If you are lucky enough to be in the path of today's rare solar eclipse, we've put together a guide for how to shoot it. But if you're far away, worry not: You can create your own stunning timelapse eclipse in After Effects with native plugins and effects, thanks to this new tutorial from Caleb Ward.

In the below step-by-step breakdown, Ward walks you through his process starting from the very beginning, which makes this exercise appropriate for even a novice After Effects user. The tutorial uses the most basic tools of the software, like masking and keyframes, but the end result is a sophisticated-looking eclipse. The best part is that you can create the entire effect without any third-party plugins.

Ward has also shared his project file for free, so you can try it yourself even more easily.

Have you tried creating an eclipse on your own? Or given Ward's tutorial a whirl? Show us the results in the comments!

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