do is use itself as the bump map layer so if we set the displacement to a negative value you can see we start choking that you know fractal noise and creating kind of almost a more of a liquidy type of effect and so now if we turn them all on we have to add a little contrast to a few of these you know we can see a much different effect now for this particular one I want to go ahead and slow it down so I’m actually going to take the keyframes and move them over a bit so that none of these shockwaves are going the same speed we want them to all be slightly at a different speed so it looks like there’s more detail and now let’s go and turn on the shockwave polar coordinates effect starting to look a little bit more organic I mean look at that that’s pretty cool-looking and you should probably check out the color vibrance effect it’s a free plugin that we created that really helps colorize elements inside of After Effects in fact I know I said I didn’t use any third-party plugins but that wasn’t true and that is the color vibrance effect so we’ll drop that on here and we can just start playing around with you know the colorization we can turn up the brightness alright so we’ve got the basic shockwave ready to go and if I take the copy that we added our CC glass we can maybe punch this up a little bit more maybe turn the height up to give it a much more kind of a liquidy effect and maybe brighten up even now at this point we don’t actually need the colorization because we’re going to probably do that in a separate pass but that just kind of helps see how it’s coming along alright so there is one technical issue and that is we can see a seam there’s a seam right here where the circle effect comes together

now there’s a lot of different ways to fix this but I’ve actually come up with a really simple way so if you’ve ever done a seamless background you’re trying to tile something that doesn’t wrap here’s a really really cool trick so create an adjustment layer and come over here and type in offset drop this on to the adjustment layer and offset the layer over so as we slide it over we can see the seam is now in the middle and it’s pretty noticeable right and so what you’re going to do is take a mask and on that adjustment layer we’re going to draw a box around the seam so just like that and then we’re going to set the mask to subtract then hit F or bring up the mask feather properties hide the mask real quick and we’re going to turn up the feather amount so what we’ve done is we’ve offset it so that we can find the seam and then we subtracted that area out so essentially we have now created a perfectly seamless shockwave effect so watch this if I take this and put this edge cleaning effect below the shock wave now the polar coordinates effect will happen last and we have completely eliminated the scene all right so let’s go and move on to the next step if you want to customize it more you can go into the fractal noise and really just start playing around with the settings like the scale of the noise will really make a difference and now you’ll notice the nice thing is that no matter what you do everything is automatically tiling so we don’t have to worry about any seam issues that might come up all right so we’ve got our shockwave here it’s looking really good but there’s a couple of things we can do to make it a little bit more energetic and that is to do a slight time remapping so what we’re going to do is take the SW comp and drop it into a new composition and what I’m going to do is right click and choose time enable time remapping and what this will allow us to do is make this feel like a more explosive shockwave so let’s go to about right here which is sort of the climax area maybe about 15 frames in and we’ll set a keyframe and check this out and we’ll take these two keyframes the first and last keyframe and we’ll slide them over to maybe frame seven so or maybe frame six and this way it’s going to be a lot faster so if we select the value time remap we can look at the graph view so this gives us a little bit of an indication we’ve sped up the first few frames and so it’s kind of going up the hill faster and then it’s going a little bit slower in real time but what I want to do is smooth this point out so what I can do right click and choose keyframe easy ease in and then if we look at the graph view you can see that it sort of gradually going into this straight line but I’m going to tweak this a little bit what I like to do is kind of follow the line and use the handle to sort of influence that velocity so that looks pretty good maybe it’s a little too fast but it feels more explosive to me rather than it just sort of fading on so here’s what we’ll do we’ll take these two keyframes the middle one and the first one and maybe we’ll just move them over maybe three or four frames one two page up page down we’ll move frame by frame by the way and we’ll slide them over and let’s go and take a look the other thing we can do is we can actually scale this effect up so for example I can take this point in time hit s set a keyframe for scale go to the beginning and maybe set this down to 25 and maybe set an easy ease f9 so that it’s going to slowly ease into the 100% maybe even just kind of wretch that out so that it grows really fast and then slows down to the normal size I think this looks pretty good I got to tell you it’s always a risk whenever you do a tutorial that it’s not going to look as good as you want it to because you’re sort of doing it live all the pressure is on everyone’s expecting it to be good but I’ll take good enough I’ll take good enough for sure so once we have the shockwave we’re going to pre render it out so we have this basic shockwave I know what you’re thinking

