After Effects: Effects from A-Z

Recently I heard about a series of tutorials being done at Motionworks, John Dickinson’s website. The series is called After Effects: Effects A-Z, and it’s an ambitious undertaking of going through every effect that ships with AE, and explaining it’s purpose.

There are several contributors so far – Maltaannon, Topher Welsh, Harry Frank, Eran Stern and, of course, John himself.

I’ll admit, my initial reaction was  – Why is John doing this? He does such fantastic design driven tutorials, why do to something so basic?

Then last week, twice in as many days, I was introduced to effects that have been in AE for years. One saved me hours of work, on the spot (it actually effected the development of a plug-in I am working on). The other would have saved me, had I known about it about 20 0ther times I was in a bind. The effects in question were unrelated to the series (They have not been covered yet), but the point was driven home, at least for me. There’s a lot more to learn…

So while the series covers some really basic stuff, it can actually be quite profound if you have never used the effect (and sometimes even if you have). Also important, is that it covers the application of the effects in a practical situation, and does it quickly, without wasting time. Given the fact that I’m virtually self-taught in AE, as I’m sure many of you are, I think we can all agree it won’t hurt bone up on our AE knowledge – especially on things we’ve never learned to begin with.

I’ll be keeping my eye on this series, and I hope you will too.

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