Using Expressions for Cartoon Lip Sync


Adobe® After Effects®


Lesson Info

Using Expressions for Cartoon Lip Sync

Let me back up a little bit here with um another project that we had done we had a script and voiceover and characters to animate and they wanted a kind of a robot they did like a little game show thing and they had a robot that was kind of the announcer on dh introduce things so they had a little robot and they wanted the mouth to kind of do something and I thought instead of mechanically making the mouth try to open and close let's make it look a little digital so I did a couple things here the first thing I've got I've got my vo layer which is the audio layer here and then I've got two instances of the mouth of this thing so if I double click on this this is just the head of the robot with the mouth uh turned on basically called it on and then this is with the mouth off so I made it so the mouth kind of had like on off light switch and I did that just with photo show players and kept you know, kept them kept them separated by two different uh to different layers here so let's let's ...

go close that one off ups get up here we go and what I ended up doing was taking a uh an effect on a solid layer here and there is an effect called audio spectrum and I am trying to remember where that is let me see ifit's in our effects here it may have been in is it in here? No, um might be and this is where I go over here to my effects and presets and I click on the search for audio spectrum and that would be found under generate this tells me and when I do a search for a plug in or in effect uh, this tells me under what category it is found so it's under generate and so I would go to here with this gray solid layer that's what god is just a great solid layer um that I've, um, asking right now using it as a mask so I would then choose this generate and then audio spectrum and what this does is when I've added that to it and I've got two variations of it it's going to say where's your audio layer I've got this video down here in the bottom, so I'm selecting that as my source for this and then what do I want it to do that got colors and let me go to the original one here because I've actually created that already? I don't need to redo that I've already got it here and so I'm creating a mask out of it and what it does is it takes the spectral data of that audio layer and it digitizes it turns it into a digital signal so what that will do for us here it takes a spectral data and I'm trying to see what happened to because I just killed it note there it came back okay, so that's spectral data should somewhat match the spectral data of the voiceover so if I look at my wave form that spectral data in there should closely match this so as it peaks there on the weii formed down there it kind of peaks up there but it also moves a little bit that they kind of drags it across the moves it well the reason why I used it as a mask instead of as a solid was for one thing it's white that was my color and look how the spectral data goes outside the parameters of her mouth so I used it as a mask inside my uh inside the mouth here where it only only affected the, uh the inside edges of the pink file which is the mouth itself so if it didn't if it goes outside the mouth area at all, it won't it won't show up so anyway that's one quick way of doing this and actually I can play it so you can hear it and see it work that's right ladies and gentlemen it's time for the most popular game show in the solar system thanks those fees okay so that um that's just the head of course this is one uh one part one layer deep of this where I had to animate the character so just kind of had to animate the character moving around a little bit that's right ladies and gentlemen it's time for the most popular game show in the solar system thanks those fees okay again corporate videos people are trying to get more clever witham and have more fun with them now and I applaud that because it gives more work to animate her scent creative people and I think too that this type of work inspires people it inspires them to act on the message that they'll listen to the message because it's creative maybe corny it may be fun maybe funny they're making fun of an industry they're making fun of something and I think that's important because you know so many people watch youtube or they're on facebook or their social media some kind even at work it's become part of your your workplace now so if you do something that's going to catch e somebody might send it to you somebody might share it it gets the message out there and I am a little bit on a soap box there pat it I guess but but really it's it is just a matter of of having fun with it and so I applaud these companies for investing their their money and time into creating these messages and I'm happy to be part of developing some of them so this particular scene this is the whole opening scene and what I wanted to show you is that I've got a three d camera pulling out from their justus if it was a tv camera so it pulls out and the rest of the content shows up in there so we'll just do a quick ram preview that's right ladies and gentlemen it's time for the most popular game show in the solar system fix those fees okay, so that's just a bunch of illustrator layers like I showed yesterday uh animated and we've got every every everything I've been showing you is what I do in re a life I mean if I look at my arms my hands it's just like the skeleton structure so even though you won't be able to download this particular project with these thiss contents and that you'll be able to with the last thing because this belongs to the client, you'll still be able to exercise all of the same type of animation pieces that I showed you on the very first day. So all of the content that you're you'll be getting when you downloaded by this uh this workshop you'll be able teo achieve pretty much everything that we showed today even even this type of work so that's one way of animating audio um and another is kind of what we're doing with, um, the last one to we're actually trying to sink some some audio to a stack of images and that's done with a couple different couple different things we have to do here, we do get into expressions a bit, but it's nothing scary like, oh, my gosh, I've got to write code now, because I totally horror writing code I gave gave up doing web design when the whizz e wig editors kind of went away