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Animate like Cyriak in After Effects Part Deux | Hands & Eyes & Mouths

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Here are some techniques you can use to create animations like Cyriak in After Effects.

If you're looking to master the art of strange things in After Effects then look no father than Cyriak's work. He is the master of weird, and there's nothing that makes Joey smile more than watching Cyriak animate a cow turning into a spider. Seriously, that happens. In this lesson Joey is going to break down another one of Cyriak's strange creations to show you one way that you can create something unique and strange in After Effects. Sometimes there is no plugin, it's just hard work and brute force, and that's exactly what this lesson is going to take.

Download this Cyriak-inspired After Effects file below!


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Tutorial Full Transcript Below 👇:

Joey Korenman (00:00:00): Hi!

Joey Korenman (00:00:22): What's up Joey here at School of Motion and welcome to day 27 of 30 days of after effects. I want to give a huge shout out to emotion, graphics, artists that I love and respect, and that is Cyriak. Now, if you're unfamiliar with his work, please go to his YouTube channel right now and just watch at least a dozen of his videos. Don't do it right before you go to sleep, though. That's a bad idea. Cyriak has this amazing brain that comes up with this really weird stuff. And what I love about it is that he does it all in after effects, just using brute force. For the most part, there's not like a trick to what he does. He's just very precise and very patient. And he does a ton of roto and tracking and hand animation. And it's very, very hard and very, very time consuming.

Joey Korenman (00:01:02): That's why most people don't do it. It's just too hard. So I want to show you how I made this crazy thing behind me, which was inspired by one of his videos. You're going to see how much work it takes, but hopefully you're going to learn some cool tricks and maybe get a new appreciation for Cyriak's work. Don't forget to sign up for a free student account. So you can grab the project files from this lesson, as well as assets from any other lesson on school emotion. Now let's hop into after effects and get started.

Joey Korenman (00:01:30): So this is the, uh, the masterpiece that we're going to be creating here. Uh, and I don't know this kind of, this fits my sense of humor, which I think is why I love Cyriak's work so much. I want to show you the piece of his, that, um, that I was sort of inspired by. Um, and I wanted to recreate for this video. Uh, so it starts with him, you know, staring at you for an awkwardly long period of time before his head turns into this weird crab monster. And, uh, there's a lot of, it's not a thing Cyriak kind of does in his work. He's kind of has a lot of these mouths and tongues and weird eyes and weird spots. And, uh, he seems to be obsessed with, um, body parts being used in ways they weren't meant to be used. Um, I want to point out one thing, which is at the very beginning of this animation here, where the head turns into the hand, it's done in a very slick way.

Joey Korenman (00:02:22): And to me, what this looks like is a plugin called R E flex, which is it sort of lets you do really, really high-end morphing in after effects. And I don't have that plugin and it costs $600. So I did this a different way, but I wanted to point that out. That's one of, and I could be wrong. Um, Cyriak is known for doing things that just take a really long time and doing a lot of hand rotoscoping and moving. So maybe he built this effect by hand, but it looks like, uh, like our flex. Um, and I just wanted to point that out because I do my effect a little differently. I have the monster come of my mouth, uh, so that I could avoid having to use the morphing plugin. So just so you guys know, so let's, uh, let's start just by looking at the footage I shot.

Joey Korenman (00:03:10): So here's the main piece of footage, just me sitting against the wall. And I did this, I don't know, 10 times, uh, before I settled on a take that I liked. Um, so step one is, I don't know, maybe you need to drink a little bit or, or if you're like me, you just, you have no shame. And so you're happy to get in front of a camera and do this. Um, and I didn't do anything to this footage yet. This is just straight footage. Um, then I started shooting all the parts of the monster I was going to need. So here's the shot of the hand. Now this chair here, this is actually like a camping chair that I had kicking around and it just happened to be like the perfect chroma green color. Um, you know, I'm shooting these videos in my spare bedroom at this point.

Joey Korenman (00:03:56): So I don't have a studio. Um, I could've gone over to Ringling and use their green screen studio, but I, you know, it was kind of late when I was doing this. So, um, use whatever you got. I mean, one of the things about Siri ax videos, a lot of them is they don't look super polished and super slick. Um, you know, they, they look sort of hand done and that's one of the things that, that makes them so cool and gives them a neat quality. So, uh, all I did was, you know, open my hand, wiggle my fingers around and then close my hand. Now you'll notice I drew a little X on my wrist. I don't normally have an X on my wrist. And I did that because, um, I knew that, you know, when I shot this, my hand was going to move around a little bit.

Joey Korenman (00:04:38): I tried to hold it very, very still, and I didn't know K job, but it does move a little bit. And I knew that in the final video, I didn't want the motion of the hand to come from my wrist wiggling around. I wanted it to look like those hands were stuck to the face. So I needed to remove all of the motion. You know, the, the sort of just the natural wiggling motion of my hand. And so the way you do that is you stabilize the footage. And that's why I put an X there thinking, Hey, if I need to stabilize the footage, I'll have a nice little tracking marker. So let me show you how you do that. What you do is you, you first trim your footage. So you're only gonna stabilize the piece you need. So I've already trimmed my comp and this is all the footage I need to stabilize.

Joey Korenman (00:05:20): Double-click your layer. And it opens up a layer of viewer. And I've talked about this before, the difference between a composition viewer, which is what you normally look at and a layer viewer, which just lets you look at your footage, but it also allows you to paint and do tracking. So here's my tracking controls. And if you don't see them go up to window and hit this tracker button, and I'm just going to say stabilize motion. Um, now if you're, if you're not familiar with tracking and stabilizing, uh, in general, you can, you can track or stabilize three things, position, rotation, and scale. And you can, you can stabilize all three, two of the three or one of the three in this case. I only need to stabilize position because my, my hand isn't getting closer and further away from the camera. It's not rotating too badly.

