Practical Particles by Michael Park
Trapcode's Particular & Adobe After Effects Video Tutorials with Project Files
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The inspiration to create this tutorial DVD on Particular came when Michael Park realized just how integral to media creation particles have become. From advertisements, to feature films, to television shows, particles are literally everywhere. He chose to use Trapcode’s Particular as his particle generator of choice because of the immense flexibility it affords and some of the unique features it offers compared to the particle generators inside of After Effects.
This training dvd addresses everything from simple particle generation from a single emitter to multiple emitters interacting with 3d layers in your compositions. The projects are specifically designed to showcase the wide variety of Particular’s main features and demonstrate both traditional and creative uses of particles in your work.
This dvd is a must-have for any Particular or After Effects user. It covers particle related subjects such as emitters, particle types, physics, motion paths and much, much more through the step-by-step creation of real world examples. The tutorials will also enhance your standard After Effects knowledge by exploring expressions, manipulating and combining effects and teaching you tips and tricks to set your work apart from the crowd. The dvd contains everything you need to recreate the exciting effects demonstrated in the projects, as well as the final project file for your modification and reverse engineering. Whether looking for specific training on Particular, or more general training to take your After Effects knowledge to the next level, you will not find more bang for your buck than with Creative Cow’s Practical Particles!
Project 1a: Logo Integration Part 1 (10:01)
In this project, we will learn the basic interface of Particular 2.0 while creating a logo integration using a custom logo as a source. In doing so, we will discuss layer sources, use time remapping to create our particle build, and look at some tips for preparing custom source layers in Particular.
Project 1b: Logo Integration Part 2 (22:03)
In this project, we will expand on the logo integration concept from part 1 and learn how to quickly create a composition of sequence images to be used as custom particles. We will also take our first look at custom particles in Particular and, see how we can use another Trapcode plugin, Shine, as a transition between the particle integration effect and the final logo.
Project 2: Bad to the Bovine (23:15)
Open Fire! It's raining lead! Particular has two different physics setups, Air and Bounce. In the first project, we used the Air physics setting. In this project, we will explore the bounce physics parameters and learn how to make particles interact with 3d layers in our scene. We will also use After Effects' native tools to create a custom bullet hole shape for our project.
Project 3: 23 (24:23)
Need to save the world in less than an hour? We've got your back! In this project, we will create a short splash screen advertisement for a new television show called "23." This project demonstrates how to use the layer grid emitter settings in Particular to form a larger image or text out or smaller images when the camera trucks back. Another instance of Particular will be used to create a 3d particle cloud to add depth to the project.
Project 4: Fire from the Sky (26:05)
It's the end of the world as we know it...and I feel fine and I hope you will too as we create a meteor in space and set it on a collision course with earth. In this project, we will take a look at some new parameters including controlling the color of particles over their life as well as creating a custom particle source for our smoke trails using native tools. We will also use Particular's physics time parameter to create a custom 3d starfield.
Project 5: Phantom Footprints (16:16)
What happens when the invisible man goes for a wintery stroll? Well, he leaves phantom footprints, of course. In this project, we will take a look at using particles behind the scenes to drive the creation of footprints in snow. We will create and animate footprints along a path and then integrate those prints into a winter scene. To finish it off, we will use Particular to create 3d snow flurries to add some additional atmosphere to the scene.
Project 6: Oceanic Opening (28:27)
Particular hits the high seas...or rather under the sea. In this project, we will create an underwater scene, complete with a stylized ocean surface, sharks, a school of fish, and a title reveal. Creative use of the physics time operator and implementation of the new orient to motion capability of Particular 2.0 give this scene an organic look and feel. Be sure to bring your scuba gear!
Project 7: Beam Me Up (18:33)
We cannot change the laws of physics...but we can sure bend them pretty far. In this project, we will learn to use a custom shape layer to create a conforming shell of particles around an actor. We will use one of the new features of Particular 2.0, world transform, to drive the movement of the particles.
Project 8: Champagne Wishes (14:29)
Break out the bubbly, it's time to celebrate! In this project we will tackle creating a custom bubble particle from scratch using After Effects' built in tools and a reflection map. Then, we will turn our attention to creating a realistic 3d world of fun-filled fizz as we create 3d text out of bubble particles and watch it explode, on cue, into a wild mass racing towards the sky.
Project 9: Sublime Swirls (27:35)
Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird, it's a plane...no...it's a lightstreak! In this project we will recreate one of the most popular looks floating around on the internet and televsion today, the lightstreak. We will use the brand-new particle type included in Particular 2.0, just for this feature and also delve into a little trigonometry to control our light path. We will also exploit the new 32 bit, high dynamic range ability of Particular 2.0 to get glows you can't duplicate with any other After Effects particle system. In addition, we will utilize a handy technique to smooth out any linear interpolation of our particle paths caused by Particular's use of subframe sampling.
Project 10: Charmed (26:10)
Prepare to duel as we create a magical scene in which we turn day into night and create a wand effect that will impress even the most seasoned wizard. For this effect, we will use native tools for the day to night effect and turn to Particular for the energy flow and sparks. We will look to the motion path feature of Particular as a means to control our particle path.
Project 11: Phoenix Pictures (17:51)
Our final project is so hot, it smokes! Well, it doesn't smoke, but it is on fire. We will use Particular and some native After Effects tools to create some cool flames on a stylized logo. We will also use Trapcode Shine to kick our intensity up a notch or two, and show an alternative means to achieve the look of Shine, if you don't happen to own the plugin. Finally, we will explore how to create an animation preset out of your project, so that recreating fire in your next project will only take a couple of mouse clicks. Hey, it beats the heck out of rubbing two sticks together!
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