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Adobe After Effects CC Beginner Tutorial: Intro Guide to Learn The Basics (How to)

September 7, 2019

– [Justin] Hi everyone,
my name’s Justin Odisho and in this video, I’m
gonna go over the basics and intro to Adobe After Effects. So I know this program
can be very confusing to a beginner or if it’s
your first time looking at the program. Or maybe if you’re just
comfortable with Photoshop or Premiere and you never
really got into After Effects. So I’m gonna try to
explain what this all is, how you can demystify it and
what it’s all used for anyway. So you got a whole bunch
of stuff popping up here. Basically, it starts off
with a get started menu and these new updates and from here, you can open new
projects, recent projects. You actually don’t have to
create or open anything, you can actually just
close it if you want too and just pop up with your
After Effects window. So what is After Effects
in the first place and why would you use something like this in comparison to other video
editors like Premiere Pro or Final Cut, you know,
what’s the difference? So the best way that I
can try to explain this to help you understand is
After Effects is kind of like the Photoshop for video. See instead of being a
program like Premiere or Final Cut of Sony Vegas
where you have a timeline and you can drag clips and videos in order on the sequence. After Effects is a compositing
and motion graphics video editing software so that means you can compose many pieces and layers on top of one another
and you can also create different motion graphics
because it has better and different unique
stronger tools and engines in those areas like things
like the rotoscoping brush, camera motion tracking,
different complex effects. But let’s start with our basic menu. This is our composition menu
by the way, this right here which you can usually see the preview in most video editing softwares and you can open a new
composition or drag in clips. So I’ve got a folder on the desktop with a couple video clips
in it and for example, I’m gonna actually highlight
these and throw them in the project media bin which is on the left hand side here. So I’m gonna make sure I have it open and I can actually just throw these clips in our project media bin
and now they’re loaded. We have movie clip 2978 and 2984. So these clips happen to be
1920 by 1080 which I can see when I highlight them
so if I do just drag one onto the timeline, it’ll
create a new composition based on this footage like it says there. So now we have a new 1080 by 1920 standard high definition composition or we could have also went to composition, new composition in the menu on the top and set all these settings. But now that I have the clip here, you can start to see
kind of the basic ways that After Effects is laid out. So you have our layers menu and
you have a bit of a timeline but remember, this isn’t
really working left to right. It’s more so working
up to down and stacking like a composition. So if I take the other clip that I had and dragged that on the timeline as well, you can see we have both of the clips, one on top of the other,
you can’t really see because it goes by layers,
you know top is seen and then the bottom is not
so you can hide visibility and both of these are together. This little green line
shows how long the clip is so this clip of the
flower happens to only be about 7 seconds whereas
the clip of the statues and water fountain happens
to be a little bit longer. And also notice when I
created the composition just by dragging the clip
in, it makes the composition only as long as that clip automatically so if you wanted to change
that, you could also go to composition settings
and you can see here the duration is 10 seconds in this case ’cause the clip was 10 seconds but I could make it 30
seconds and it will be longer. On the bottom, we can scroll left to right and see all that new
space that we’ve added. But what else do we have
going on in our menus? So on the left hand side, we have the project effect controls. On this top side here, we have our menu with tools so the move tool, text tool, different brushes and
rotobrushing which is like a quick selection tool. On the right hand side, we
also have different menus like our brushes tool. If we did have a brush,
we could choose what size and type and paint and color. We also have different effects and presets in this menu and you can also access these in the effects menu so
let’s say I want to add an effect onto this clip,
what I can do is either use a preset that’s set for me
in this right hand side. So these are all different presets. Or I can build my own effect
out and you notice how I did need to highlight this
layer to get that to be active and be able to work on it. So let’s say I just want
to add a simple blur. Let’s add a gaussian blur,
a very basic function that’s in a lot of
programs and you should see once I add this onto
the clip, it’ll pop up in our effects control menu
or panel for us to adjust. So each effect has different
aspects that you can adjust on it so this one has
blurriness which I can increase. And it also has blur dimensions
so I can go horizontal and vertical which will
give us a soft blur, just horizontal or just vertical and these little icons
right here are key frames which you can create animation with. So if I drop down this menu, you can see all the different properties of each layer that you have
and do different things with them so you can see all the effects that are applied onto here, right now just the gaussian blur. You can transform it so
the size, the position, opacity, et cetera. So you know I can turn
the opacity down to 50% and now we get a interesting
blending of these clips. And let me add a simple key frame here. So I’m gonna go to the beginning or wherever I want to start. I can add an anchor point by
clicking on this stopwatch icon and then I can move over
let’s say a couple seconds, make the blurriness go really intense. And you should see a
little diamond is created and then I can move over even more, maybe make it go less intense. So I’ll type in 20 and
this is just one example of some sort of creative
animation that you can do. I don’t know what type of
project you’d be working on but you can see we’ve got the flower
getting blurry, less blurry. I could do the same thing
with key framing animation but that’s just basic key framing. You can look up another
tutorial of mine for more about general key framing principles. But you can see you can stack many effects on top of each other and
beyond just your basic blurs, After Effects has some really
interesting and powerful tools that are not present in your
basic non linear editors like Premiere Pro or Final Cut