Joey Korenman (00:06:11): I just want to take out the motion of the position. Okay? So that's why there's only one check box. And if you're only stabilizing one of these features, you only need one tracker. So here's my track point. Now you see the first thing I did was I expanded it and, uh, really quickly, I don't want to spend too much time on this, but this inner box, this is the feature that is going to be tracked. Okay. So I need to line that up with the X and you can, you can give it a little bit of extra room like this and it will, it will sort of have more information to track the bigger this box, the more pixels will be tracked. This outer box is how, how far away from this box should I look on each subsequent frame? So if there's a ton of motion, I may need a big box, but there's not a lot of motion.

Joey Korenman (00:06:56): So I'm gonna leave this kind of small and the bigger this box, the longer it takes to track, it'll just take more processing. So now we've got this set up, we'll hit this little play button it's going to track forward and I will pause the video. So you guys don't have to watch this whole thing. All right. So tracking's done. And we now have, um, you know, a good tracking point on this. You can see it track that X perfectly and you can see the motion as it moves up and down. So once you've done that you hit apply. Okay. And now it's going to bring back up your composition viewer. And if you look on the layer and you hit you, you're going to see there's a key frame on every single frame. And if I hit space bar and just sort of let this play through, you'll see that now my footage actually moves around.

Joey Korenman (00:07:36): You can see that, uh, after effects is literally moving the footage so that this point never moves on screen. All right. And so the net effect is it's creating this awesome perfectly, still looking footage of my hand. Now that I've done that I'm going to comp this and I'll just call this hand pre-con okay. And, uh, and before I do that, I just want to make sure that I'm actually working on a copy of my hand and not on the actual hands Lumina. I'm just going to dive into this really quickly. You'll get a little sneak preview of what's what's about to happen, and this should look pretty familiar to you. Okay, cool. So, uh, now that I have pre-concept, uh, the stabilized footage, all right, I'm going to do the same king procedure that I did in the tracking and king series a with the Baltimore Orioles, that was part of 30 days of after effects. So first I just do, um, you know, a big kind of rough garbage mat and try to get rid of, you know, what I can, here we go.

Joey Korenman (00:08:46): Right. And I don't want to keep any of this black part of the chair, just the green part of the chair, and I'm not. And I wasn't, I knew I wasn't going to keep my wrist. I was only going to keep the hand. All right. And now with that, you know, with that step, then you can really see how, um, you know, how well that stabilized, you know, the hand looks like it's just totally locked into place. So stabilizing, I think I'm pretty sure stabilizing is, is a very common tool that Cyriak uses when he does his work. Um, and you need to kind of scrub through the footage because you'll see the black parts of that chair can kind of sneak back into the frame every once in a while. Okay. So that's good. All right. So now that I've got that garbage mask, now I'm going to go back into my obsolete effect group here, and I'm going to use the color key.

Joey Korenman (00:09:34): Um, if you haven't watched the king and tracking tutorials, uh, in the, in the Baltimore Oriel series, you may want to watch that first because this king technique that I'm using, it's the exact same one that I go into detail in that video. So you may want to watch that cause I'm going to kind of fly through it here. Uh, so I'm just doing a quick color key, and I'm going to make sure I pick a green color. That's close to the hand because that's really what I want to get rid of. There we go. Just get it, get rid of it as much as we can there. Okay. And then I'm gonna use my edge thin and pull those edges back out. And I want to make sure that I'm just getting rid of as much green as possible. Uh, another thing you can do cause you got these little, these little guys out here, um, you know, that, that I couldn't really get rid of without eating away too much of the hand.

Joey Korenman (00:10:23): What you can do is you can duplicate this color key and reset it. And on the copy of the color key, you can just pick the other color and then up the color tolerance, that's there go until it goes away. So you can double up that color key to help get rid of more stuff and then use that edge. Then again, let's see here. All right, now I've eaten away a bunch of the hand and the finger here. So what I'm also going to do is I'm going to add a mat simple choker and just expand that mat out a little bit. Cool. So now we've got the world's tightest garbage mat around the hand, and you saw that, that didn't take very long. You know, that's like a really tight Rodo. So now I'm going to pre-com this, and I'm going to make this a guide layer, this magenta solid here, um, because it makes it really easy to see if my key is working, but I don't want to forget about it and have it show up in my final comp.

Joey Korenman (00:11:19): So there you go. So let's, pre-camp this now and we'll call this garbage matted and now we can use key light. So we'll go to key lights, let's go to a frame like this, and I'm going to pick that green screen color. I'm going to go into screen mat and let's take a look here. All right. And you know, this is not, uh, this is not going to be a perfect key because I shot it against a camping chair. But, um, you know, I'm going to use some of these settings here and I'm just probably going to have to crank them quite a bit. So first I'm going to do what I did in the last video where I turned this exposure way up, so it can actually see better how much, uh, you know, garbage is in the back there. I need to get rid of.

Joey Korenman (00:12:05): Then I use the clip black to get rid of a bunch of that. Then I'll go back to my normal exposure. Um, and there's no holes in the mat here that I'm seeing really the problem is this kind of junk in there. Right. Um, and that's happening because of the shadow of my hand was casting on the camping chair. So if we look at the final result, you can see that there's a bunch of garbage in there. So what I probably want to do is, um, push that clip black even a little bit further and try and get rid of some of that. And it's going to make my edges a little bit crunchy, but that's okay. All right. So I'm really pushing that clip black. I don't need to touch the clip right now. The edges still look kind of gross. So what I'm going to do is I'm actually going to shrink the mat a little bit.

Joey Korenman (00:12:48): Okay. So I'm just using the shrink grow control here. And if you shrink the mat, see if I grow it and then I shrink it, you can see exactly what it does and you know, the fingers are going to be moving around pretty quickly. And, you know, I just needed to try and get as good a result as I can. Another thing you can use is this D spot stuff, D spot black and D spot white. Um, if I D spot the black, you'll see that it sort of brings back some detail here. If I D spot the whites, it gets rid of some of that. It kind of smooths that out a little bit. All right. And so now you can see that there's still kind of some Schmitz in there. Um, but our edges look a lot smoother and it's actually not, you know, for, for our purposes, it's gonna work just fine.

