The Dark Knight

Learn techniques and workflow used in Adobe After Effects and Illustrator to create the dramatic effect of the Batman icon shattering apart revealing a bright light source behind. Plug-ins used include Knoll Light Factory, Trapcode Particular and Shine. Thanks to Ko Maruyama and Jonas Hummelstrand for creative input.

 

Discuss
  1. MARS
    Reply

    This tute was mind blowing…

    Your attention to detail is surely what makes you stand out.

    Another tutorial worth every cent of watching by JD.

  2. illd
    Reply

    Hail Mary, what an excellent tutorial. Feels like christmas, thank you JD!

  3. guilherme lima
    Reply

    thank’s !!!!

  4. Spiro
    Reply

    For some reason I can’t get it to load. 🙁

  5. Jonas Hummelstrand
    Reply

    Nice one!

    Gotta love those LF Stripes, I use them more than Shine in my broadcast work!

  6. Vasu
    Reply

    nice work john thnx 4 fullfilling my request

  7. Topher Welsh
    Reply

    Hey Spiro, try right clicking, and click Copy Link Location, and then paste that into your address bar.

  8. ban_dido_7
    Reply

    looks great , but the movie is not loading up 🙁

  9. John Dickinson
    Reply

    Try right clicking on the movie link and saving it to your desktop.

  10. Dave
    Reply

    Wont open for me either unfortunately. Tells me it’s it’s in a form quick Time cannot understand even though the extension seems correct. And I have the latest QT updates.

    Bummer, this one looks sweet.

  11. John Dickinson
    Reply

    I’ve just switched the suffix back to mp4 from mov, which may have been causing the problem. Refresh your browser and give it another go.

  12. Spiro
    Reply

    Works for me now! Just finished watching it. Tons of great tips – thanks John!

  13. Dee
    Reply

    Thanks heaps looks great.

  14. kamal98
    Reply

    hey this is great thumbs up 🙂

  15. Josh Johnson
    Reply

    Really fantastic tutorial John. Nnice work on the promo too!

  16. DD
    Reply

    Cool tutorial man
    thanx

  17. paul
    Reply

    brilliant!!! I was just shaking my head at how awesome you are… 🙂 Thank you a million times for sharing your skills…

  18. Bryan
    Reply

    You rock. Seriously. Thank you so very much for your Tutorials. Your work is so appreciated. I have learned so much from your teachings. Keep up the amazing effort.
    God Bless

  19. steve
    Reply

    Thanks a ton! Is that Lightbox or Shadowbox. Very cool.

  20. John Stanowski
    Reply

    Fantastic. So much in one tutorial. I particularly like seeing how you brought Illustrator into the mix. I even picked up some tips with they way you drew curves.

  21. Kenneth Sena
    Reply

    this looks interesting but the movie says coming soon. isn’t this done yet?

  22. yapayzeka
    Reply

    perfect. many thanks.

  23. Ryan Hamilton
    Reply

    Hey folks,
    I tried doing something similar to this, but found I had a problem with my Knoll layers.
    When I add the flares they don’t knock out the black solid, so my shine layer on the bottom doesn’t get seen. I was sure KLF acted like trapcode layers and stuff excluding the solid layer an revealing only the effect. Am I mistaken? I looked several times John at your set up and noticed your Bottom Flares layer didn’t have any blending modes applied.
    Hamilton.

  24. boogums
    Reply

    this is a great tute!

  25. John Dickinson
    Reply

    Hey Ryan, If you are using the latest version of KLF just make sure the bottom layer in the layer stack has “unmult” checked. If you have a previous version you can download the unmult plug-in for free from http://www.redgiantsoftware.com.

  26. Warti
    Reply

    Nice tutorial and a great stunning effect.
    But i have a problem doing this tutorial … and hope you can give me a tip.

    When i try to reflect my shape in Illustrator i dont get a window where i can select Copy.
    When i do reflect it reflect to the other side and my old one dissapear. You know a solution for this ?

    MFG Warti

  27. John Dickinson
    Reply

    Hi Warti, Are you clicking the “copy” button in the Reflect window?

