Creating a Planet

The starring element of this project is a stormy planet revolving in space. There are a number of ways to create a convincing sphere in After Effects without any plug-ins, but those methods are pretty laborious. Instead, you'll use a Boris FX effect devoted to making spheres; it gives you more control over your sphere's attributes than you'll ever need, including multiple ways to apply texture and animate the globe.


This section requires the BCC Sphere effect from the Boris FX Continuum Complete collection of effects. If you don't have this collection installed, you can install a trial version of it from this book's DVD.

Follow these steps:


Select the Sphere layer, choose Layer > Pre-Compose, select the Move All Attributes option, and click OK. You pre-compose your Sphere layer so that the Sphere effect maps the solid's image after the three other effects have been applied to the solid.


Select the Sphere Comp 1 layer, and choose Effect > BBC3 Distortion& Perspective > BCC Sphere. The default values for this effect work very well to start.

Settings for the BCC Sphere effect in the Effect Controls window

The Sphere Comp 1 layer using the BCC Sphere effect


Go to time 3:00, add a Spin keyframe in the effect's Geometry group, and set it to 0x0.0.


Press End to go to time 9:29, and change the Spin value to 1x0.0. These keyframes make the sphere turn one full revolution.

At time 7:00, you can see the rear of the sphere where the left and right edges of the solid layer meet, creating an undesirable seam in the sphere's skin. You'll fix this in the next step.

The sphere's seam destroys the illusion.


Expand the effect's Faces group, and change the Wrap property's value to Back And Forth Repeat.

The effect's Wrap property makes the sphere seamless.

    Adobe After Effects 6.5 Magic
    Adobe After Effects 6.5 Magic
    ISBN: 0321267230
    EAN: 2147483647
    Year: 2005
    Pages: 236

    Similar book on Amazon © 2008-2017.
    If you may any questions please contact us: