Ever wanted to turn your villain's eyes into lasers or create an evil clone of your hero? If your answer is, "Yes, I think of this daily, but the VFX process is entirely too complicated for a noob like me," then I've got good news for you: it's not. In fact, there are many stylishly epic effects you can create without ever having opened a single After Effects project.

In this video, Film Riot's Ryan Connolly runs through 5 different VFX for those who don't have a whole lot of experience working in effects, from split screens to screen swaps. And all you'll need is Adobe After Effects. Take a look below:

As a general rule, I usually don't advise aspiring VFX artists to cherry-pick techniques to create specific visual effects—a broader, more in-depth and well-rounded learning experience is typically a better way to go.

However, if you're a filmmaker who just needs to add a certain effect to your film and doesn't have the budget to hire someone to do it, then, by all means, pick those plump ass cherries.

In this video, Connolly goes over a handful of some of the more popular visual effects—ones that, if a no-budget filmmaker is going to use VFX, they'll use these.

  • Removing stuff using masks and clean plates
  • Screen replacement using masks and Power Pin effect
  • Crazy eye effects using tracking and solids
  • 3D titles that track through your shot
  • Creating a split-screen effect using masks and clean plates

You don't need a ton of expertise, plug-ins, or even time to pull off these effects. A little knowledge of how to navigate After Effects would help, but even if you've never even opened the software before, these effects are a great way to get your feet wet in VFX.

Source: Film Riot