6 Replies Latest reply on Dec 12, 2015 2:35 AM by BenSCR

# Scale/Speed - Animation

I'm trying to animate a photo cut out of an Aeroplane in After Effects.

I'm doing the animation to the photo starts off small than gets bigger and bigger till the nose and front window of the Aeroplane fill the screen.

I have done this by increasing the 'Scale' of the Aeroplane from small to big using two 'Keyframes' from 0 to 6 seconds. But the animation starts of over the first 3 seconds a faster speed than I want it, then the last 3 seconds the animation slows down moves a lot slower than I want it to. I have tried variations from 0-20 seconds but the animated effect is still the same. How can I control the speed so the Aeroplane moves are a smooth pace.

• ###### 1. Re: Scale/Speed - Animation

Without seeing your graph editor curves nobody can tell you much, but generally you should simply get used to the fact that good animation timing takes years of practice and experience. Simply keep refining and tweaking your curves...

Mylenium

• ###### 2. Re: Scale/Speed - Animation

I'm new to After Effects, so I get what you mean about good animation timing taking years of practice. I will have to look at the Graph Editor, and photo a photo it on this page.

• ###### 3. Re: Scale/Speed - Animation

AE is actually scaling 'correctly' - in a linear fashion, but it will look wrong. Here's why:

Let's say in the first second the aircraft goes from 100% to 500% - 5x bigger

Later in the animation it goes from 2000% size to 2,500% - 1.25x bigger

The scale value is increasing at an even rate per second as far as after effects is concerned - but these units are percentages - that's why the increase in scale appears to 'slow down'.

Here's the solution:

Right click (to get the contextual pop-up menu) and select:

Keyframe assistant > Exponential scale.

This will generate an exponential curve that will give you a perceptually correct increase in scale.

The downside of this method is that it gives you a keyframe on each frame.

(An option to workaround the keyframe-on-every-frame solution is is to duplicate your aircraft layer and apply the above method to the first layer. Then select all the scale keyframes on both layers. Go into the graph editor and use the handles on the keyframes of the second layer to copy the shape of the curve on the first layer. If you don't see handles on the two keyframes of your original animation in the graph editor, select the two keyframes and hit the third button from the right in the buttons along the bottom. Once you've copied the curve you can delete the first layer.

• ###### 4. Re: Scale/Speed - Animation

This seems like great and the correct advice. I'll try this method!

• ###### 5. Re: Scale/Speed - Animation

Alternatively, don't mess with scale at all.

Simply turn your aeroplane layer to be a 3d layer and animate it on the z-axis!

As you're new to AE, I'd suggest you start here first: http://adobe.ly/AE_basics

• ###### 6. Re: Scale/Speed - Animation

Thanks for the link and the great advice, I will try this method.