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After Effects Apprentice [Paperback]

Chris and Trish Meyer
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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After Effects Apprentice: Real World Skills for the Aspiring Motion Graphics Artist After Effects Apprentice: Real World Skills for the Aspiring Motion Graphics Artist
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Book Description

Jan. 6 2009 0240811364 978-0240811369 2

New to the 2nd edition: * All instructions, screen shots, Guided Tour video training movies, and project files updated for After Effects CS4. CS3 and CS4 features have been integrated throughout, including the pervasive use of Shape layers, Layer Styles, and Brainstorm * More integration with other Adobe applications, including using After Effects with Illustrator, Photoshop (including new Vanishing Point and 3d Layer exercises) and Flash CS4 * Redesigned first and last lessons, including an all-new final project that walks through the creation of a widescreen broadcast TV promo * Free bonus chapters on the DVD from other books on Photoshop, Cinema 4D, Flash, and broadcast design * Coupon for 15% off stock footage from Artbeats on DVD

New CS5 Tip Sheet: Chris and Trish Meyer have authored a PDF that covers all changes a reader (including professors) might experience when using this book (authored for CS4) with After Effects CS5. The PDF is available here: http://www.crishdesign.com/books/After-Effects-Apprentice/index.html

If you're new to After Effects and want to get up to speed quickly, After Effects Apprentice was created just for you. With 11 core lessons plus a hip final project that pulls it all together, you'll learn how to tap this program's vast potential -whether you want to create motion graphics for network television, corporate communications, or your own work. Fully updated to cover After Effects CS4, this book presents a professional perspective on the most important features a motion graphics artist needs to learn in order to use this program effectively. You'll learn to creatively combine layers, animate eye-catching titles, manipulate 3D space, key and stabilize a shot to place it in a new environment, and use effects to generate excitement or enhance the realism of a scene. DVD contains: All exercise source material and projects, guided video tours, and movies of the finished projects.



Topics include how to:
. Animate, edit, layer, and composite video and still images.
. Manipulate keyframes and the way they interpolate to create more refined animations.
. Use masks, mattes, stencils and blending modes to add sophistication to your imagery.
. Create and animate shape layers and text.
. Place your layers in 3D space.
. Use tracking and keying to create special effects, such as replacing screen displays.

DVD contains: All exercise source material and projects, an hour and a
half of video guided tours, plus bonus chapters from other books.

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Review

'After Effects Apprentice' provides a strong foundation for the aspiring motion graphics designer or visual effects artist. It is an excellent resource to help users get up to speed in After Effects quickly and to maximize their creative expression.
Steve Kilisky, senior product manager, Adobe After Effects.

The Meyers have once again shown their eloquence and expert knowledge of After Effects. It is my opinion that After Effects Apprentice will be the primer for all those who are learning After Effects in production work.
R.Christopher Biggs, special digital effects animator, Walt Disney Imagineering

I literally learned After Effects from Trish Meyer two weeks before starting work on "Star Wars: Episode 1". I wouldn't have survived without her training. I consider Trish and Chris Meyer my source for After Effects insights. Beyond their knowledge of the application... their commitment to quality, and more importantly clarity, makes all of their books a "Must-have." "After Effects Apprentice" is a great way to get started in After Effects...possibly the best way.
Alex Lindsay, chief architect Pixel Corp

Chris and Trish Meyer's clear and concise instructions make motion graphics accessible to everyone.
Louise Ping, senior product marketing manager, Adobe After Effects

This book provides a "missing link" for those who need to master essential After Effects techniques but also want to improve their overall grasp of broad motion graphics and VFX principles and methods.
Dave Hurley, Instructor, San Francisco State University MSP

The lessons are structured very well, the writing is easy to understand, and each step builds on the previous one. I will defiantly use this book in my Motion Graphics class at MiraCosta College. Thanks for making my job much easier!!
Dan Wagner, Instructor - Motion Graphics, MiraCosta College

From the Back Cover

If you're new to After Effects and want to get up to speed quickly, After Effects Apprentice was created just for you. With 11 core lessons plus a hip final project that pulls it all together, you'll learn how to tap this program's vast potential -whether you want to create motion graphics for network television, corporate communications, or your own work.

Fully updated to cover After Effects CS4, this book presents a professional perspective on the most important features a motion graphics artist needs to learn in order to use this program effectively. You'll learn to creatively combine layers, animate eye-catching titles, manipulate 3D space, key and stabilize a shot to place it in a new environment, and use effects to generate excitement or enhance the realism of a scene.

Easy to follow step-by-step instructions take you through each technique, including projects that encourage you to express your own creativity. You'll learn more than just the tools; you'll learn skills that you can immediately put to work in your own productions.

New to the 2nd edition: * All instructions, screen shots, Guided Tour video training movies, and project files updated for After Effects CS4. CS3 and CS4 features have been integrated throughout, including the pervasive use of Shape layers, Layer Styles, and Brainstorm * More integration with other Adobe applications, including using After Effects with Illustrator, Photoshop (including new Vanishing Point and 3d Layer exercises) and Flash CS4 * Redesigned first and last lessons, including an all-new final project that walks through the creation of a widescreen broadcast TV promo * Free bonus chapters on the DVD from other books on Photoshop, Cinema 4D, Flash, and broadcast design * Coupon for 15% off stock footage from Artbeats on DVD


Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Building your first animation while you learn a typical After Effects workflow. Read the first page
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars After Effects Apprentice (Purchased Aug. 5 2009
By Jules
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
- Mostly simple to read, I wished they recommended a sequel. I will purchase another book in the series.
- Some of the things I learned I will apply to the other Adobe Creative Suite Products, which I use regularly.
- As an advanced print graphic designer, I found the content intuitive however those new to the Adobe CS world may find some of the content confusing.