so things like CC Burn Film or just random ones like this,
I’ll show you for example, are much more complex in function than a lot of the stuff
you’ll find in other places. So you see this one kind of gives it a burned paper animation
which the same thing I showed you about key frames earlier, you can add the stopwatch
diamonds and make it go from 0 to 100 to act as a cool transition. You can also adjust
different things about this but you can see it stacks
the effects together. You can also drag effects and rearrange the positioning of them
so if I put the blur after the burn, you see
everything gets blurry but if I put the burn after the blur, then the burn is still solid. So keep that in mind. Some more things to
consider in After Effects are that you can create clean
text and motion graphics. So let me go to
composition, new composition to start a new 1920 by 1080
black 30 second composition and it’ll open in a
different composition menu so this is another thing to keep in mind. You can have many
different compositions open at the same time and kind
of play off of one another and they’re all open in tabs down here, kind of like tabs on an internet browser. So in this new composition, I
don’t have to drag any clips or anything in but you
notice that you still have the same project menu so you can have many different compositions
in the same project and have the same media
throughout and the compositions actually pop up as a media object as well but I can click on the
text tool, for example, click there and add text
and move this around. So now you have a text layer that pops up and you still have all the same properties on the text from adjusting the position, opacity, things like that. And just to show you a quick example, let’s go to the effects and presets menu that we pointed out earlier and let’s look for some animation presets for text and we can see there’s
actually a lot of really cool built in presets so for example, we can do animating in
and let’s just choose a fun one here, spin by character. So I can just click and drag this right on to this text object and you can
see it places two key frames two seconds in by default
since this isn’t animate in and if I drop that down,
you can see the animator and all the different
things but if I press play, it’s kind of cheesy looking
but there’s a lot of cool different ones that you
can play around with. Presets are always kind of cheesy looking but here’s a cool one, typewriter. I can click and drag that on and it’ll create the key frames from the point that my timeline cursor was on currently so this’ll add the text letter by letter like a typewriter and you can also go into the effects control of this actual text, the dropdown, and adjust these different animation properties. You can also add shape
layers so if I go to layer, new, shape layer, I can create things either with the rectangle,
ellipse, star, whatever. So I can create rectangles
and then I can use After Effects motion and key framing tools to create animations on these as well so this is a cool way that
you can create lower thirds where things might
smoothly pop in and out, reveal text and all that. So I have different individual tutorials, project by project, little
quick videos for you to check out if you
want to look at creating a lower third or quick selecting an object or learning about camera tracking and different text animation. I don’t want to try to
fit those all in at once but hopefully you’re seeing a little bit of the different tools and menus and you can see the basics of it. We’ve got a preview menu
right here in the middle. We’ve got a layer menu, different tabs of different compositions if we want. Our project media here
which is we can drag and drop things from our desktop wherever. This is where we can keep all
of our media to work with. Our basic timeline, which
we want to be looking at from a top to bottom
standpoint rather than a left to right, yes you can build
things out left to right but it’s not really made for that, it’s a lot less intuitive
to be telling stories with this rather than
making video compositions. So let’s say we want to
export our project or save it, you can always go to
file, save, it’ll save your After Effects
project but we can also go to export, add to render queue. You can see that render
queue that’s been open as a tab this whole tab, it
will add whatever we had sent to the queue and from
here, you can render it. So first you can choose
to output it anywhere on your desktop or
whatever folder you want, you can choose what settings
you want in the output module. So this is actually where
you can get into exporting transparent things in Adobe After Effects especially for motion graphics,
you can choose what channels get outputted, red, green, blue, alpha, red, green, blue and alpha, et cetera, that’s great for exporting lower thirds or different overlays and templates. You can also choose the
actual render settings which you get a lot of
good presets to use here. It depends on what you’re trying to use. You can see this one is just 1920 by 1080, it’s just reading from
my original video clip and kind of outputting
it the best from there. But once you click render,
it’ll actually render out all the different animations, key frames and different things
you did in your timeline and once this blue bar fills up, it’ll make this really cool
noise, probably my favorite sound effect ever is that
render noise in After Effects and you can find the
finished project wherever you exported it or chose to output it to. So this has been a very basic introduction to After Effects, there’s
so many more tools and capabilities that
I didn’t have a chance to get into in this ’cause I
wanted to keep it real simple but hopefully you can see
how the basic layout works. It’s not so scary anymore. You’ve just got the main
things in the middle, your timeline, your layers,
your different dropdowns and key frames and
menus, your project media and all your tools and files and menus. So check out my channel
for project by project different things like camera tracking, the more in depth on key
frames and difference between After Effects and
Premiere Pro and more in depth how to work in between the two. But if you guys enjoyed this video, definitely subscribe to my channel below. I’ve got a video like this
for intro to Photoshop and intro to Premiere Pro if
you’re just starting there and you want a basic
rundown of those programs. And you can also follow me
on social media @justinodisho everywhere on the web like
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter if you want to connect
with me and reach out. Thank you so much for watching and I’ll see you guys in the next one.


