The Wonderful World of After Effects close

Karine Tonson la Tour
Karine Tonson la Tour
In Codegent News, Musings
19th May 2010
The Wonderful World of After Effects

There are 2 things that you want to avoid when a user lands on your site; firstly scaring them off with too much copy, secondly not giving them enough information to enable them to use your website or even understand what you do. 

A video is a great compromise; it can explain your proposition in seconds whilst simultaneously increasing accessibility and engagement. Creating, producing and editing a professional quality video seems like a daunting task but in reality, with the right tools, it isn’t as hard as you might think.

We’re going to give you an overview of why video is a valuable asset for any site, and why we believe After Effects is the best product for the job.

The Importance of Video

Why a video? From information-lead films to arty stop motions, video allows direct, fluent and human communication. It could be shown on the landing page of your website and allow you to present your business in an instant. It can also be used to reach out from your site to create buzz around your marketing campaigns. 

Why After Effects?

Improving your video 
There are a myriad of tools that After Effects gives us. It allows us to remove all evidence of camera shakes, increase contrast, modify luminosity to bring out gorgeous colours and so much more. Visual and matting effects can also be applied to improve the look and feel you want to give to the video. Alternative video editing programmes, Premiere or Final Cut can handle most of these improvements just as well but what makes After Effects better is that it doesn’t stop there...

Tracking function, total symbiosis
We can create a multi-layer composition by integrating other videos, photos, texts or vector graphics into your video. Notice I said "integrating", beware, adding is one thing, integrating is another. Thanks to the tracking function, we can follow a point moving on the 'master' video and apply this movement to the new item we have layed on top. From this comes the impression of symbiosis, graphics follow the movement of the camera perfectly, they really feel part of the video.

The Third Dimension
After Effects now takes your video production to the third dimension. The 3D mode allow you to create a virtual camera over your composition, to allow you to change your point of view. You have complete control over this virtual camera, being able to configure the lens length, image area size, and aperture. This powerful tool makes it quick and easy to incorporate several lights with shadows and define their intensity, all of which will take your video new level of dynamism.

High Quality Manipulation 
With After Effects, time can be stretched and/or reversed. But crucially it will also smooth out the jerkiness usually associated with this sort of effect when it is applied with Final Cut or Premier. 

After Effects is integrated
After Effects works seamlessly with other Creative Suite software such as Illustrator, Photoshop (including it’s 3D layers), Flash, Premiere Pro and other QuickTime-based software. You can even import and manipulate audio files and render them in high quality in real time. It is even possible to export the composition from After Effects to Flash, to then make it interactive. Whatever the project needs, this level of integration gives you the flexibility to port your content across different software.

Fit the Web

Be versatile & be connected
After Effects contains an export module which will optimise your video for the web. With a couple of clicks you can export your film to web-friendly formats like QuickTime, AVI or MPEG-4, making it easy to put your video onto your website, blog, Youtube, Vimeo etc.

Mobile accessibility 
The latest version of After Effects integrates mobile-device authoring into its workflow and multi-device previews for most phones and PDAs. With the ever-increasing popularity of smart phones, thinking about how to reach people on their mobiles is becoming a close second to reaching people on their PC's.

Video is a fantastic and popular way to reach and engage with people and any tools that help us do that better get the Codegent seal of approval!