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Create a 3D Laptop in After Effects

after effects

Creating a 3D object in after effects is not an easy task, but it gives you the freedom to create beautiful animations and work with only one software.

After Effects is a good alternative to complex 3D softwares like Maya and Blender. Especially if you are already using it to create your animated explainer videos or if you’re not a pro in 3D.

Today, we’re going to talk about how to create a 3D laptop in After Effects in just a few easy to follow steps. We won’t be using any third-party plugins or even vector files. Everything will be designed and animated in after effects, so we can easily animate it later. 

Here are the steps that we’re going to follow:

1. Design ( in After Effects)
2. Create 3D shapes
3. Animating the shapes

Let’s get started.


Design in After Effects.

First, let’s create the shape of the monitor using the After Effects shape tool.

After effects process

Change the roundness of the shape from the settings.

After effects roundness

Then, let’s add the screen. Draw another shape on the same layer.

After effects shape

You can also draw a camera if you want (again on the same layer). We want all the elements to be on the same layer, so it is easier for After Effects to associate them with the same shape. That way, when we move the shapes and make them 3D later on, they’ll all move together.

After effects shapes

Turn the shapes into 3D shapes in After Effects

Next, click the cube icon next to the layer to make it 3D. And change the Renderer to Cinema 4D.

After effects 3d

Go to Geometry Options and change the Extrusion Depth (play with this option until you are happy with the result)

After effects depth

Now our monitor is ready.

After effects process

Next, let’s create the bottom part of the laptop ( again in After Effects). Create your shapes using the shape tool.
Next, make the layers 3D and change the renderer again.
Then, change the extrusion depth again. (same as in the previous step).
Copy and paste the button part layers in the same composition as the monitor.
Click on views> 2 views:

after effects

Drag the bottom part of the laptop behind the monitor. 

After effects

Animate the shapes

Finally, adjust the Y Position keyframes and make this laptop come to life.

You can download our project files below, but we strongly recommend you try it yourself first. You’ll learn so much about after effects if you do and it would be easier to create your own 3d shapes in the future.

Drop us an email if you have any questions.

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    Author avatar
    Kashu Team
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