Joey Korenman (00:13:34): Uh, this black stuff, that's kind of, you know, that you're seeing in between the fingers. I can try to push the clip black a little bit more, try to get rid of a little bit more of it. There we go. Now I want to stress. This is not, you don't generally want to push the values of this hard when you're keying, but in this case, because I didn't really shoot this on a green screen, this was against the camping chair. Uh, you know, I kind of had to do what I had to do. Um, you can also see if you look right here, like on the knuckles, there is, uh, there's kind of a greenish tint, which is the green spill, right? When you shoot something against a green background, a lot of times the color of that green background is gonna spill onto, um, onto your subject.

Joey Korenman (00:14:16): And it's going to add a green color to it. And Keela usually does a pretty good job of getting rid of it. Um, but because this wasn't a real green screen and I've crushed these values so much, there's still a little bit in there. Um, so one, one quick, little trick you can do is you can add a hue and saturation effect and switch the channel controls from master to greens, and then just pull some saturation out of it. Um, and let's see if, if the green still there, I have a feeling when it's moving, you won't even be able to see it. Um, but you know, I'm holding my mouse over these pixels and I'm looking up here at the values, uh, and they're getting in those colors are pretty neutral now. So I think that that helped. All right, so now we've got one hand, we've got a hand keyed out and I'm just going to duplicate it to create our little hand monster.

Joey Korenman (00:15:07): All right. Now let's just remember what we did. We stabilized the hand, we did a garbage mat and now we have used key light. All right. And we've gotten our hand nice and keyed, and it kind of looks like a what's someone, remind me, what's the hands name in the Adams family, the hand that walks around, maybe that's how they did this. Okay. So, so now what I want to do is I'm going to make a new comp and I'm going to start building out the monster. So let me make a 1920 by 10 80 comp here. We'll call this monster.

Joey Korenman (00:15:39): Alright. And I'm going to drag my hand footage comp, drag that into monster. All right. So here's our hand and let's scoot it over like this. Now what I want is I just want the hand, I don't really want the wrist. So what I'm going to do is I'm just going to draw a mask around the wrist like this, and I'm going to set that mass to subtract, and I'm going to feather a little bit, and I'm going to put a key frame on it. So option M and I'm just going to kind of play through, let me switch this to half rest. So it doesn't take a million years. All right. And what you want to do is just sort of, you know, again, this is going to be moving really fast. Um, and, and you, you're going to be able to get away with a lot, but you want to try and you want to try and just get rid of the risk so that when you duplicate this hand and you have two of them, uh, it just looks like hands and it doesn't look like, you know, two arms with hands on them.

Joey Korenman (00:16:45): Um, you know, a lot it'd be because we're like making a weird sort of creature out of body parts. I think the, the more different the body parts look from the way they normally look in real life. I think the better off we're going to get our result to look, okay. So I'm just doing this really fast, but you can see now we've got our hand, uh, kind of, you know, kind of separated out. So let's scale this hand down a little bit, scoot this over, and now let's just duplicate this hand and I'm going to scale the copy negative on the X axis and scoot it over. Okay. So now we've got, now I've got something like this and let's let's name these. So this hand, this top hand is the right hand. So I'm going to say right dash hand, and then up here, you've got left dash hand.

Joey Korenman (00:17:35): If I can type, here we go. Okay. And you can see that when they're, they're sitting around wiggling like this, because we stabilized it, the hands are really still and, and kind of blend together. And it's really creepy. Like, and I didn't get this when I did the demo that you guys saw at the beginning of the video, but that little notch in your hand is creating this really kind of creepy, disgusting little area there. Um, all right. So at the beginning of the animation, you got to figure out where you want those hands to be. Okay. So, um, you know, I sort of had them like this. Okay. Now, if you go like this and you, and you kind of layer one hand over another, um, it starts to look like, you know, a picture of a hand stuck on top of another picture of a hand.

Joey Korenman (00:18:29): So another thing I did was, um, let me lock this mask here. And I'm actually going to go up to layer a mask and say, hide locked masks. This is a cool trick. If you're gonna have multiple masks on a layer mask, you can, you can go to layer, mask, hide lock masks, and then whenever you lock a mask, it won't show up anymore. And that can, that can just visually make it a lot easier to look at. And what I did was, um, I massed out just sort of roughly around the fingers here and subtract that mask up. I did it on the wrong hand. I need to do it on the right hand. And the reason I did this was because I wanted those two hands to really look more like what Cyriak had done, where it was sort of like interlocking fingers, uh, and you know, something like this.

Joey Korenman (00:19:24): And it looked a little bit more like there were actually two hands touching on, so we locked this mask. Let me feather this one a little bit. Right. I wanted something a little bit more like that at the beginning of this. And then once the hand separated, they can, they can look, you know, the way that they already look. All right. So, uh, so I'm going to put a masky frame there. So just option M and then I'm going to move forward and just sort of adjust this and, and I'm doing this pretty rough for you guys. Cause I don't wanna, I don't want to spend a million years having you watch me Rodo but just know that if you're going to try and do this, it just takes all long time. He really have to like, you really have to love what you're doing. Um, and, and actually do the work of rotoscoping. Right. So I'm just going to kind of go through here as the hand separate, and I'm gonna move the mask.

Joey Korenman (00:20:22): There we go. Right. So then it just kinda cuts into this right hand and creates a nice little, you know, nice little seam and you know, like right here, like where the, where this hand we're sort of, the meat of this hand is coming over this hand, I may want to come in and, and just adjust the mask to erase that part. And what you're going for is just, you want it look really smooth and creepy. Like, like the skin is just blending together like that. There we go. All right. And so now at the beginning, because we, we, you know, if I turn this mask off, you can see, uh, that by using that mask and this happens so quick, but it just sort of makes it look a little bit more like two hands, you know, that are kind of together. And then they open up and form this weird thing. Uh, another thing you could try too, is I could knock the right hands. Uh, I could, I could knock this back, like maybe three frames, someone hold option and hit page up three times. And now what you're going to get is you're going to get a slightly offset timing on the hands too. Um, and you could offset them even more.