and I of his laws ago, no, no more code, because it changes all the time, and I can't keep up with that might be brain is too stuck on visual thing, so that's, why dive into stuff? I kind of stay away from code whenever I have to, and this way of working lets you do that without, you know, having to get too deep into it. So what I've got here is, let's, look at just the mouth of this character, and this is another robot that talks this one has a much more robotic voice, and it kind of goes crazy in this one part of this, this scene, and I had the photo work with to do the timing, so again, I've just got like the other one, I had an on and off for the for the mouth the same thing here I've got an on and off and this one the on is just the lighting inside the base because those overlay the actual robot itself so they're just two frames this is one comp that is two frames long that's it just on and off it's like a switch okay, so going back to this one now what I've done is I've got the audio here's a voiceover is in here then I've got the actual robot he rolls around on a little wheel and that's that base and then I've got clothes that up then I've got that uh the comp that has the on and off switch on it so what I have to do here going to just delete that and I'm going to delete a couple things so I can show you the process it's the best way to do it delete delete key pretty expression and turn that off okay, so now I've just got the on off of the, uh, mouth layer of that it's just two two frames long so you're not going to really see anything. So what I have to do though is on that comet that has the on and off mouth switch I just have to change my timing on it so I right click on it come up to time and on this one I go to enable time remapping okay and that gives me one key frame here so I just leave that alone and then I come down here to my uh because this this a f files my voice over and I right click on it and I come up to ki frame assistant and select convert audio two key frames it's the only thing highlighted under key frame assistant if I select that audio channel so I do that in it automatically creates a new layer for me with the left and right channel and both channels uh separated out with the speculator amplitude audio amplitude data that's kind of like if you want to visualize what that looks like that's like what we saw in the very first example where the wave form but it shows amplitude and that's the data that we want here so that generated that automatically. The only thing I've done is I've brought in the comp with the on off switch and I've selected the audio uh layer and did the key frame assistant for converting to audio amplitude. So now what I do is I twirl down the effects and this should be mono but it separates it out anyway so I go to both channels that twirl that down and I see it's got this little slider word the word slider down here and if you're hungry that may make you want a hamburger right now little many hamburger so that that I need to be able to see so down here on this the on off switch one I've got my, uh it's already got a stopwatch selected as made a key frame but I want to enable this layer to have a neck sprechen so all I do is ah, hold down the option or all turkey and I clicked that stopwatch once and noticed that it shows the expression time remap because I've already said I want to do a time re map of this so it's got that expression already loaded in there and any time I see an expression loaded in there it scares me oh my gosh what's the code I have to type in there well, I don't have to type in the code that's what's great c r a little cinnamon roll over here the little pick whip that's the expression pick whip all I have to do is click that and drag it up to this word slider on the audio amplitude channel and let go and look at populates all of this code in here. But now I do have to type in some code just a little bit and this is something I get to play with, so I'm going to give it a space and then a forward slash and then I like to start around two hundred and what that means is it's telling it that the time remapping of this channel that a little on and off switch is going to look at the data of the audio amplitude and then divide it by two hundred that's all we're saying there that's the slash means divide by and then two hundred that's where I start in the reason why I say that's where I start is because I play it back and see how it matches and does the light come on at the right time or doesn't it? I may have to say divide by two fifty or divide by three hundred or divide by one fifty I may go both directions till I see that it matches well because the varying factors in there are what level was the audio originally recorded at you know it was that peeked enough is it too peaked eyes in a male or female voice? Some often pick up differently, so there are a lot of variables in there that can affect this. So anyway, I'm going to do a ramp review here, I think we have a little quick question. Yes, why the number two hundred I wanted to because I've done this a while and I that's where I start every time I've done anything with audio with voice audio and I want teo affect this, I started two hundred and, um there's there's there's no logic to it it just seems to be the right number to start with so because I said so I don't question my authority it's the last day I get a little punchy here and I I haven't been on caffeine either so I'm proud of myself for that okay so let's listen to this ramp review here and see how well it did me pull this down so we can see our effect I want to cancel my contract at any time I want to reduce users after the first year I want to retroactively re price users I need to pay later as I don't have okay so it's it's a little bit behind that so I'm going to go to two fifty we'll try that and you have to click out of it otherwise he'll do a return to the code so we'll re render that see if that's a little closer I want to cancel my contract at any time I want to reduce users after the first year I want to retroactively re price users I need to pay later as I don't have the budget right now I want I need I want I need by one tiny okay so that's a little closer I'm going to stop it at that so we can go on to the scene and see how that ends up working out so again I start with just the mouth that is just the on and off uh then I come in and I create my audio amplitude from the audio layer then I take the pic whip of the