7 Replies Latest reply on Feb 2, 2012 8:00 AM by bogiesan

    Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)


      Hey, I'm really new to AE CS5, but after looking up some kinetic typography tutorials, I decided to try and make one for my band. I've been doing pretty good and have learned a lot, but for the bridge of the song I wanted to have the music notes pop up with the music, since there's no vocals in that part.

      Very similiar to this video.


      at 2:12 - 2:24


      I've tried transcribing the part into a music notation software (Sibelius) and taking a picture of the notes it self, and the staff itself, but when I try to animate the notes on the timeline, it doesn't let me animate it the same as if it were text. Not sure if this makes a difference, but the standard timeline color for text is red, and with the image its like a teal color. I can't move it by frames, only by certain intervals which doesn't work at all for what I'm trying to do.


      I hope this makes sense and hopefully someone could help me out or point me to someone/somewhere who can.


      Thanks so much!


        • 1. Re: Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)
          Andrew Yoole MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          To do it as nicely as it's done in your example, there's no easy way.  You will need to create the music in Photoshop or Illustrator, separate each note onto it's own layer, then import to AE as a Composition, and animate note by note. 


          You could play around with a font that draws music notation, but it won't have nearly the flexibility or true note-by-note style of the version you linked to.


          Cool clip, btw. :-)

          • 2. Re: Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)
            Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            In the clip you posted the musical staff was wiped on with a simple transition like Linear Wipe but the musical notation was animated on a note by note process with most of the notes scaling up, moving into position, and wiping on. It makes a very pleasing effect but it would be very time consuming. To to that in AE you'd place the anchor point at the top of a note's flag or where a note attached to a beam, animate the scale and position as the note was wiped on. This means each element of the musical notation would have to be a separate layer. This also means lots and lots of time. I'd guess that if the section in the reference video was duplicated by me in AE that it would take between 6 and 12 hours including creating the notation.


            Let's see if there's an easier way. You could easily fake this by putting the all notation on one layer, the bars on another, and the lines on another and just using a horizontal wipe on the notation and the lines and an animated gradient wipe or track matte to reveal the bars. That would get you very close.


            An even easier approach would be to just scan a sheet of music or find a PDF copy of your music and import that and use animated gradients or a linear wipe to reveal the notation.


            The last option would be to look for some free musical notation fonts and then learn how to use the font. I have a free font called MusiQucik. It's only mildly useful because the notation has little or no relationship to the keyboard and you've got to use a character map to create any music. If you wanted to take the time to create a few bars of your music with this font you could simply use the typewriter effect to reveal it. This may be the fastest option if you can figure out how to notate the music.


            I'd probably go with scanning some sheet music, maybe even hand written notation and revealing it with track mattes or wipes in AE. It would probably take about an hour to create a pretthy close version the 12 seconds of animation that you see in the clip.


            I just thought of another option. If you have access to a midi keyboard, some notation software, you could do a screen recording of someone playing in the piece.

            • 3. Re: Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)
              xaerr00 Level 1

              Thanks guys! I will try these out and let you know how it works out.


              Really appreciate it!

              • 4. Re: Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)
                bogiesan Level 4

                I didn't see anything in the example that was particularly difficult. A few of the notes had some extra wobble and glam but that's not hard to do, either. The one thing you'd be giving up is the way each note grows form the bottom up. That requires each not to be individually animated. If, as Rick suggests, you can acquire a notation font that works for youm Boris text engines might be able to see it. Some fo the Boris animation presets had an overshoot effect that is very similar to that gwoth effect. I just saw the staff as one layer and the notes wiping on as a separate layer with hold keyframes on the mask reveal. I could suggest creating a 3D layer that provides the illusion of the note lauyer streaming on from behind the camera. Or a stacked copy of the note animation layer that has a glow that wips along with the notes as they appear.

                • 5. Re: Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)
                  xaerr00 Level 1

                  Hey everyone just wanted to say thanks again for taking the time to help me!


                  Here's the final product, it's for my band's single.



                  The music notation starts at 2:11


                  This is my first typography vid and using after effects so don't laugh!




                  • 7. Re: Trying to animate music notes with audio (Example)
                    bogiesan Level 4

                    No one's laughing, xaerr0.

                    Well done.

                    Now, get someone to shoot excellent footage of you and your pals performing or rehearsing and edit a real video clip.

                    And thank you, thank you very much, for returning to your earlier thread. Hardly anyone ever does that.