Ae-Splitting Cells

Today I got bored at home, so I decided to look on YouTube for a good tutorial to try and get better at after effects, the one I found was a effect that simulates cell division but could also be used as water droplets and such. For this look we needed to use a lot of different effects including, tint, curves, glow, turbulent noise, cc glass, simple choker, levels, cc vector blur, Gaussian blur and a turbulent displacement.

These effects all do different things, the Tint effect just adds a small tint of the color wanted to the layer its added too, curves is just a color correction that we have used numerous times. Glow is also just as it sounds adding a glow which can be changed by radius intensity and more, turbulent noise is basically like fractal noise but is easier on the computer to render but can be changed in the exact same way, below is a comparison of the two and as you can see the two effects generate seeds very almost the same way but gives a very different outcome allowing the two to have very different used.

Left=Fractal Noise. Right= Turbulent Noise

CC glass is a weird one in my opinion as when i was trying to use it most of the time it wouldn’t do too much but once I used it on something that had a glow or something i wanted to look see through it worked fine as the effect adds a glass looking transparent effect while also smoothing out any edges and basically made everything look more clean I have also found out that adding this effect to a adjustment layer gives a water ripple effect depending on the circumstances. Below is a comparison with and without the effect.

Left=With CC Glass. Right = Without CC Glass.

A Simple Choker just shrinks or expands the edges of a matte in small increments which gives a overall cleaner matte, for my project I put three simple chokers on the outside of the cell membrane.

Levels is just a different type of color correction that i used, the reason I used this type of color correction was because I could use the sliders to change the gradient of the colors that I wanted instead of using the graph. Although the two do similar things each are used for different things, for example I would personally use curves for more of a quicker outcome like i did on the “Face Vein” blog post, where I would use levels if I had more time to adjust it to and exact point, or in situations like this both could be used for a nice outcome as i used levels for the membrane and curves on the end adjustment layer to give it a quick polished look.

CC vector blur and Gaussian blur are just two different types of blurs, I used one of the blurs on the edging of my masks and one going on while the two cells are animating to make it look a little bit better.

Turbulent Displacement is one the newest effects that I have learnt, and what it basically does it gives a wiggly line effect I used this on the very first pre-composite where I had the shape of the whole cell including the membrane. I used this to give the cells a nice look as real cells don’t look like perfect circles they look more wiggly and displaced. The best video I could find on how it looks would be the following, although this maybe hard to see it can be done on a much higher scale and could be used well on an adjustment layer if you want to make a video distort and wiggle.


This is the end result of the whole process, I personally think that this came out quite nice for a first attempt even though i did mostly follow a tutorial but added my own preference on how i want it to look being in the cells.


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