16 Replies Latest reply on Nov 28, 2012 1:41 PM by BenjaminMarkus Branched to a new discussion.

    How Create Gusting Snow and Fog

    P_Forrest Level 1



      I have AE CS6 and Premiere Pro, etc..  and I was wondering how to make gusting snow.  I know how to make falling snow but I'd like to do something like in the following video. 


      Gusting Snow Effect



      It would seem he has the snow going sideways and smoke. 


      thanks for any help/ideas?


      Peter Forrest

      CS6 ProPro suite, Win 7 64 bit

        • 1. Re: Gusting snow effect...
          Todd_Kopriva Level 8

          Use the CC Snowfall effect included with After Effects CS6, which has wind controls.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Gusting snow effect...
            P_Forrest Level 1

            Thanks for the "wind controls" info.  I've experimented with some of the controls and I like the results.   I guess some gusts of smoke would be nice but I don't see smoke in AE.  I wonder if I need Red Giant Trapcode Particular with its swirling dust motes.  Does anyone recommend Red Giant Trapcode 2.2?

            • 3. Re: Gusting snow effect...
              Todd_Kopriva Level 8

              For smoke, I almost always just use stock footage elements of smoke. Creating them from scratch in a particle effect is difficult and usually not worth it.

              1 person found this helpful
              • 4. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                P_Forrest Level 1

                Thanks Todd.  I actually do have some smoke in some footage I took in Berlin.  I can probably bring that in and try out the puppet tool on it.  I just need some swirls.


                I'm mostly a Premiere Pro and Photoshop user.   I've used AE a few times but it's time I get a handle on it.  I have the AE Classroom in a Book CS6.


                I wonder if Particular has some easy presets for those swirling dust motes.  Best to probably download a demo and see.



                • 5. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                  Todd_Kopriva Level 8

                  You're on the right track, thinking of using distortion effects to shape the smoke that you have to what you need.


                  Check out Detonation Films; they have good free smoke and fire assets, including some smoke vortices if I recall correctly.


                  I don't mean to say that particle effects are never the right tool for the job---just not the first thing to try.

                  1 person found this helpful
                  • 6. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                    P_Forrest Level 1

                    Thanks Todd,


                    I really appreciate your help!





                    • 7. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                      BenjaminMarkus Level 4

                      Before you try Particular I would highly recommend the following method using Turbulent Displace, which is a built-in effect.  I personally think it creates excellent fog/smoke layers which you can completely animate, keyframe and control manually:



                      a.) Create a white solid.

                      b.) Mask it into a shape that more or less represents the way you want your fog to look.

                      c.) Adjust the mask feather to about 500 pixels.  You can change it or animate it later once it's in your scene.

                      d.) Add the Turbulent Displace effect to the white solid layer.

                      e.) Change the complexity to 6.0 and if you want the displacement of the fog to change over time I would suggest animating the offset and possibly the evolution.

                      f.) Then if you want the fog blowing across the screen I would suggest animating its position and possibly also the mask path.

                      g.) If the fog is too opaque you can adjust the opacity.

                      • 8. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                        P_Forrest Level 1



                        Thanks a lot Ben for the super clear step by step instructions!   I will try it out tomorrow!  I'm a bit busy tonight.


                        I think your Turbulence Displace fog solution mixed with the CC Snowfall is exactly what I need!   





                        • 9. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                          BenjaminMarkus Level 4

                          Me too .  Let me know how it goes.

                          • 10. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                            P_Forrest Level 1

                            Will do!

                            • 11. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                              P_Forrest Level 1

                              Hi Ben,


                              Thanks for the amazing advice and you've saved me hundreds of dollars!  8-) You're right that all that I needed is built in AE.  It's like digging for buried treasure but you had the map!  hehe

                              Anyway, I have three quick questions.


                              1) You had a black solid underneath your white solid. When I created my new composition to start, it created a faux black background.  What's the difference between the composition's black background (that is not a layer) and your black solid background.  I know your black solid is a layer like in Photoshop but what is the black when there is no black layer?


                              2) On that very front, how can one make a transparent layer when everything is all black?


                              3) I can now animate the fog left to right and up and down without a problem.  What would be the best way to animate it like a stretched out slinky or spring or corkscrew?


                              Thanks very much!



                              • 12. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                                P_Forrest Level 1

                                Ok, I've been messing more with the keyframing and the effects parameters and I'm getting very nice results!  Woohoo!  Not necessarily the corkscrew snow gusts but really nice.     I also went to my real winter footage and followed your procedures on a real photo and the gusting snow with turbulence displace is transparent so forget what I said in QUESTION 2.    Cool! 


                                If you still have any ideas how to make a rollercoaster corkscrew path animation, please let me know!   Thanks a million!!!


                                I'm thinking of keyframing:   rotate, scale and position.



                                • 13. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                                  Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                  Particular is a great plugin and is very useful for a number of things. You might want to use the method you have now together with Particular to build your effect. The corkscrew path animation would be fairly simple in Particular. (Well, "simple" depending on your level of experience with After Effects...)

                                  • 14. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                                    BenjaminMarkus Level 4

                                    Particular will give you more options for different types of motion that you might not be able to get out of a white solid with Turbulent Displace.  However, you can also try using some distortion effects to see if that gets you closer to a corkscrew.  Also, I just put the black layer there so you could see the fog more clearly.  Otherwise, the layer's transparency will depend on what you set the opacity to as well as the mask feathering.

                                    • 15. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                                      P_Forrest Level 1

                                      Thanks Szalam.


                                      Thanks for the explanation, Ben.   I try out the distortion effects.  I think we can close this thead now.  





                                      • 16. Re: Gusting snow effect...
                                        BenjaminMarkus Level 4

                                        The second half of this discussion has been branched to a new thread entitled How to Create Steam.