4 Replies Latest reply on Mar 20, 2014 7:17 AM by Rick Gerard

    how to make swirling lights?


      so I am Trying to make a video like the background of this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQ0UhHccYYE.

      the swirling things in the background. any help would be greatly appreciated


        • 1. Re: how to make swirling lights?
          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP
          1. Create a solid the size of your composition.
          2. Create a shape layer using the star tool and adjust it to look like the pinwheel by setting stroke and fill to the same color, the stroke to 2 pixels, the inner radius to 0, the outer radius big enough to fill your composition window.
          3. Add a repeater, set offset X and Y to 0 and rotation to .03º and copies to about 80
          4. Add keyframes to the shape layer's rotation property
          5. Add drop shadow to the shape layer.
          6. Done


          AE Basics

          Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 8.38.24 AM.png

          • 2. Re: how to make swirling lights?
            Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

            There's a whole article on how to create sunbursts using various methods on Pro Video Coalition.



            • 3. Re: how to make swirling lights?
              Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              My problem with Rick's way is that it takes a long time to render.


              One of my favorite ways from back in the day (that lets you have a softer starburst) was to create a horizontal ramp/gradient, then apply Colorama and choose solarize grey for the output, duplicate that effect a few times, apply Polar Coordinates and set it to be Rect to Polar at 100%. Use levels to crush it to to values you like if you want a sharper sunburst. You could use the Venetian Blinds effect instead of the ramp and Colorama to make the horizontal bands if you just wanted a sharp starburst.


              As Mylenium says, there are a ton of ways to do it in the article he mentioned. I particularly like Todd's way of using a dashed stroke on a shape layer.

              • 4. Re: how to make swirling lights?
                Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                OK,  for those with a slower computer, here's the shape layer with a triangular path and a repeater. Renders a bunch faster.


                1. Decide how many segments you want to have - 20
                2. Use the pen tool to draw a rough triagnle shape starting from the center of the comp to the upper left corner
                3. Add a repeater, change number of copies to 20, set Transform Offset>Position to 0,0
                4. Select Transform Offset>Rotation and type in 360/20
                5. Edit the shape of your triangle to get the look you want


                Starburst done EZ PZ.


                Add effects and rotate the shape layer.


                Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 6.52.55 AM.png

                Or as Todd suggested as suggested by Szalam


                1. Create a circle shape layer about 1500 pixels in diameter
                2. Set Stroke width to 1500
                3. Set dashes Dash 40 Gap 60

                Screen Shot 2014-03-20 at 7.10.18 AM.png

                OR, OR, OR


                Simple AE Basics stuff.