expression up to the slider of the effect for both channels of audio so I get the most audio and then I divide by a start around two hundred and work both directions till it looks like it locks in so also I guess to answer that point too I started two hundred mainly if I have something is like two stages two frames sometimes I may go a little a little maur if I've got like five levels of mouth movement or something that's got to do an array of things so sometimes you gotta play with that and it's very subjective you gotta play back and forth and back and forth if I don't do anything at all it may just stay on one b they're on or off so you have to divide by a certain number to really make it activated so again this there's math but there's kind of suggestive math so um here isthe the scene and uh let me do it this way now I modified the scene here too a bit because there were other characters in there I just wanted to focus on the robot so let's uh do a quick ran preview there and we'll see again all after effects animation with layers of stuff from illustrator and okay, I want to cancel my contract at any time I want to reduce users after the first year I want to retroactively re price users I need to pay later as I don't have the budget right now I want I need I want I need by one tiny I want so he's kind of burning up there he's smoking he's kind of an old tired robot so so anyway that's again using all of the same same animation techniques that we've been covering all this time with rotating moving stuff in space moving in three d space I don't have a camera on this well, I do have a camera on this because I do pull out that's, right? So the camera pulls out but everything is moving in three d space and ze space and that's how I'm adjusting the scale in the rotation and everything but again going back I've got, um sub sub calms that have animation in them and I'm bringing them into the master comp so I don't have to try to do all my animation right here make everything track and pat and follow everything so nesting calms nesting cops in applying a lot of the same animation techniques so okay, so now I'm going teo another project that you will be able to play with and this is just a three stage sequence with a mouth that opens and closes and that was just an illustration um this actually the original panel came from uh my stock photo and it had a hole siri's of mouth shapes on it and I just picked three that worked well together and did a mask on them so if you look at them individually there was a sheet of like nine and I picked three that looked like they'd worked together to make a nice um mouth animation so that kind of does that so there's my three, um three lips and then I've done that process and actually I'll repeat it again for you here when you download this, it'll already be applied so but I do want to go over it again so you'll see it how it works. So the first thing I do is I have my lips stack, which is the mouth whatever your mouth movements are there's three frames and that's it then it goes blank, so the first thing I do is I enable timely mapping on that so right click on the layer, go to time enable timely mapping that will give me a key frame here. Actually I only want the first key frame I don't want that extra one added, so I think it did that because I had that's what I need to do when you've got more than two anon anon off you have to, um I think you have to tell it that its going toe lock so what I have to do is toggle hold key frames I think that's what needs to happen there? I've got three stages, not just two I've got three I want to do a toggle hold key frame on that first key frame get rid of any that it may create good good point to add in there then I select my audio ah layer and I right click on it. Go up to key frame assistant convert audio two key frames that creates this audio amplitude layer I twirled down till I get the effects open make sure I can see the one for both channels because that's where most of the information is and then down here on my, uh array of my mouth movements I will opt option or alter click the stopwatch that's gonna open up my expressions I just click the little pick, whip up its and drag it over the word slider on the audio amplitude layer and then I just forward slash and then this one will go to fifty because I've got three segments in there that should work so I haven't heard this yet. Wei had lovely l evelyn record this audio for us at the lunch break and I just stuck it in there so I haven't even heard this yet so this is going to be a true test here and see how this works. So let me make sure where our mouth is moving. Yes. Okay, so we'll all hear it. First you're watching after effects with jeff foster live on creative life. You're watching after foster live on creative life. So I think that's pretty cool. Thank you. Thank you. So that's, I think that's. Pretty cool. That's. A pretty cool trick on dh again. That was with audio. I hadn't even heard yet. So that's really fun, teo, to see that work. So if I was to now put that on a cartoon face and then put that cartoon phase on a cartoon body and put that cartoon body in a cartoon scene, you see how you develop all of that on dh. You could do that with any sequence of anything. You could take a photograph. You could do kind of your own jib jab type thing. You know, we got the the jaws that drop. You know, you could do that with people's photos. You could do that kind of and that's kind of how you do that kind of thing here, that's. All done with with other programming, but but you can mimic that type of look here using this array type of sequence.

Class Description

Adobe® After Effects® Creative Cloud® is a hallmark broadcast video and film production program — but it has so many functions, it’s hard to know where to start. In this essential video-editing class, renowned video producer and Adobe® Certified Expert Jeff Foster will walk you through how to use the many functions of Adobe® After Effects® to enhance your projects with visual effects and motion graphics.

You’ll learn the basics for controlling movement, animating simple objects and 3D space, create interesting text and title animations, composite videos with and without green screen. Using real-world production examples, Jeff will guide you through this complex program and unpack the tools and terminology so that you can apply your skills right away and with confidence.

Software Used: Adobe After Effects CC (12.0)