Simple Character Animation in After Effects (for Beginners)
In this guide, we’ll look at how to create a simple character animation in After Effects. This is suitable for beginners and is described in detail in the video. Here is a quick overview of the steps I took to create it:
Organize your layers as always. Make sure to precompose the nose and the two eyes in separate compositions.
Convert the head and ears into shape objects so that you can modify them later on.
The head will be the base of your animation – all other parts of the character will be animated in reference to it. To animate the head, add keyframes for position, scale, and path.
Use the keyframes of the head as a starting point. Animate path, position, and rotation.
Animate the path, position, and rotation. Offset the keyframes to create a cartoon bouncing effect.
Mask the pupil inside the eye and create a composition for the blink. Watch the video for a detailed description.
Create an ellipse shape, changed the color, and lower the opacity. Mask and alpha-invert the character so it looks like it’s jumping out from the shadow.
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