Joey Korenman (00:21:33): Maybe not that much. You want him to open a roughly at the same time, but, but you want them to just move a little bit differently. Here we go. All right. So now you get a nice little bit of offset between them and you can see, sorry. Super creepy. All right. So now we've got our hands and we would have to do the same thing at the end, too. You know, when, when the hands come back together like this, right. Um, one of the things that that I had to do was because I didn't, I didn't actually animate, I didn't rotate my hands enough at the end. So at the end year, what I did was I just put position key frames on these two layers and then went forward until the hands turned about as far as they're going to turn. And then I just scoot them closer together.

Joey Korenman (00:22:21): Right. So that they're more in the arrangement. They were at the beginning and just put a little east key frame on there and, you know, I would need to go back in and create the mask and everything so that this, this kind of covers up the hand again. Um, so there's a lot of just manual masking and tweaking that's involved. Okay. But now we've got the hand set up, so now let's move on to the mouth. So here's the mouth footage. I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. You guys now I've already stabilized this. You can see it's already stabilized. Okay. And so once it's stabilized, you pre-camp it. And you can say mouth stable and you should, you should spell stable. Right. You shouldn't do it. Like I just did it. So, um, so once you've done that and, and by the way to stabilize it, I think I used like a nostril or something.

Joey Korenman (00:23:11): I just needed something that wasn't really moving. Uh, and so now what you can do is let's go forward to a frame where the mouth is open and let's just, let's just draw a mask around it. And, you know, I, you want to make sure that you give the mask enough's enough room on the sides. Cause I'm sticking my tongue out and I don't want the tongue to get cut off, but I wanted it to be pretty tight on the lips on the top and the bottom so that those could just kind of blend into the hand. Um, and I, I don't know, like I can grow a beard really fast, so there's some stubble on my face and I knew that that wouldn't really blend in with the hand very well. Um, so I, you know, I just made sure to do the top and the bottom of the lips kinda tight and then leave a little room on the sides like this.

Joey Korenman (00:24:03): So the tongue doesn't get clipped. Okay. And then all you have to do is you do have to put some key frames on the mask path so that when the mouth closes, right, we can, we can close that up, just like that. So again, a lot of, you know, tedious Rodo, um, I mean, you know, if you, if you, if you guys actually go through the process and recreate this, and then you go watch one of Siri, X videos, you're going to have a huge appreciation for what he does, because the amount of work it takes is insane. Okay. So that's not bad. Okay, cool. And then we'll just do it on the beginning too. So there's the mouth. I'm gonna add a, um, add a key frame there I go to the beginning and then I'll just copy this key frame since it should be fairly close and we'll just kind of go forward and we'll help this out a little bit on this frame.

Joey Korenman (00:25:07): All right. And we're going to feather the mask of course, to help it blend in. Okay. There you go. And then we'll just feather, this maybe like 30 pixels and there's our mouth footage. It's really creepy when you just see the mouth. All right. So now let's go back to our monster pre-camp and when these hands open, we're going to want that, we're going to want that mouth footage on the hand. All right. Now you can see that when I shot this, um, you know, I must've changed the, the focal length of the lens or something because the, um, the exposure changed. And so now this doesn't match at all. So what I first needed to do is color correct it. And, you know, luckily I shot this under the exact same lighting in the same room. So really it should just be a matter of adjusting the overall levels.

Joey Korenman (00:26:01): I shouldn't have to do too much actual color correction. Um, you know, I shouldn't have to mess with like the blue and the red and the green channels. I should just be able to do an overall color correction. You can see now just by brightening it overall. Um, I've gotten it to match a lot better and you can see here where the stubble is going into the hand. Oh goodness. So I'm going to rotate this 90 degrees cause I wanted it to look kind of like Siri acts where you kind of had this vertical mouth right in the middle. All right. There you go. That's fantastic. It's just so fantastic. Okay. And, uh, and then here at the beginning, you could see a, have the, so I want the mouth right in the middle, but it kind of opens off to one side. Right. Cause that's the way a Joe works. So I'm going to kind of split the difference. Let me just knock this over a little bit like that.

Joey Korenman (00:26:54): All right. That works cool. All right. And I'll scale this up a little bit. Here we go. All right. So we've got our mouth and you know, what I'm going to do just for now is I'm just going to go to the first frame where that mouth should appear, which is probably somewhere in here. And I'm going to hit option left bracket to just trim that layer because on this frame, right, the, the fingers are covering it up and then it should be revealed by the fingers. And I'm going to show you a cool trick, um, to kind of make the Rodo for this a little bit easier. All right. Because we're getting, you are going to have to rotoscope the fingers back over the mouth in the eyes too. So here's our mouth. Um, and I think I might just color correct this a little bit differently.

Joey Korenman (00:27:41): You see how bright the skin is around the mouth compared to the hands. And so I may have gone a little heavy with this, um, and it does look like, you know, like the skin of the hands is a little redder than this. So I may want to, I may want to go into the red channel on my levels and just push a little more red in there by adjusting this gamma arrow. Right. And you can see what that did that did help kind of blended in a little bit more. Um, and then I'm just going to scale this down a little bit horizontally so that we don't have the mouth layer go outside the boundaries of the hands and now it's better. Yeah. It matches a little bit better. All right. So now we've got them house in the middle and now let's do the eyes.

Joey Korenman (00:28:25): So the eyes exact same deal. Right. I I've already stabilized this. I grabbed this little freckle right here and I stabilized my footage and then pre-com this and say, I stable. She was talk about bad spelling. All right. And then, uh, and then we just go like this, just draw a mask on the eye. And the, the eye doesn't really move as much as the mouth. So you really only have to do that feather that maybe 30 pixels. And then we will grab our eye footage and drop it in here and scale that down. And we do want to color correct a little bit, you know, the, it is looking a little bit dark, so let's zoom in and just try to match that color. Correct. That to match the hands. There we go.

