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Motion Trail Text Animation in After Effects

Learn to make a cool motion trail text animation in After Effects with this easy tutorial! In just a few simple steps, you’ll create a visually appealing motion trail effect without the need for any plugins. It’s a straightforward process, making it perfect for beginners. By the end of the tutorial, you’ll be able to add a stylish motion trail to your text, giving it a dynamic and eye-catching look. Enjoy the tutorial and have fun experimenting with your own motion trail text animations in After Effects!

Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Motion Trail Text Animation:

Step 1: Create a Composition

  1. Open Adobe After Effects.
  2. Create a new composition named “Motion Trail Effect.”
  3. Set the resolution to 1920×1080 pixels, frame rate to 30 frames per second, and duration to 10 seconds.

Step 2: Add and Pre-compose Text

  1. Select the Type Tool from the toolbar and click anywhere on the screen to create a text layer.
  2. Type your desired text and align it to the center.
  3. Right-click on the text layer and choose “Pre-compose.”

Step 3: Apply Rotation Animation

  1. Select the pre-composed text layer and press the R key to open rotation properties.
  2. Go to about 10 frames forward and add a keyframe.
  3. Go to 1.5 seconds forward and change the rotation to 360 degrees.
  4. Go a few frames forward and add another keyframe with the same value.
  5. Go to 1.5 seconds forward and set rotation back to 0.
  6. Repeat this process until the end of the timeline.
  7. Select all keyframes, right-click, go to Keyframe Assistant, and choose “Easy Ease.”
  8. While holding the Alt key, drag the last keyframe to the end of the timeline.

Step 4: Refine Animation Curves

  1. Go to the Graph Editor and adjust the curves to create a smooth animation.

Step 5: Apply Fill Effect for Motion Trail

  1. In the Projects panel, drag and drop the pre-composed text layer to the composition.
  2. Go to Effects & Presets and search for the “Fill” effect. Apply it to the bottom text layer.
  3. Select the bottom text layer and drag the pick whip to the top text layer.

Step 6: Create Echo Effect for Motion Trail

  1. In Effects & Presets, search for the “Echo” effect. Apply it to the bottom text layer.
  2. Set Echo Time to -0.020.
  3. Change the number of echoes to 40.
  4. Adjust the Decay to 0.85.
  5. Turn on the “Continuously Rasterize” option.

Step 7: Control Text Color

  1. Go to the Layer Menu > New > Null Object. Rename it to “Color Control.”
  2. Right-click on the Color Control layer, go to Effects > Expression Controls, and choose “Color Control.”
  3. Change the color if desired and lock the Control options.
  4. Select the bottom text layer and press the E key to open Effects. Under the Fill Effect, hold the Alt key and click the stopwatch icon to add an expression. Drag the Pick Whip to the Color Control.

Step 8: Add Gaussian Blur Effect

  1. Duplicate the bottom text layer and change the Decay value to 0.91.
  2. Select the middle text layer, go to Effects & Presets, and search for the “Gaussian Blur” effect. Apply it to the text layer and set the blurriness to 20.
  3. Apply the same Gaussian Blur effect to the bottom text layer.

Your Motion Trail Text Animation is now complete! This tutorial guides you through creating a dynamic animation with rotating text, motion trails, and color control. By using effects like Echo and Gaussian Blur, you achieve the motion trail effect. Feel free to explore variations and further enhancements to customize your animation.

Project File Details:

UpdatedMarch 25, 2024
CompatibilityAfter Effects CC
Required PluginNo
Size40 KB
CategoryText Animation Tutorials