This is the ninth part of a series of reviews that will cover what is contained in the Adobe Creative Suite 3 (CS3) Master Collection. When Adobe released CS3 in 2007, they not only released single version products, but also six separate suites of products. They are Design Premium, Design Standard, Web Premium, Standard, Production Premium, and Master Collection. You can go online to compare what is contained in each version. The goal of this series it to define what each product does and provide information of what the new version brings to the table.
Adobe After Effects is a digital motion graphics and compositing software that is published by Adobe Systems. It can be used for both film and video post-production. It uses a system of layers organized on a timeline to create composites from still images and motion footage such as from video files.
What do you need to run Adobe After Effects CS3? On Windows you need an Intel® Pentium® 4 1.4 GHz of DV, 3.8GHz for HDV, Intel Centrino®, Intel Xeon® dual 2.6GHz for HD, or Intel Core™ Duo (or compatible) processor, Windows XP SP2 or Vista, on Mac, PowerPC® G4 or G5 or multicore Intel processor, Mac OS X v10.4.8 – 10.5 (Leopard), 1GB RAM for DV, 2GB for HDV or HD, 1,024x768 monitor resolution with 16-bit video card, 500 MB hard drive space plus 2GB for extra optional content and DVD-ROM Drive.
• Shape Layers – bring to Adobe After Effects, a vector based drawing tool that allows you to create vectors from within After Effects itself. Prior to CS3, if you needed vector graphics, you would have to own and use a product like Illustrator to create the shapes and then import them in. Now, with Shape Layers, you can do this from within After Effects.
• Puppet Tool – allows you to add life to any shape or layer. Virtually any layer is a candidate for Puppet tool animation. This gives new possibilities to text animation as individual letters and words can take on the life of an animated character. Shape Layers can be manipulated to create organic motions with just a few drags of the mouse. In the image below, the one on the left is the original image and the one on the right is after using some of the puppet pins to change the guy in the image.