Ae Experiment 3

Suggested for this Experiment
  • Cell Pattern
  • CC Glue Gun
  • CC Light Rays

Congratulations again to everyone who completed After Effects Experiment 2, the results are outstanding. The variety of styles that can be created from just two effects is staggering, and most importantly every one of them is unique and fresh, well done!

For Experiment 3 we are going to stick with After Effects’ Generate category, this time focussing on Cell Pattern, CC Glue Gun and CC Light Rays. Use only those three effects applied to a Solid Layer and don’t use the Brainstorm Tool! Take 30 minutes to explore the effects and post a JPG in the comments. I can’t wait to see your experiments!

Discuss
  1. Daniele
    Reply

    Hi John, thanks for this opportunity. I’ve done the following graphic with the three effects. I hope you liked it!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      I like the dual layered look Daniele.

  2. kali
    Reply

    Thanks John for this new exercise!I Like the depth on yours!:)

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Thanks Kali, your’s a cool sci-fi feel, very nice!

  3. Dafx
    Reply

    Hi !

    What a good idea of this AE experiment i love it !! So this is my test in 38 minutes 🙂 . Thank you !!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Great job Dafx, I like how you’ve used multiple Light Rays with various colours as highlights on the text.

  4. Dominic Pons
    Reply

    This is just so fun !! Here’s my go !

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Well done Dominic, the crystals fading off gives it depth.

  5. Sebastien
    Reply

    I’ve just discovered this great exercise !! This is an awesome idea. We should make more games like that. Meanwhile this is my result (1 Cell Pattern, 1 Glue Gun, 14 Light rays).

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Terrific Sebastie, it reminds me of both something cellular and planetary. Love it.

  6. Jason L
    Reply

    First upload attempt didn’t get my pic in. 🙂

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Interesting combination of organic and angular Jason.

  7. Jim Hines
    Reply

    Really cool exercises. I did the second one w/o posting so I thought I would contribute this time around.

    Keep up the great site!!!!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      This has planetary feel too Jim, well done.

  8. Mark Shingleton
    Reply

    Lovin it!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Nice one Mark, I like the symmetry.

  9. Andrew Oborn
    Reply

    Alien Dawn.
    Good fun, and loving what others are coming up with!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Very nice Andrew!

  10. Steve
    Reply

    Awesome exercise. Great way to re discover some great effects !

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      I agree Steve, I don’t remember the last time I used Glue Gun! Nice work.

  11. Simon
    Reply

    Great way to fire up a bit of creativity on a Monday morning. Thanks John.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Looking good Simon, like some kind of meteor entering the atmosphere.

  12. Phil
    Reply

    cheated a bit by adding some contrast at the end 😉

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Really nice look Phil and thanks for telling us about adding contrast.

  13. Stew
    Reply

    Thanks John. Loving these exercises!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Great effort Stew.

  14. Mathias Möhl
    Reply

    Great idea! Here is my experiment.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Great to see your experiment Mathias, it looks like some kind of blobby alien.

  15. Ricardo Ferreira
    Reply

    This is my go

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Interesting look Ricardo, well done.

  16. Chris Oliver
    Reply

    I love these.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Looking good Chris, it amazes me how different all of these looks are.

  17. Chris Oliver
    Reply

    Second go.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      This one has fascinating look with lovely subtle lighting, well done.

  18. Leonardo
    Reply

    First try

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Lovely Leonardo. Nice subtle use of Cell Pattern to add texture.

  19. Michael Zirin
    Reply

    fun stuff!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Wow Michael this is really different!

      • Michael Zirin
        Reply

        Thanks, i just found out about these experiments. Thank you for all you do. Looking forward to more!

  20. Torus
    Reply

    That was fun 🙂

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Amazing Torus, how did you get that tangled string look?

      • Torus
        Reply

        Thx.

        I animate the “Brush Position” with a wiggle, a tiny “stroke Width” and go to the end of my 3 minutes composition.

        • John Dickinson
          Reply

          Thanks for the settings Torus.

    • Michael Zirin
      Reply

      Yeah really cool technique here

  21. David Byrne
    Reply

    Hey John, great fun working this out. Quite quickly went through a few variations, which I guess is the point and the last one was this, which was by far my favourite and by a happy coincidence, the quickest to make! Just shows what you can do with just three effects on a Solid. Fantastic experiment to keep those creative muscles flexing rather than relying on the tied and tested tropes.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Great organic look David and you’re right, there are millions of looks waiting to be created, it just takes a little play time!

      • David Byrne
        Reply

        Thanks John, also I should have noted the method which was essentially A Cell Pattern to get the Organic look, 2 x Light Rays used to ‘project’ a replication of the cell pattern. 3 x Glue Gun with keyframing position, also keyframing Stroke Width to create the drip sort of look. then finally another two Light rays on each top and bottom shapes to add a kind of nucleus glow inside.

  22. Richard Squires
    Reply

    Here’s what I got up to. I did actually start out totally differently to what it end up as. I was going for a mercury look, but this was more striking. A really fun project and it really shows that there is an unlimited amount of things you can do with After Effects. If only we had the time!!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Good on you for making time Richard, this is a fantastic look!

      • Richard Squires
        Reply

        Never used the glue gun, but it could come in handy. Good fun.

  23. Jim Malmstrom
    Reply

    Here ya go!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Well done Jim, good on you for taking the time.

  24. Evan Morgan
    Reply

    Ha! This takes me back to my youth (mirror balls)!