  • Reply Trillavision Media November 10, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    Thanks you better teacher than my shitty ass lazy ass ones at community college

  • Reply grnx July 26, 2018 at 3:44 am

    You're a good teacher. Thanks a lot

  • Reply Torcy Klyne Suganob July 26, 2018 at 11:27 am

    This will help my TV broadcasting as me being technical director

  • Reply Texasranger793 August 4, 2018 at 7:52 pm

    Your channel is literally so live-saving – I'd be lost w/out it. Thanks dude, you rock.

  • Reply Kelly Guan August 6, 2018 at 3:35 am

    This is very helpful, thanks!

  • Reply A FlexibleGamer August 14, 2018 at 7:52 pm

    starting my journey today, thanks for the help

  • Reply Kudoshi August 22, 2018 at 10:44 am

    Thanks! Short ,basic ,simple and nicely explained. Understood so much by just this 15 minutes. Very good at explaining thanks

  • Reply Hafsa Omar August 24, 2018 at 4:24 am

    im lowkey still confused , i dont understand why u kept both of the comps like one on top of another shouldnt u move them so they arent layered. like im trying to make a video edit and if i layer them like u did all the clips arent shown ya know? jsjsjs sorry im rly confused.

  • Reply Onu Abah August 25, 2018 at 12:35 am

    I am unable to add clips to mine… Which type of file extension does AE support?