Joey Korenman (00:29:23): All right. And then I'm just going to let me call this left eye and duplicate it. We have our right. I will move this over here and for the right eye layer, I'm just going to slip this slip, this layer and time a little bit so that the eyes are not in sync to make it even creepier. And I need to do the same thing. Need to go, go forward. So this ride, I, you're not gonna see it until this frame. So option left bracket, and then on left eye, you're not going to see it until probably this frame. So option left bracket. All right. There you go.

Joey Korenman (00:30:03): Uh, as fantastic. Yeah. If any of you do this, try to do it with feet instead of hands. I think that would be even better. Um, all right. So here's basically how I built the monster. Um, now I'm going to show you a trick I did to deal with the rotoscoping. Cause there was a few times where, like, for example, here, where these fingers come back over the eyes and you need to, um, and you need to cover the eye with the finger. And while I'm looking at this, I'm going to color correct the, uh, collect Crick that layer down a little bit. So the skin matches, there we go. That's better. Um, and, and then especially at the beginning, you want, you want those fingers, you know, to be on top of the layers and sort of reveal them. So here's what I did.

Joey Korenman (00:30:52): Um, you know, you could, you could use masks to do it, but I knew that that would be a pain because especially on frames, you know, like, like this one where all I need is like, you know, 1, 2, 3, 3 frames, right. Of roto for that fingertip and doing that type of quick Rodo with masks is kind of a pain because you have to like draw a mask, but then scooted out of the way. Um, and so a lot of times it's easier to do this kind of stuff with paint. So I'm gonna show you how to do this with paint. It's actually kind of a neat little trick. So first thing I'm gonna do is pre composed my hands and we'll just call this hands. Um, and actually just to make this a little more flexible, I'm going to duplicate my hands and then comp the duplicates and just say hands, and I'm going to move this hands layer on top of everything.

Joey Korenman (00:31:43): So it's covering it up. All right. And so then I'm going to duplicate the hands layer and I'm going to call this one, Matt. All right. And so here's, what's going to happen. Um, I'm going to, I'm going to set my hands layer to use the map layer as it's alphabet. So keep my knees two layers hands, and Matt, they are the exact same thing right now. Um, and so really all I'm doing is I'm saying this layer use itself as it's mat. So you're seeing everything. And so now what I want to do is I want to right. Click Matt. And I want to say reveal, sorry. I want to say open layer, what that's going to do. It's going to open this pre-camp any layer viewer. Okay. If, if, if you double click this, it's going to actually open the pre comp and take you into that comp what I want is to open this as if it's just the layer.

Joey Korenman (00:32:34): So now I'm looking at it in a layer viewer, and what's cool is now, um, I can paint on it. I can use a paint brush on it. Okay. Um, and right now my paint brush settings are set, are set to, you know, to do exactly what I want. So let me kind of reset them so I can sort of talk you through it. So normally this is what paint lets you do, right? It lets you just paint onto a layer. And, um, what I want to do here, you can see I've gotten, get some issues with my key here. Maybe I'll go in and fix that. But, um, what I want to do is actually paint on the alpha channel of this. Um, you can paint on the RGBA if you want to. And actually maybe, maybe, maybe this is what I'll do for you guys.

Joey Korenman (00:33:21): When, when I made the demo, I painted directly on the alpha channel. You don't necessarily need to do that. Um, you can paint on the RGB eight channels, which paints on, you know, the visible RGB channels, but also the alpha channel, which is cool. So, um, so what you need to do is first turn on paint on transparent, and now you see your layer has gone away. You can't see it anymore. So in order to see it, you need to click, uh, click this little button in the middle toggle alpha boundary. It looks like a little pink man. And when you click it, it's going to show you your layer again. And so, so this is what it's doing. It's basically showing you your layer before you've painted it. And now as you paint on it, it's going to give you this pink boundary, which is going to sort of show you what the alpha channel looks like.

Joey Korenman (00:34:11): Overlaid on top of your image. Now, why is this useful? Well, this is how it's useful. What I want to do is drag this layer viewer, right? I'm going to grab these little notches up in the tab here. I'm going to grab this and I'm gonna move it down to this bottom little tab right here. And so now what I can do is I can actually see, let me rearrange screen a little bit. I can see what I'm painting on and I can see the result up here. Okay. Now, remember we have this set up so that this matte layer, which we are now able to paint on is being used as the alphabet for a copy of both hands. And so here's how this works now. Okay. If we go to like this frame, okay. I shouldn't see the mouth. I should see these fingers kind of over the mouth.

Joey Korenman (00:34:59): So what I can do zoom in here and I can just paint those fingers and then up here, you'll see the fingers reappear. Cool. Uh, let's go back a frame cause it'll be even more obvious here. And so you can just sort of quickly paint back in the pieces of the footage that you want to keep. And you can see how, when you're doing, um, when you have footage that moves really quickly, this can actually be a lot faster to just paint frame by frame like this than to actually do masking. You can see how quickly then on this frame, the mouth has gone. And so now the mouth gets revealed. So let's do the same thing with the eyeball, right? So now on this frame, there's no eyeball on this frame. These fingers should be covering up the eyeball. So I'm just going to paint and I'm using a Wacom stylist by the way, which makes this a lot easier because it's actually pressure sensitive.

Joey Korenman (00:35:56): And so you can see if I don't push very hard, I get these little fine brushes I can paint with. And if I need to, I can push really hard and get a fatter brush. And so this is the process is exactly what I did for the demo video that you guys saw at the beginning of this, I just went really quickly through every frame that needed it. And that's it. So that quickly, I've now rode the fingers back over the eye and you do the same thing for this eye. All right. So we'll do this really quickly. And um, this, this technique I got to tell you, this is one of the things that, um, it's kind of a pain to set up an after effects and you saw how kind of clunky it was to set it up. And um, if you guys ever get into nuke, nuke is incredible at this stuff.