    • Evan Morgan
      Reply

      I wasn’t even thinking about the addition of animation and how that would affect the final outcome (which is pretty silly, considering AE is meant to be an animation tool). So here’s virtually the same setup, except I’ve decreased the CC Glue Gun brush size and added a random motion to it.

      • John Dickinson
        Reply

        Very nice Evan thanks for including your additional steps, it helps us all to learn more!

  25. Andy Needham
    Reply

    Here’s my effort.

    Effects list: Cell Pattern > CC Glue Gun > CC Light Rays x 2 > CC Glue Gun > CC Light Rays x 9

    The second CC Glue Gun reigned in the brightness of the light rays.

    John, this is a really great idea to experiment with seldom used plugins! I would like to add a bit colour correction to this to really finish it off. Perhaps in future experiments we could add one Curves effect to the end?

    Cheers,
    Andy

    • Andy Needham
      Reply

      Here it is again with the curves effect applied (and a little noise).

      • John Dickinson
        Reply

        Curves and noise definitely help finish the look. Thanks for posting both.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Hey Andy, what I’m aiming to do here is restrict us to certain effects to force us to be more creative within those limitations without relying on our hero effects 🙂

  26. Charles
    Reply

    Really great idea John. Wanted to continue after 30m.

    Thanks,
    Charles

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Yeah I know right Charles, it’s hard to stop. I like the mosaic tile style and colours of yours.

  27. Mathieu
    Reply

    Experimentation Assignment 3

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Got a nice shattered style there Mathieu! I also like the icy feel.

  28. adrian
    Reply

    i like these little projects john, maybe some short animated ones in the future will be good. regards

  29. rayrayato
    Reply

    Hi John,

    Here’s one more. Fun to play around, I’ve never used glue gun before.

  30. Doug
    Reply

    Fun exercise!

  31. Alex S.
    Reply

    One instance of each effect: Cell Pattern (for crystaline texture) > Glue Gun (as particle generator with brush position animated in a spiral using expressions) > Light Rays (for colorization)

  32. Chad
    Reply

    Here’s mine. 20 minutes…………

  33. Chris
    Reply

    I really liked the looks of yours John so had a go at recreating it – very enjoyable exercise too!

  34. Scott Cornell
    Reply

    Great stuff!

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Great effort Scott.

  35. Matthias Dahm
    Reply

    a bit like water or something..

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      I love this Matthias, it does indeed look like water or ice.

  36. Doyle
    Reply

    “Dusk and Dawn.” I liked this one, it was particularly hard. I used 5 glue guns, 1 cell pattern, and 6 light rays.

  37. Daniel Salander
    Reply

    No need to buy Light Factory, make your own flares.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Nice Daniel!

  38. boot-cheese-3000
    Reply

    Excuse my ignorance but I don’t get or overstand these experiments you have posted here. I thought there would be a tutorial linked to these but apparently I was wrong. Are these variations of this tutorial that you did

    /experimenting-in-after-effects/

    or is it meant for intermediate to advanced users? I can honestly say I’m in between beginner-to-intermediate since I took a class on it a few years ago and am pretty familiar with it seeing that I use it for post-processing my music videos. I do want to experiment more with AE, esp the audio receptive/real-time graphics aspect of the software. I also know you can do the same with Cinema4D which I do plan to work on soon as well.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      These experiments aren’t tutorials but rather an opportunity for you to explore After Effects and Cinema 4D using my personal experiment guidelines, then share your results with the community. Spending time experimenting helps cultivate your own personal, individual style.

  39. boot-cheese-3000
    Reply

    Well is there a tutorial I can start with as a base like the link I posted or are there others that you authored that can point me in the right direction? Maybe one from another site (no offense, you have some very cool stuff here that I can’t WAIT to sink my teeth into)………….

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      There are no tutorials for these experiments, the idea is to explore the software and see where it takes you. If you’re a beginner I recommend checking out Lynda.com, Totaltraining.com and digital-tutors.com.

  40. Joe Nicklo
    Reply

    Here you go.

  41. shashi
    Reply

    hi John

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      That’s a really intricate pattern Shashi, great job!

      • shashi
        Reply

        thank you john

  42. Tim
    Reply

    I’m a bit late to the party, but it’s fun

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      This one is looking really good.

  43. Kyle Daily
    Reply

    It’s been great going back through these experiments. I polished the look off in photoshop with a glow, curves, noise and lens blur. Is the point to strictly limit yourself to the effects listed to force creative solutions to make things look good? Or is it more of a jumping off point.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      I guess it’s a bit of both Kyle. I like to restrict myself to the listed effects and see what I can make first.

  44. Michael
    Reply

    Here is a take I came up with. Enjoyed this one a bit more took a little more than 30 minutes.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      An interesting planetary look!

  45. Sierra
    Reply

    Fun Experiment

  46. Ryan Blackwell
    Reply

    I love these experiments. Late to the party, but whatever – thanks for hosting! Here’s mine – 1 cell, 1 glue, 6 light rays.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Welcome to the experiments Ryan.

  47. Joe B
    Reply

    Thanks for the motivation. Here’s another one…

  48. Zerg
    Reply

    Hello, this is my first try with Motionworks experiments. Here is my simple try. Has one Cell Pattern, one CC Glue Gun and one CC Light Rays.
    It is very basic. Though I created a complete video with Experiment 3, + some added extras in the video which include two media footage and some Audio to Keyframes. Check it out here https://youtu.be/TcKeFnNRTko

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Some kind of organic disco ball, well done Zerg.

  49. Dean
    Reply

    Had a lot of during a short break at work and came up with this.

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