  • Reply Normann Shay August 26, 2018 at 4:28 pm

    thank you my friend just download it and gonna start to play with it but your explanation was great!!

  • Reply original design September 2, 2018 at 2:59 am

    thanks a lot your voice extremely clear to understand , thanks my friend.

  • Reply Oh Yeah Mista Krabs September 2, 2018 at 10:55 pm

    his desktop is clean

  • Reply Zoe Doucette September 4, 2018 at 5:19 pm

    12:25 Id like to understand more about building the timeline in layers rather than left to right. I don't quite understand what you meant, is there a good resource you can recommend to read about it?
    As a newbie, I stage my aftereffects composition in a Gantt Chart way,

  • Reply MJ September 11, 2018 at 7:42 pm

    Super helpful, thank you!

  • Reply Peter Solomon September 15, 2018 at 3:08 am

    Hello Justin Odisho, on another subject do you know how to freeze a part of a still image that is being animated with the Puppet Tool in AE? In the few years I have been using the Puppet Tool I have not found the Starch Tool effectively freezes, or stabilizes selected areas.

    What I believe I need is a plugin that allows me to draw a mask around a section of a video to freeze that section, whilst the rest of the video is allowed free motion. Do you see what I mean? P

  • Reply Marko Gartnar September 19, 2018 at 12:13 pm


  • Reply Charles Wolf 4 September 19, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    ok, one the tutorial is amazing and great, two, how did you get your cursor to have motion blur?! XD

  • Reply xosydneyxo September 23, 2018 at 6:52 pm


  • Reply Saroj Kandel September 25, 2018 at 7:13 am

    Fuck this application, It won’t run properly in my 8gb DDR4 ram core i5 7200U. My dreams just 🔨💣🗯 Crushed

  • Reply iiAlexaz Gxcha September 28, 2018 at 1:16 am

    How do you change the volume? XD I am a beginner..

  • Reply InspiraX1234 September 30, 2018 at 9:55 am


  • Reply iSpike October 1, 2018 at 8:58 pm


  • Reply Lloyd Christmas October 4, 2018 at 6:08 am

    Thanks a lot brother. It really helps.

  • Reply yu muvii October 7, 2018 at 4:53 pm

    really good awesome subbed!

  • Reply Dusty Honey October 14, 2018 at 2:48 am

    I'm looking for more editors to use & this has been really helpful!
    I'm really glad you had the part at the start where you said why you should use it instead of some other editor.

  • Reply Amir October 14, 2018 at 9:57 pm

    jesus christ man. Sorry to say but your voice is painful to follow. Its v monotone and long winded

  • Reply Caleb's Rail Films October 15, 2018 at 12:03 am

    Thank you so much, Justin. This has been a very informative video and has alleviated the stress of learning this program from scratch. I'm teaching myself how to use this program like I have done with Premiere Pro CC 2018 as well. I learnt the very basic skills in 2016 in my media course but we didn't use it for much as I wanted to use it. I've been absolutely petrified about this program from the start. However, I have taken the initiative to learn this program now that I have time in my busy schedule as a starting out professional photographer. This video has been really helpful by far and for that I thank you. I've subscribed as well. I'll check you out on Facebook and Instagram as well. All the best with your projects. Greetings from South Australia. Cheers Caleb

  • Reply Glow Wolf October 18, 2018 at 1:33 pm

    I dont even know how to play my video…

  • Reply Home Boy October 28, 2018 at 10:43 pm

    Hi, I'm Karlie Kloss and fuck knows why I'm a model!

  • Reply Telly Shine October 29, 2018 at 8:26 pm

    It sounds like your about to cry in some parts of the video. Are u ok? 6:32

  • Reply Meesh Nguyen October 31, 2018 at 3:22 pm

    This was awesome!! While watching this, I was like, hold up – is this Kresge?! 😂

  • Reply castrospeaksout November 4, 2018 at 3:33 am

    Thank you so so much man I really appreciate this video, you have explained with clarity opposed to other videos I have watched and for that thank you so much I really appreciate it. I have tried to figure this program out and you have made this so so clear and easy to follow.