  28. Warti
    Reply

    The reflect Window did not appear … that was my problem.
    But after some tests i figured out to double click the reflect icon to get the window …:)
    I dont often work in Illustrator.
    I can copy it now but it reflects in the middle of my shape axis.
    But this should not be a problem …

    btw. great tutorial ! Very good site for me.

  29. Chicago custom tux
    Reply

    Thanks for the post, this sounds like and interesting tutorial that my friend studying DC would enjoy. I’ll make sure to pass it along to him.

  30. Samtvorik
    Reply

    Thank’s !!!!

  31. aidan
    Reply

    Hey John

    Um this is way to late to be replying but i just wanted to know if this interests you at all.

    My thought was, instead of making a custom shatter map for this effect, would after effects plugin cc pixle polly have worked just as well?

    Sorry, i have been meaning to find this out for myself but i havn’t allowed myself enough “cash” 😉 to try this out when i get home from work.

    thanks

    Aidan

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Hi Aidan, welcome to Motionworks. Pixel Polly is a pretty old effect that has very limited settings. There is only a choice of polygons or squares for shapes and no shatter mapping features. Take a look at it when you find some “cash” and you’ll see what I mean. Nice to see you watch The Business of Design 🙂

  32. aidan
    Reply

    Cool, thanks heaps John!

    Yeah I hadn’t been on in a while and saw the new series you’ve done, watched every episode that night.

    Very cool way to go about building a career out of what you love to do. I have been putting those points into practice already, and in my regular job too.

    Got me thinking my brother and I should work together.

    Looking forward to the next episode.

    Cheers.

    Aidan

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Hey Aidan, I’m really pleased to hear you are finding value in The Business of Design. To have a career you love is a true blessing, and working with your brother as I do, is a rewarding experience. All the best, John.

  33. Andres
    Reply

    Excelent!!! you are very talented. Add to my favorite.
    Saludos

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Thankyou Andres and best wishes, John.

  34. Paul T
    Reply

    Hi John,
    Awesome tutorial. I have learnt so many new techniques from it. I originally found out about customer shatter maps from total training for AE 6. Brian Maffitt spends over an hour going through the shatter effect and it’s great to see how the effect is producing such inspirational work. All the best, Paul.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Hi Paul T, I remember watching Total AE 6 as well. Sadly there really isn’t that kind of in-depth training available these days. Brian told me the other day how he was blown away that people are still getting so much value out of effects such as Shatter that he created over a decade ago. All the best, John.

  35. Mark
    Reply

    Hey, great tutorial. So did you do the actual teaser trailer for the Dark Knight?

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Thanks Mark. No, this was a promo for pay-per-view here in Australia. Best, John.

  36. Mark
    Reply

    Oh cool man, that’s awesome. I love this Dark Knight teaser, and I wanted to know of a good and easy way to do it, so this tutorial is great help! Thanks.

    I’ve used the shatter effect before but like you prior, didn’t know it could do the things it could do! Haha. Thanks man, great help! I know what I’ll be screwing around with tonight.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UWw0ov-cAUg – Dark Knight teaser.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Cool Mark, glad you’ve found it useful.

  37. Poljoprivreda
    Reply

    perfect. many thanks.

  38. John Dickinson
    Reply

    You’re welcome Matt. Best wishes, John.

  39. Remington M
    Reply

    Hey John! I watched this the other day, and you mentioned that to create the custom bat particles, theres a making it look great episode and I forgot which one it was and don’t want to destroy my internets bandwidth loading the whole video again to find out what it was.

    • John Dickinson
      Reply

      Hi Remington, it’s the Butterfly Man tutorial. Best wishes, John.

      • Remington M
        Reply

        Awesome, thanks! I just bought it and its downloading as we speak. Thanks for the speedy response!

  40. Jonas
    Reply

    Hello, Jhon:
    I can’t see the video. The screen gets green, but I can hear your voice. What can I do? If is not a problem, could you send it to me by e-mail, or upload it to a server?
    Please, answer.

    P/D: I’m sorry if my english is not good.

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