6 Replies Latest reply on Mar 23, 2008 10:17 AM by A. Cobb

    How do I create this particle effect?

      I am pretty new to After Effects and I'm getting to grips with all the particle effects and have managed to create some cool looking animations, but I'm trying to create the particle effect as seen in the image link below. Can anyone tell me how this is done, and what plug-in (if any) would be used to create something like this? I can't get anything I do to look like this. Thanks...

        • 1. Re: How do I create this particle effect?
          Mylenium Most Valuable Participant
          That's a combination of 2 effects - a particle system such as Trapcode particular with the actual lighting effects created by Knoll Light Factory Spectacular.

          • 2. Re: How do I create this particle effect?
            Level 1
            I thought Knoll might be used actually. How do you create those particles with Trapcode though? The shape seems custom. How do you do that? And they have that effect of coming to the camera and beyond, a real sense of 3D about them, and they have a transluscent quality. I've only just started experimenting with Trapcode, but I'm not sure how to achieve that.
            • 3. Re: How do I create this particle effect?
              Andrew Yoole MVP & Adobe Community Professional
              Create the custom particle in Photoshop or a separate comp. Drag the custom particle into your main comp, turn its visibility off, set Particular's particle setting to "Custom Particle", and choose the new layer as the source.

              Create a camera for the comp and turn on "Depth of field". Experiment with the settings until you get the desired effect.

              Personally, I'd use two Particular layers for that look, one for the larger particles and another for the smaller ones.
              • 4. Re: How do I create this particle effect?
                Mylenium Most Valuable Participant
                As Andrew said, Particular has built-in DOF (see the Render settings and Visibility section in the plugin interface) and will match the settings of your AE 3D camera. Using some custom particles with low opacity settings and Add blendmode should give you some nice results.

                • 5. Re: How do I create this particle effect?
                  Level 1
                  Thanks for that. Very useful. One thing I wondered actually is how this should be layered? As i have several layers in my composition, and I need the particles to be above them all, on what layer should they be placed? Should I create a new layer? Should it just be a blank Photoshop layer? I am not sure what the correct layer and/or setting is so that the particles will blend with what is underneath to create the desired effect.
                  • 6. Re: How do I create this particle effect?
                    A. Cobb Level 3
                    The Particular effect doesn't composite with the source image of a layer, so it will always need to be on its own layer. No need to create the layer in Photoshop. A comp-sized 2D solid will do the trick (the color doesn't matter). Beyond that, experiment with blend modes to get the result you want.