Joey Korenman (00:36:42): And the paint system and nuke is a lot more powerful. Uh, the paint system and after effects, hasn't been updated in a very long time. There's a lot of features that I wish it had that it doesn't. So if anyone from, from Adobe is watching, um, got some thoughts for you on how to make this better. Um, but this does work pretty well. So it's so it's pretty cool. Anyway. So now if we just sort of play through this reveals these eyes and the mouse and what to do, there you go. All right. So now we've, uh, we've built out our monster and I'm not going to do all of the Rodo. Um, cause now you guys know how to do it, but there is our monster. So now let's go into our footage, okay. And let's figure out what we want to do. How are we going to make this work?

Joey Korenman (00:37:24): How are we going to actually get that monster to come out of my mouth? So, first thing I need to do is I need to get a good track. All right. And so I need to figure out where's the monster going to appear. It's not, it's going to appear on this frame. Cause that's the first frame where my mouth is open. Wow. That is a beautiful frame. And then it's going to, that monster is going to remain until my mouth is closed. So that frame, so I set my in and out points. I double-clicked the layer. Um, and by the way, I'm double clicking nothing's happening. That's cause I have my paint brush tool selected. So I need to go back to my selection tool and DoubleClick, and let's bring this up here and now I'm just going to track the motion of my face.

Joey Korenman (00:38:11): And so I just used my nose because now you see how it's getting a terrible track there, right? It didn't track very well. Well, the reason is look how far my nose moves from this frame to this frame, my nose moves up a whole bunch and this outer box, isn't big enough to find the nose. If I, if I make it bigger now finds the nose, but you can see how much slower it is. It tracking. It takes a lot longer, but it's actually doing a great job tracking. Let me pause this and zoom out for me so that you don't have to stare. You don't have to stare down my throat. Um, man, I, you know, I have a ring light. I don't know if you guys know what a ring light is, but I have a light basically right around the lens of the camera and it gives you these really nice reflections on your eyes.

Joey Korenman (00:39:03): Um, and it gives you pretty quick and dirty, easy lighting. But if your mouth is open, you get a lot of, um, sort of shiny specular on your throat and inside of your mouth. Um, which I don't know, it's kind of gross looking if you really just stare at it in slow motion. Um, so we're almost done tracking my nose and once we get a good track on that, we now have the motion of my head. And so what I want to do now is let's go back to, um, uh, we can stop right there. So I'm going to add a new null to the scene. And now I'm going to go down here to my tracking settings. I'm going to hit, edit, target, and make sure that my motion target is set to that new Knoll. I just added cause I want the motion to be applied to the no.

Joey Korenman (00:39:45): And so now I'll hit apply and it'll bring us back to our composition viewer. And if I hit you, you'll see that this Knoll now has a bunch of position, key frames on it and it tracks perfectly to my nose. So, you know, the, the basic thing we do is we now, you know, here's our, here's our monster we've created. Um, so what we can do is grab our, grab our monster comp, drag it in here. Oh, that's not it that's the wrong monster compliment. Make sure I figure out which one, this is, this is this monster comp, see, this is the importance of naming two comps named the same thing. So let's grab monster, drag it in there, put this at half Rez. And now I can just parent that to my novel. And now it's stuck to my face. And uh, you know, maybe I scale this up a little bit, move it down, position it where I want it. And I'll do a, I'll do a quick little, every other frame render here, by the way, if you guys don't know, uh, if you use the zero key on the number pad to do Ram previews, if you hold shift and do that, it previews every other frame, uh, and let's position this layer so that it doesn't start until the right frame. There we go.

Joey Korenman (00:41:06): There we go. Uh, so beautiful. So nice. Okay, cool. So now we've got the monster tracks to my face. Uh, this never gets old and um, and you can see that a lot of the issues we were having with the key, you don't really notice them when everything's going okay. And, uh, you know, there there's some color correction that, um, we still need to do because, um, I actually had to reshoot this shot of me with my mouth open wiggling, my head around, and it had gotten a lot darker. So I had to turn on a light and that light was orange. And so this might, the skin of the hand doesn't quite match the skin of my, of my head, my beautiful head. Let me show you how I dealt with this, by the way. Um, what I did was I put a, a hue and saturation effect on this and let's go to, um, the Red's control here and bring down the saturation in the reds.

Joey Korenman (00:42:07): Now you could see, it's also bringing down the saturation in my shirt and I want to try and keep my shirt as untouched as possible, um, color wise. And so if you look, um, the color of my head has a lot of red in it and not much blue, but the color of the shirt. Um, well, it's actually, it's actually pretty close. Um, but what you can do, this is a cool thing you can do with human saturations. You can try to limit the effect that this, that this has by using these controls here. So I only want it to affect certain reds and specifically reds that have a little bit more of an orange tint to them than my shirt does. So what I can do is I can pull these controls over, okay. And you can see that that did help if I pull this to the left.

Joey Korenman (00:42:54): And if you look at my shirt, as I pull this to the right, it's going to bring some of the color back to my shirt, but it's going to leave that adjustment on my head like that. And I do need to pull this up a little bit. And so now I, you know, it did hit my shirt a little bit, but it made the color of my skin match this much better. Um, and you can even push the heel a little bit if you want it to make it a little bluer or something like that. Um, and then I probably need to also put a levels effect on, but you can sort of see that that helped a lot already just by adjusting the human saturation. Okay. So let's talk about how we get this thing to actually come out of my mouth. The first thing we need to do is time it out properly.