  • Reply shady san November 4, 2018 at 10:40 am

    What I really want to know is how do i play the video for preview? 🙁

  • Reply Afrika Ndlovu November 6, 2018 at 12:03 pm

    Thank you

  • Reply Scott November 9, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Finally a Tutorial I can Follow!

  • Reply Bhavani Videos November 12, 2018 at 4:03 am

    excelent teaching

  • Reply alterdruck November 14, 2018 at 4:07 pm

    felt already lazy when switching from power director to cute cut
    *now feels lazier than ever because this. must. take. years-

  • Reply alterdruck November 14, 2018 at 4:20 pm

    this helped me a lot! thanks!!

  • Reply Hadzoni November 15, 2018 at 7:31 pm

    Thanks so much i appriciate you.

  • Reply Petya November 23, 2018 at 4:48 pm


  • Reply Tautulis7 November 23, 2018 at 7:45 pm

    Was hoping on a 101 for those using it for the first time and dont care about filters, effects etc. yet. Cant even understand how to get started after Sony Vegas, this didnt help at all – adjust your misleading title

  • Reply Vikas Pawar November 26, 2018 at 1:15 pm

    Dude this is THE ONE I was looking for thanks 👍💙

  • Reply Faheem Imtiaz November 27, 2018 at 7:51 am

    Hi thank you for great basic tutorial.
    I want to ask one question I made simple text animation and want to export gif with transparent background ? How I can do this. ?

  • Reply Kefir Stories December 7, 2018 at 11:37 am

    Thank you! Clear voice is super!!!

  • Reply vxgcci December 9, 2018 at 12:26 pm

    hi i have a question
    i want to put a gif from pinterest on to my after effect but then something shows up that i cant put that what do i do?

  • Reply Энх-Амгалан мН December 10, 2018 at 9:53 am


  • Reply Pando December 11, 2018 at 1:33 pm

    better than the one that adobe gives u

  • Reply Dleen66 Bedhi December 13, 2018 at 7:05 pm

    Tu galak rawi aw sa3atak bu l hivye mn gut de edit’aka jan kay wak ye di satkame gui xar chnakr👏🏻

  • Reply Celine 361 December 14, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    Hi.. I need your help..

    I have adobe after effects CS6

    All what you have in blue (like the number in the left corner below) is yellow in mine.. i dont know how to do it like yours..

    Because I can’t do something with the graph like others do..

  • Reply Who is Keem December 17, 2018 at 12:38 pm

    great video you explained this very well

  • Reply s hainers December 19, 2018 at 1:10 pm


  • Reply 苏恩惠 December 29, 2018 at 3:30 am

    i just LOVE your video !!!! thank you SO MUCH

  • Reply Matmobu January 5, 2019 at 11:51 pm

    1.25 speed thank me later

  • Reply Shubham Aggarwal January 6, 2019 at 7:58 am

    It would be great, if you provide sample videos for beginners.

  • Reply Gabriel Hall January 9, 2019 at 3:59 am

    can you make ads using Ae ?

  • Reply SOREN KAURIN January 10, 2019 at 9:21 pm

    wow thans so cool thanks thans i can definitily us this for vidos

  • Reply Ian Septian January 11, 2019 at 1:55 pm

    i can't find ellipse tool can you tell me where is it?

  • Reply ツdrowzy January 12, 2019 at 4:19 am

    When I try to import a downloaded file it says error

  • Reply Jugez1337 January 21, 2019 at 12:58 pm

    This video and cursor fluent❤

  • Reply AzovPort January 28, 2019 at 9:48 am

    Like +

  • Reply GEORGE SAULO January 29, 2019 at 1:14 pm


  • Reply Emrah Nalbantoğlu February 7, 2019 at 11:04 am

    Hi, I really wonder how you guys learned(as professionals) After Effects or Premiere pro, yes you do tutorials about that but its never goes too deep, did you buy a course or go to film school?

