Our most popular video on YouTube is called “Animating still images to look like video.” Yes, yes – I know it’s a long name for a video but it gets a lot of views, which tells us two things:

         1. People enjoy watching our content.

         2. Our viewers have a desire or need to learn how to animate still images for personal projects, school assignments, or business purposes.

In the spirit of the new season here are 4 video tutorials on how to animate still frames in After Effects. All these videos are made possible by our own Mikey Borup. Visit his YouTube channel After Effects w/ Mikey to find more killer After Effect tutorials. Just click on the images to view the tutorials.

1. Animated Still Photos: 4 ways to do it in After Effects

In this After Effects tutorial you will be creating a series of animated still image projects using the Puppet Tool, creating a Displacement Map, separating graphic layers, and using Vanishing Point in Photoshop in a combine effort to make stunning photo realistic animations.

2. Quick & Dirty Image Parallax

The parallax effect is a super popular visual effect you can create in After Effects. Make beautiful slideshows with images moving in slow motion kens burns style where the background and the  foreground appear to be in motion. This will definitely spring some life into your photos.

In this tutorial you will need to use the Displacement Map and CC Slant effect to distort the image.

3. Quick Tip: CC Slant Breezy Grass

So yea I know this is sort of a random animation but trust me it’s a quick tutorial to get through. It’s really easy to make, especially if you have some free time and you want to make pictures of grass move. In this After Effects tutorial you will use the CC Slant effect and the Wiggle Expression. I would definitely check this one out because you will need it in the following lesson.

4. Animating still images to look like video

This is probably the most complicated After Effects tutorial you will see on this page. It consists of creating multiple layers, masking, using filters, and feathering those layers. You will be using CC SlantWiggle Expression, Ripple, Lens Flare, and Fast Blur effects.

Well there you have it! 4 awesome After Effects tutorials for you guys to practice with. Send us the links to your own projects so we can showcase them on our website and Facebook page. If you have any requests for future tutorials please share your ideas with us in the comment section below. You guys have a great fall season, and look forward to more updates and blog posts from us at Cinema Spice.

Man, all this breezy grass animations make me think of an epic science fiction drama for some reason.

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About the author

Tony is a Brigham Young University-Idaho graduate with a Bachelors Degree in Communication. He has experience in journalism and video production. One of his favorite movies is Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. His favorite superhero is Spider-Man. He lives in Rexburg, Idaho with his lovely wife.

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