Joey Korenman (00:43:36): Um, so let's turn this off for a minute. So when I, when this monster comes out of my mouth, I want the, uh, I want the fists to be closed and then open up pretty quickly. So by the time we get to here, I already want those hands opening up. So I need to return this. Um, and so that'll work pretty well. I also wanted this to feel a little bit creepier. If you guys have ever seen the movie Beetlejuice, there's this great shot where he sort of opens his mouth and all these spider legs come out, uh, and they, and they move really, really quickly. So, uh, I also time remapped this, um, and let's actually go into our, our monster pre-camp here. Here we go. Um, and you can see one problem we're having is that, uh, some of my layers are not long enough, um, like the right eye and the left, uh, the right eye. Doesn't go out far enough. So let, let me actually extend this out. So we actually get enough. There we go. Okay. So this is going to be our last frame and you can see, I haven't actually done all the roto work on this. Um, but we're, we're gonna just pretend they did for now. All right. So I'm going to trim this comp now, and then we'll go back into our footage and I'm going to time remap this so that it all just happens a lot faster.

Joey Korenman (00:45:02): All right. So that when this, when this, when these hands open and they start wiggling and let me just do a quick Ram preview, I want them to move a little bit faster than normal speed and just look really weird and freaky. Uh, and it also helped me because the hands will open faster. Yeah, there we go. That's the sound effect I'm going to make, but when this happens to me in real life, okay, so what I need to do is, uh, I need to split this layer because up until here, it's inside my mouth. And then from this point forward, it's outside of my mouth. So I'm going to go to this point in time, and I'm in hit shift command D that's the hockey, you can go up to edit and say split layer, right. And that just splits the layer right. Where your play head is.

Joey Korenman (00:45:50): And so then what I want to do is go to this, go to this layer here, let's turn this layer on and I'm gonna make a new solid, and I'm just going to call this hands, Matt, let's move it down here. And I'm just going to trim this layer up. So it lines up with that. And then I'm going to make it an adjustment layer so I can see through it. And I'm going to start, I'm going to go to this last frame here, and I'm going to put position and scale, key frame on my monster layer. Then I'm going to go to the first frame and I'm going to scale this thing down so that it could fit inside my mouth. Okay. So now it's going to come forward as my mouth opens, and then it's going to be outside of my mouth like that.

Joey Korenman (00:46:36): Okay. And if I, if I turn these off temporarily, you can see, I need to make sure there we go. So this, this, I actually kind of timed this out wrong. Um, so I'm gonna move these key frames to here, move these over a little bit, and then I'm going to move where that layer was split. So I'm just sort of adjusting the timing here. Okay. So let's see. So now I opened my mouth and it comes out. Yeah. All right. So I'm sort of roughing out the timing, blah op. Perfect. All right. And I'm going to put an ease on the end here so that they sort of ease into position. All right. So next thing I want to do is I wanted my mouth to sort of bulge a little bit as this thing popped out. So I'm going to turn off my monster layers for a second and go to my, go to the footage layer.

Joey Korenman (00:47:27): And I'm going to add a distort bulge effect. All right. And I'm just going to sort of roughly position that where my mouth is. And I did this very roughly, I mean, I, you know, you, you can track the bulge effect to the footage, but this happened so fast. I didn't really want to mess with it. And what's, you're animating is the bulge height. Okay. And I do want, I do want to taper this, so it sort of feathers nicely into the footage, but now I can, I can bulge my mouth like this. So let's start with zero on this frame at zero. And then we go forward maybe to this frame and open it up like this. All right. And I can adjust, adjust this here, here we go. So bra, so it really opens wide. And then I'll bring it back down to zero at the end.

Joey Korenman (00:48:24): And I just want, here we go, I bring it back down to zero, right. As this layer ends. So there you go. So this is just expanding my mouth and giving that fist a little more room to come out and it also looks awesome. All right. And so then what I want to do, uh, is let's turn on the hands and I'm going to set the transparency to 50% just for a minute, just so I can see through the actually I'm going to set a little bit lower. There we go. So I can see through them, um, actually, nevermind, I'm going to turn them off, but I'm going to turn my matte layer on and I'm going to go forward to this frame here.

Joey Korenman (00:49:04): And I'm going to wrote a scope, my enormous mouth. You guys are going to know my face and my mouth much better than I think I'm comfortable with after this. All right. So I'm going to put a mass key frame there, and then I'm going to just sort of go back and just kind of do some manual quick and dirty Rodo here. And so what I'm doing is I'm just making this matte layer into an alpha mat that I can then use on that first copy of my monster to get it to only be inside of my mouth at the beginning of this animation. All right. And I'll feather this mask, maybe five pixels. All right. And, uh, again, you know, Cyriak is just, he's just got a lot of patients, I assume, um, to be able to do this kind of thing, times a million, all right.

Joey Korenman (00:50:06): And then this is the first frame here. So there should just be like a tiny little, a tiny little hole where you can see that the fist starting to come through. There you go. And then we'll scoot that over. And by this point we should be starting to, we should probably start to see the fist come out of the mouth at this point. All right. So let's see what we got so far. So let's turn on our mat, our monster layer, and let's set that layer to use the mat as it's out from that. All right. So [inaudible], and so let's say right about there.

Joey Korenman (00:50:49): Let's see pops out. So the timing of this needs to shift a little bit what I want and let me look at the time we met key frames of both of these layers. Um, you can see that the fist is, the fists are starting to open a little too soon. I don't want them to open until maybe here. So I'm going to take those time, remap key frames and push them forward a little bit. There we go. And there we go. And now I'm actually gonna, I'm gonna move, I'm gonna move the outpoint of this layer back to here and have that layer start here. So I'm just playing with the timing of when these things pop out. There we go.

Joey Korenman (00:51:31): Okay. Um, and I think let's take a look. I have a feeling this is going to be too abrupt. Yeah. Yeah. They pop out too abruptly. It is pretty funny though. Um, so I think what I may want to do is let's see here. Oh, there's another problem. There's another problem. People. I keep finding problems. So, so here's one of the reasons this is happening. Um, these hands here, uh, have scale and position, key frames on them. This layer does not. Uh, so what I need to do is actually go here. I need to parent this monster layer to this monster layer. So now as it pops out, those will move to, and that's gonna really help. There we go. And then the other thing I need to do is probably have those hands start even smaller than they do so that they can really feel like they're coming out of. Let's see.

