Creating a Surface Reflection

You're getting close to completing the project. The next task is to create a surface reflection of the text. You'll apply several effects to a single layer to simulate a moving shadow reflected on the floor of the scene:


Duplicate the Text layer, and rename the new (top) layer Text Reflection.


Expand the Text Reflection layer's Transform group, and change the Scale to 125, -570 to enlarge and invert the image.

You don't need to be concerned about Title Safe in this case because the layer will be a shadow, not the main title.

Starting to build the text reflection


To remove the Ramp, Bevel Alpha, and Drop Shadow effects from the Text Reflection layer, select the layer and choose Effect > Remove All.


Apply Effect > Blur & Sharpen > Directional Blur to the Text Reflection layer. Set the effect's Direction to 0 x +90 and its Blur Length to 15.

Settings for the Directional Blur effect

Almost finished creating the text reflection


To make it easy to reshape and distort the reflection, apply Effect > Distort > Corner Pin to the Text Reflection layer.


To align the reflection with the title, set the Corner Pin effect's values to the following:

Upper Left: 135, 45

Upper Right: 582, 45

Lower Left: 0, 486

Lower Right: 720, 486

Save and preview your work.

Settings for the Corner Pin effect in the Effect Controls window

The distorted text reflection

Cleaning up the reflection

Currently, the letter g in the Text Reflection layer protrudes above the horizon, which is unrealistic and interferes with the text's shadow. So, let's quickly clean that up by masking only the area you want the layer to display:

  • Use the Rectangular Mask tool to draw a box around the reflection layer, starting in the bottom right or left corner of the comp and stopping somewhere below the horizon so that the text reflection no longer appears above the horizon.

You may notice that the top edge of the mask doesn't cut off the letters as expected, even if the mask edge is at the horizon. That's because the Text Reflection layer is distorted with the Corner Pin effect.

Trimming the Text Reflection layer with a mask

Click the Ram Preview button in the Time Controls palette to review the results.

Select All, Drill Them Up, Lock Them Down, and Save

The keyboard shortcuts for these actions can save you lots of time and protect your project from accidental changes:

  • Select All Layers: Ctrl+A (Windows) or Command+A (Mac OS)

  • Drill Them Up: Accent key (layers must be selected)

  • Lock Them Down: Ctrl+L (Windows) or Command+L (Mac OS)

  • Save: Ctrl+S (Windows) or Command+S (Mac OS)

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

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