  • Reply Annemarie Seager February 15, 2019 at 6:04 pm

    thank you – having a great time starting After Effects

  • Reply Raimbi February 21, 2019 at 12:22 am

    how do you go left to right and up and down?

  • Reply St Devon Rai Swing March 1, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    Your voice is so soft and friendly. Thanks for this tutorial

  • Reply Havoc Gaming Channel March 14, 2019 at 7:46 pm

    YouTube is the future of education, and your videos help to prove that. Thanks for the education, Justin!

  • Reply Rizé March 20, 2019 at 10:15 am

    Hey, would you mind making a tutorial for After Effects CC 2019, how to make a clean intro for youtube. Thank a lot, your videos are very helpful.

  • Reply MYGENERASIAN March 22, 2019 at 3:34 am

    When I open After Effects for the first time. I only see the top half of the work page. I can't see any of the bottom half how do I see that? I'm using a macbook pro.

  • Reply LPS Bella Bean March 23, 2019 at 12:58 am

    Sooo helpful!When I first opened after effects and was like "well frick"

  • Reply Chelsea Brünger March 23, 2019 at 2:05 pm

    really helpful:)

  • Reply Ваня Петров April 1, 2019 at 4:47 pm

    Привет увидел русские субтитры и подписался на тебя, сделай видео о том как можно размывать задние слои чтоб один переходил в другой

  • Reply King Of Reaper April 3, 2019 at 10:58 am

    thanks so much

  • Reply Tiefe April 4, 2019 at 12:50 am

    bro the green bar prevents me from reviewing my video how do you remove if you can't after effects is trash

  • Reply ken ulbata April 17, 2019 at 12:15 pm

    How to change the color of the paint brush from history

  • Reply Sherton Gibb April 27, 2019 at 6:41 pm

    People i need help, i want to know how can i do to remove a background color from a lower third, that i create to let it be transparent, something like a PNG on PS. Because when i place it in Premiere Pro, it just cover part of the video, with a black background

    The SW is AE CC 2018.

    Thank You

  • Reply Project J-DogS1994 May 19, 2019 at 10:34 pm

    I have an iMac 27 inch late 2012 with version 10.9.5 Macintosh and a 2.9 GHz Intel Core i5 processor and 8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3 and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M 512 MB Graphics card will this version or any other versions work on my iMac

  • Reply Sarah Ha May 28, 2019 at 9:34 am

    Hello. I was trying to add the burn effect but for some reason it applies itself to the entire clip? can I make it pop in a certain frame only?

  • Reply Samuel Albrecht June 6, 2019 at 1:41 pm

    Thanks man!

  • Reply Sai Aung June 13, 2019 at 5:30 pm

    Bruh can u make another video how to edit hiphop montage cuts ?

  • Reply marzieh rezaee June 20, 2019 at 4:56 pm

    Thanks .

  • Reply Clifton100 June 25, 2019 at 4:57 pm

    Wow, this was an especially good intro. Very smart.

  • Reply Juan Duva July 8, 2019 at 6:51 pm

    Thank you for sharing! very helpful for beginners.

  • Reply 브라크캍Blackcat July 11, 2019 at 9:43 am

    thanks, helps a lot!

  • Reply Itz Gaming Wolf July 16, 2019 at 6:42 am

    When you have full volume on…

    | X X |
    | W |
    | I I |

  • Reply lewbino July 27, 2019 at 11:35 pm

    Hey,i download it and it worked but i wanna ask is sign up free and by sigining in,will it affect the crack?

  • Reply Caroline Guldner August 1, 2019 at 7:24 am

    Brilliant tutorial!!! Thanx Justin!!!

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