Joey Korenman (00:52:39): That's better. Okay. All right. And then what I might do is just sort of on this, on this frame here. Let me open up my little bulge effect here. Um, on this frame here, I may actually really bulge the mouth and maybe even bulge it a little more here and then have it go back down to zero, just so that as the hands pop through, there's a little bit of a sort of ball on my lips, you know, like that things pushing through the threshold. All right. And let me, let me make this whole area bigger so that it actually affects, there we go. All right. And, uh, you know, I honestly like it took me probably half hour. I'm just tweaking this transition to really make it feel okay, this isn't bad, but there's still a little bit of a jump right there. Um, and so some of the things I would do is just, you know, I might even try to animate the mask so that maybe like the top knuckles start to pop through first.

Joey Korenman (00:53:42): So maybe, you know, if I go, if I, if I made this take one frame longer, before sorry, before, um, before the hands pop out, what I could do is I could adjust this mask like this so that the top of the fists have started to come out, but the bottom is still stuck in there. And even just having that happen for one frame, maybe can help, can help this feel like that. Right. It just helps that transition. And the more that you can do the better, there we go. All right. So then there's a couple more things I did to really like help sell this. So one thing is I animated some color correction, so I put a level's effect on the monster that's inside the mouth. All right. And as it comes forward, it's going to get brighter. So what I did is on the last frame, right before it's like fully out of the mouth, put a key frame on the histogram for the levels of fact, you could use a different effect.

Joey Korenman (00:54:45): I just really like to use levels for doing basic brightness color correction, but you could also use brightness contrast. Um, but I put a pricky frame here, go to the first frame where it's really inside my mouth and dark in it. Okay. So I'm going to push the white output down. I'm going to push the gamma down. Um, and I want it to just look like it's like inside my mouth. So I'm just sort of, you know, looking at the inside of my mouth, looking at the hands and trying to match the colors right. As best I can. And this happens really quickly. So something like that. Right? And so you can see before and after. And so now it's going to get brighter as it comes out of my mouth. There we go. And now once it's out of my mouth, it should cast a shadow on my face and on the wall.

Joey Korenman (00:55:37): If you look, there's kind of this radial shadow on me because I'm using a ring light on my camera. Um, and so this is, this is really easy to do. All you need to do is go to the monster layer, the main one that's that's on the outside of my face and go to perspective and add a radial shadow. And then you can move the light source around, which is right here. You can move it. Now, the light source. I know when I shot it was right in the middle of the lens. So it's right in the middle of the camera. And then you just soften it to match the existing shadows and adjust the opacity to match the existing shadows, something like that. And now that shadow sort of matches the real shadow helps a little bit. And then the last thing I did was, um, right underneath this layer, once this thing is outside of my mouth, it's also supposed to cast a shadow on my face and sort of darkened my face because it's, you know, it's coming out of my mouth.

Joey Korenman (00:56:34): So like there should be a little shadow here, a little shadow here. So I just made a new solid that was black, stuck it under here. And, uh, let's just trim it. So it's the same length. Let's just trim it to here. And, um, and just temporarily make an adjustment layer. And then I'm gonna use my mask. I'm just going to sort of draw like where this shadow should sort of fall like that let's make this a normal layer now. And then just feather that like this and turn the opacity down. Doesn't need to be that dark. But something like that, I mean, it might actually look like that. And so then what I want to do is parent this solid to the monster and it's moved, so I need to, oh boy, it's moved. So I need to, I need to now move this back to where it was.

Joey Korenman (00:57:27): It was somewhere like that. There we go. And so now it will, because I parented it to that monster layer. It will move with it. And it's like a shadow on my face. There you go. So for the example, the only other things that, uh, we haven't gone over is, you know, I just, I finished the rodeo for the fingers. Um, I had the hand go back inside my mouth, which using the exact same techniques. Um, and, and really that's it. So, uh, you guys should now have all the tools. You need to make a handcraft monster, come out of your mouth and go back inside if you, if you'd like it to. Um, and so we covered a lot in this video. There's stabilizing, there's tracking, um, a little bit of color correction and really, you know, one of the things I just sort of hope you take away from this.

Joey Korenman (00:58:21): I always try to give you a takeaway. Um, one of the takeaways is sometimes there is no easy way if you're going to do something like this or anything that looks like Siri X work, or has that same style, you're going to have to do a ton of manual labor. And there's no getting around it. There's gonna be a lot of key frames. A lot of roto, there might be some paint there's going to be tracking and stabilizing and adjusting and, and, and just trying to figure out what are those little details, those little visual details. Like it's really bothering me this pop that happens right there. You know? And so I might even go in and manually meshwork my mouth just to make it really feel good when that, when that hand pops out. So there's a lot of manual labor involved. Um, and you shouldn't be afraid of that. And sometimes there's no magic bullet to just make it easy on yourself. So I hope you guys learned a lot. I hope this was fun. I hope it gives you a little bit of insight into how Cyriak I'm assuming does, uh, some of his stuff. And hopefully you can, you can freak out your friends and do some weird stuff, uh, with your body. Um, so thank you guys as always, this was fun. I hope you got a lot out of it and I'll see you next time.

Joey Korenman (00:59:31): Thank you so much for watching. I hope he thought it was interesting. And I apologize for making you stare at the inside of my mouth and my pores and different parts of me for long periods of time. I hope you learned some cool tricks about stabilizing, tracking, color, correcting, and just strategies for doing this weird kind of stuff. If you have any questions or thoughts about this lesson, let us know now, go follow Cyriak and check out all of his amazing bizarre work. Thank you again. And I'll see you next time.

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Cinema 4D Basecamp

Learn Cinema 4D from the ground up in this exciting introductory C4D course.


Now is the time to learn the skills you need to advance in your motion design career: