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Cool Sites And Blogs To Help You Improve Your After Effects Skills!

Updated on June 24, 2015

Quick Points

  • Awesome Video tutorials
  • More AE help in the forums
  • Downloadable AE templates
  • Plug-ins available for purchase


AE is the main program used in Video Copilot to create Vfx, but sometimes other software is used such as 3ds Max, and Cinema 4d.

Video Copilot

If you're trying to improve your VFX skills, and haven't checked out Video Copilot then you are truly missing out.

Packed with step by step tutorials, and amazing AE tips/tricks, Video Copilot is one of the best websites to hone your ever growing CGI skills—with After Effects that is (hence the title of this article).

Video Copilot is loaded with over 150 captivating tutorials! You probably (most likely) won't be able to get through them all within a day (or week), but that's a good thing. The more help, and inspiration you get the better your creative ability (and mindset).

A lot of the cool awesome tutorials on Video Copilot feature futuristic hubs, healing abilities, scary face warps, soul removals, green screens, and fancy titles (there's a whole lot more, but naming them would take a while) so you'll be going from amateur to VFX pro in mere seconds—if you're up for the challenge that is.

In addition to the cool mind blowing tutorials on Video Copilot, you can also check out their forum. Video Copilot's forum has hundreds of VFX creators like yourself that help each other out on mirroring effects from movies as well as brainstorming on new effects to create in AE.

Check Out this Awesome Video from Video Copilot?

Mastering After Effects

What's your level in AE?

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Quick Points:

  • Uses plug-ins such as trapcode
  • Contains step by step Video tutorials
  • Free to use

Reverse Shatter text tutorial

Gray Machine

Another great site to use to pump up your After Effects skills is Gray Machine as it breaks down its tutorials (like video copilot) to help you create great effects.

Gray Machine uses a lot of trap code in its latest videos which has to be purchased for AE in order for the effects to work (this for some is a turn off). But don't brush Gray Machine aside for this minor flaw as its earlier After Effects tutorials show you how to create eyecatching effects without plug-ins.

In addition to the above Gray Machine uses other software besides AE such as Cinema 4d, and mocha (an After Effects plug-in mostly used for motion tracking) so if your also into these different types of software then you're in for a treat.


Quick Points:

  • Plenty of After Effects video tutorials
  • Plug-ins used to create a few of the effects

AE tuts+

Tuts+ is an amazing site to use to master your After Effects skills. Tuts shows you how to create multiple effects in After Effects from Hollywood titles like the Hunger Games: Catching Fire, and Chronicles of Riddick to in depth animation and precomposition.


Quick Points:

  • 20+ video tutorials to get you sstarted
  • Vids are also available on youtube
  • Free downloadable templates are available

Watch this cool tutorial from Vfx Bro

Vfx Bro

If you want to start off with relatively easy, and simple tutorials (some not all, and this also depends on your skill set—intermediate or advanced) you might want to pay a little visit to Vfx Bro.

With a little over 20 free video tutorials VFX bro can help you improve your creative CGI abilities, especially if you're into slow motion effects as well as motion tracking.

With VFX Bro's After Effects tutorials you can learn how to clone multiple objects/people, how to motion track text within your video, and cool hologram effects.

If learning from Vfx Bro's 20+ videos isn't enough, you can download some of their pre-made templates for more inspiration. These free Vfx templates include intros, split screens, pop ups, shape animations, and more!


Quick Points:

  • You'll learn how to animate 2d characters
  • 7 Video tutorials on Vimeo
  • Tutorial's primary focus is animation

Check Out Chapter 1

Ryan Boyle's Animation AE tutorials on Vimeo

There are a lot of AE tutorials to be found on Vimeo as well as YouTube, but for now since we're focusing on improving our AE skills let's focus a bit on Animation.

If you're ever wanted to create a simple animation in After Effects you should take a look at Ryan Boyle's video Animation tutorials. In this short six chapter series Ryan teaches you how to design, animate, and Lip sync your character.

Ryan also teaches you how to set up your background, lighting, and cameras to bring your full animation to life. If you're up to refine your skills in animating objects, and characters in After Effects this could be your first step in the right direction.


See It In Action!

Quick Points:

  • Great for beginners to advanced
  • Lots of tutorials available
  • Pricing: $29.00 basic - $49.00 Pro
  • In-depth Video tutorials

Digital Tutors

Are you ready to take your After Effects skills to the next level? A level that you've never imagine? A level that you've never thought possible?

Then are you willing to pay for it?

If your answer to the above is yes then you should check out Digital Tutors. Digital Tutors offers in-depth tutorials—some spanning over 5 hours long—in order to bring you the best it has to offer in After Effects.

With Digital tutors you can learn how to use track mattes, composite 3d elements as well as futuristic menus, and more.

Digital tutors makes improving your creative AE skills easy!

Pricing plans start as low as $29.00 and up to $49.00 to be able to download AE template files.


Quick Points

  • Teaches through Video tutorials
  • Tutorials revolve around slow motion and tracking

Creative Dojo

Not to be overlooked is VinhSon Nguyen's Creative Dojo. The site isn't as loaded with video tutorials as Video Copilot or AE tuts, but it can still teach you a thing or two to improve as well as inspire your CGI abilities.

If you're into using a lot of plug-ins such as element 3d or trap code particular then you can learn a lot of creative new tips, and tricks from Creative Dojo.

If you're not that into buying plug-ins after paying a hefty price for After Effects, there are still video tutorials available without the use of plug-ins.

A few quick things you can learn at Creative Dojo:

  • Building 3d space environments with images and distortion
  • Creating watercolor stop motion style in AE
  • Creating realistic muzzle flash compositing

Other than AE Creative Dojo uses cinema 4D to also create awesome effects.


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