If this book is tailored to Newbies, some questions need to be answered in greater detail such as:
o What is the best recommended for After Effects, 32 vs 64 bit, how much Ram to use, the benefits of Accelerator Cards, Graphics Cards etc.
o More on the various pixel formats and broadcast standards and
o How After Effects uses memory.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  43 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for getting up to speed on After Effects Feb. 18 2009
By Elaine Montoya - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Chris and Trish Meyer have done it again!

Hot off the press, I just read the new release {second edition} of After Effects Apprentice.

First of all, if you have never heard of Trish and Chris Meyer before - I can only assume you are new to After Effects. ;) And, in that case - After Effects Apprentice is the perfect book for you.

Chris and Trish publish two different books:

Creating Motion Graphics with After Effects: Essential and Advanced Techniques, 4th Edition

and

After Effects Apprentice, Second Edition

The first book, is often referred to as the After Effects 'bible' in the industry. It is in-depth, and detailed - and serves as a valuable resource for just about anything After Effects.

The second book, After Effects Apprentice, provides a strong foundation for motion graphic artists wanting to learn After Effects. It's also great for other 'new media' artists or web-developers who want to incorporate After Effects in their work - but don't see themselves as full-time motion graphic artists.

The book is concise, easy to read - and importantly - has great visuals to walk you through the process. The new release is also a great way to get up-to-speed on the new features of After Effects CS4.

This is a 'must have' book for any After Effects users bookshelf.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Illuminating tutorials July 18 2009
By Lyle Kopnicky - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The authors clearly spent a lot of time carefully constructing the tutorials. Every feature has a clear, motivating example. Each page teaches several new fascinating and useful techniques. It's unbelievable how dense this material really is. What would take another author 1,000 pages to teach, Meyer & Meyer do in 300. Along the main text, the side photos illustrate the detailed steps. No step is left out. Starting with the preconfigured tutorial files lets you focus on learning each features without tedium.

I can't figure out which is more fun: reading this book, or playing with After Effects. This book is a joy to read!
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent introduction to After Effects - a thorough and readable hands-on guide to getting down the basics July 5 2010
By Nathan Andersen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
When I first started out with After Effects, I tried following several online tutorials and referring to Adobe's online help and guides. I was able to create some impressive effects, but only by basically copying the tutorials, step by step. When I tried to go back and duplicate or modify those effects, it was quickly apparent I was in over my head. I could follow a precise recipe, but had no ability to improvise in the kitchen. What I really needed was a guide that could help me understand the tools in a step-by-step fashion. After Effects Apprentice is exactly what I was looking for.

Lots of software guides are dry and technical. This one isn't. Trish and Chris Meyer write clearly, and the tone of the guide is encouraging and warm, and sometimes quite funny. What I really like is that they have you do things in different ways each time, so that by the end of each lesson you've learned a number of keyboard shortcuts and different ways to accomplish each objective. More importantly you've learned what difference it makes how you do it and why you'd want to do it various ways. The authors' commitment to the idea that you learn best when things are repeated, in various different ways and in different contexts (so it doesn't ever just feel like more of the same) also means that you can work on the chapters out of order if you really want to - while some of the skills build upon what is learned in previous chapters, there's usually enough review to let you get at least what you need to have known in order to focus on the new topic. The authors have clearly worked closely with students, seen what works and what doesn't and really have thought carefully about how to help their readers become independent learners of After Effects.

Each lesson has accompanying project files on the attached CD (I found it to be useful just to copy everything on the CD to my desktop; for convenience all the files for each lesson are captured in clearly labelled folders so that they are easy to find). For everything they ask you to try, there are files to get you started, and a finished project to show you what it should end up looking like. In many cases they also have exercises they encourage you to try ("quizzlers") to go beyond and build creatively on the skills you have just learned. Overall, this is much more than a book -- it is a comprehensive, hands-on, learning system.

Minor omission: After Effects really isn't designed for doing much with music or sound, but it can do some things with them and the treatment of the topic in the book is pretty spare (it's almost an afterthought in a chapter that's focused on working with text, and there are a couple of other mentions of how to apply other topics to working with sound in a few other places). I would have liked a bit more coverage of what you can do with music and or sound in After Effects, even if it just amounted to explaining how to coordinate the use of After Effects with other Adobe Creative Suite programs that do better with Sound such as Soundbooth and Premiere.

Note that even though I'm learning After Effects on CS5 and the current edition of Apprentice is focused on CS3 and CS4, it's all still relevant, and everything covered here works perfectly. Most of what is new in CS5, in fact, has to do with rotoscoping and tracking, topics that are best dealt with when you have the basics down. This is a book dealing with the basics, and there's a lot to learn there before you can take full advantage of this sophisticated software package. After Effects Apprentice is a great place to start. Highly recommended for those who are coming to After Effects for the first time, and for those who never really sat down to learn the nuts and bolts of the program before trying out the more advanced features in a piecemeal fashion. I can't wait now to go on and work through Creating Motion Graphics with After Effects, by the same authors.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No longer a beginner Nov. 27 2010
By Khanline - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the first book i ever bought. I went through it cover to cover. AWESEOME!! I have bought a few books since and many of them rehash things I've learned in this book. So far my most recommended book to learn after effects as a whole. To make it work for you and be able to create your OWN work and not rehash web site stuff. I am now able to reverse engineer many things i see on TV or Movies mostly due to this book.

If you are looking to have a resource book for many techniques or to learn from a well worded and solid teaching style, this book is for you!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great After Effects Manual. All you need Sept. 9 2009
By Scott Kapfhamer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If your just starting out and need a good reference this book nails it. Buy it.
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