hey that doesn’t look anything like the shockwave in the example well we’re starting out with this one element and then I’m going to show you how to combine it to create a really cool explosive shockwave so we’re going to do is add this to the rendered queue and I’m going to set this to QuickTime and photo JPEG and come in here click photo JPEG and just save it off someplace all right so I’m going to go ahead and just import that video right back into our own project and so now I’ve got a quick time of that nice shockwave element so now I’m going to drop this into a new comp and we can start creating a more ambitious looking shockwave so one thing I like to do is add a little bit of a sharpen so an unsharp mask is going to really make this pop so check this out that’s cool and maybe I’ll take a copy ctrl D set it to screen we want actually to set both of these to screen because we’re going to switch them around and I’m going to hit the rotation tool I’m going to rotate this hit the s tool I’m going to scale this and I can even add a curves adjustment to just start modifying the contrast a little bit so here we have two copies and let’s just preview that for a second that’s cool maybe we’ll scale this down even more 40% like that it’s nice and maybe we’ll take another copy ctrl D and let’s scale it up even larger maybe we’ll add a little bit of a contrast curve we could take the sharpening off and dim this out a bit we always want to kind of rotate it as well so that it changes the angle now there’s some other cool things that we can do to these radial effects so for example I could take this interior explosion effect and add the Bulge effect so we type in bulge drop that out here and you can see it comes with some control handles we can actually grab those change them to the size of the shockwave let’s just make sure it’s a squared value 190 by 190 and using the Bulge height we can actually inch this effect or stretch it out into a more circular effect so if we stretch it out you’re going to see it’s kind of like ring type of effect that you see from the original example I did and maybe we duplicate it rotate one of them and maybe scale it down and let’s change the setting so this is really where you just want to play around so let’s do like a negative value we want to create that kind of stretched particle effect so let’s scale this up but we want to try to maintain some of that stretching so that’s cool let’s make sure this is squared 130 by 130 and maybe we’ll take one of these copies scale it up a bit more so that they’re not just a line and again this is really just about messing around it’s like rotating the effect scaling it layering it adding you know like a different contrast like this could just be some really highlight areas using the curves contrast and maybe you know you’re building in some sort of micro detail oh the other thing is that we can change the speed of some of these so for example let’s duplicate that control the and I know I’m going fast here I’m really just trying to illustrate that there’s no right way to do this you just kind of play around but what I’m going to do is time remap this to 50% which will be twice as fast as you can see and let’s scale it up a bit we might play with the old settings a bit and what that will do is kind of have that initial shock wave but because it’s so large it’s already huge so let’s keyframe the scale a bit f9 and so now we’ve created sir like this double shockwave so let’s scale it down just a little bit maybe need some more

easing stretch that out of it I want to keep looking at the animation you want to kind of get to get a sense for its momentum I mean this is looking really really quitting it’s looking better than the you know example I actually spent time on and here I’m just throwing this together let’s jump into just a few colorization tricks so let’s create an adjustment layer and we’re going to use the color vibrance effect and and you don’t have to use it I don’t know why you wouldn’t it’s free but if you want to just colorize it using curves you can I’ve done this in the past you can just kind of play around with the color channels and you can you know it’s definitely a good skill you definitely want to be able to customize your colorization that’s looking pretty sharp we’re using color vibrance right this is 2014 so we’re just gonna change some colors here we can turn up the brightness we have the gamma to make it a little more punch here and let me get the glow effect I do want to have a glow before set this to screen increase that a bit all right all right so this is looking pretty sharp you know I wouldn’t probably change too much so I want to add some flying particles so we’ll do is create a white solid and we’ll take the pixel poly effect you guys know this effect the classic and we’ll take a lip so we’ll just draw a circle right in the middle so let’s see here and we’ll turn the gravity off will turn up spinning to like to direction randomness speed randomness definitely going to want some of that and the lower grid spacing will make the smaller points and if we want it to add some motion blur maybe we’ll make this actually smaller seems like there’s too many we can add motion blur using a forced motion blur and if you want less particles just size down the shape of the area you’re on and then let’s just drop this below check it out so do you see that with just a little bit of work I actually made the design worse so I’m really good at this maybe I would bring the the speed down so that it doesn’t outpace the rest of the design and maybe just like a lot less particles maybe smaller particles if we make a grid smaller all right so that’s looking pretty fun you know this is just a really fun effect and you know I hope you guys like it and you can really do a lot with it so not to just keep adding on to it but I took some fire elements from our action essentials to pack so I just created a line of fire and using the same technique I actually wrapped it around a sphere or a render of a basketball and that’s pretty cool you can just kind of see we’ve got this nice cool ring of fire and just you know added a basketball with element all right well I hope you guys had a good time checking out the tutorial hope it wasn’t too long I just try to make it as complete as possible and of course we appreciate your support and although we have a shock wave product that is for sale we wanted to be able to show you guys something really cool you could do on your own without having to buy stuff but please check out our products page you know if you see any tools or plugins that might help you out on your production you know we really appreciate the support and it just helps us do more of the stuff in the future all right thank you guys for watching I’m Andrew Kramer and we see you next time you I better get out of here