For this experiment I used one of Jason Chan’s amazing artwork. I wanted to try and experiment with 2.5D animating since I want to use it for my FMP. I felt that the best way to do that, was to actually try and animate a still image in After Effects. I felt a little more confident this time, since I already tried animating an image in the past and managed to do it after some research and self-motivation and self teaching myself some of the skills and techniques.
Firstly, you have to break the image into layers. Since I wanted to animate the hooded character, I started by selecting him the best I could and cutting and pasting him out and onto a new layer.
When I was satisfied with my selection I did the same to the other parts of the background that I wanted to animate, which in that case, was the foreground.
Because for the animation that I want to do I need a clear background of both those elements (character and foreground) I had to delete them both from the original background by selecting the character and foreground selection and pressing shift>backspace and filling in both those selections with the fill tool.
Once I did that, I was left with a clear background that needed to be tidied up manually (I selected some elements that were still visible after the character and went through the same process (shift>backspace and then ok).
I did the same with the foreground until I was satisfied.
I then went into After Effects and opened a new project and opened the PSD file that I saved it as.
I dragged the image into the composition and started doing more research on how to make the background zoom in, since that was the final product I wanted to end up with.
I then added the layers that I edited out earlier in Photoshop (foreground as the first layer, then the character and then the background.)
This is when my friend Linus came and helped and showed me how the timeline works and how to use the scale and position effect to zoom in or twist/ turn the desired layer. You have to work backwards in it, so basically if you want to create a zoom, you have to click on the time in the timeline where you want your layer to stop zooming in at, zoom in at that time, click on the little clock in your layer to set it, go back to the beginning of your timeline and then resize the image to the starting position.
You do that to any effect you wish to achieve, except the actual animating part (puppet pin tool) where you have to pin the object you wish to animate and then in the timeline, you record the process.
Basically if you want to animate a pin, you move it in the direction you want to move it and then move the timeline line slightly and then keep repeating the pattern. The timeline should add a little dot to show that the movement has been recorded.