After Effects scripts

Click 
here to download all After Effects tools as a single file.

Click here to view change log (updates).

sb AutoRender

This script automatically sets up render paths, allowing you to keep a clean folder structure and a consequent naming convention.

In order for the script to work correctly, you must specify a root folder, which will be the base path of your renders. There are a few different ways to specify the root folder:

  • Search word: Search for a specific word in the project file path and use that as the root folder. 
  • Environment variables: If you're among of the crazy ones that launch After Effects from a custom launch tool or via the command line, you have the option to set the root folder using environment variables.
  • Project folder: Use the folder where the project file is saved as the root folder.
  • Custom folder: Specify a custom root folder.
All of the settings in this script are saved between sessions, so if you're working with a similar folder structure between different projects, chances are you only have to do the setup once.

For more information, click the "?" button in the script.


sb ImportNukeScene

This script allows you to import 3d objects, exported from The Foundry's Nuke.

It's common for studios to use both Nuke and After Effects in their pipeline, and when doing so it's often very useful to be able to transfer cameras and simple geometry between the applications.

For example, you might be doing the final composite in Nuke, but you want to jump over to After Effects to create some motion graphics elements and render those using the same camera that you use in Nuke.

Currently the script supports (animated) Camera, Axis and Card nodes, which will be translated to Camera, Null and Solid (3d) layers in After Effects.

To export objects from Nuke, use sb ExportNukeSceneToAE.

For more information, click the "?" button in the script.

sb ViewerProcess    

This script simplifies the process of setting up a viewer process layer within After Effects, and will work similar to the Viewer LUT drop-down menu in Nuke.

In most cases a viewer process consists of a LUT, but there's nothing stopping you from including a more advanced setup, such as a letterbox, grain etc. If you can save your setup as an animation preset, it can be used as a viewer process.

In the settings window you can specify a folder path that the script will search for animation presets upon launch. If a preset is found, it will be added to the drop-down list.

All settings are kept between sessions.

The technique is based upon the OpenColorIO sample project by Brendan Bolles.


sb Glow   

This script creates a glow with an exponential falloff, resulting in both a more visually pleasing image, and a more realistic looking result.

Let's be honest, the built-in glow in most compositing applications isn't very sexy. The reason for this is that the build-in glows are made up of a single blur that is added back over the top. To get a glow with a hard edge and a soft falloff, you'll want to combine several glows with different blur sizes.

Click here for a great article regarding glows.

sb LightWrap   

This script creates a light wrap effect, improving the blending between foreground and background layers.

Light wrap's have gained a bad reputation after being overused over the years. But still, if used gently, the effect can help sell your shot.

You will often get the a better result by applying two light wraps, one with a small amount of blur and high opacity, and one with a larger amount of blur with a lower opacity. This will create somewhat of an exponential falloff, which will give a more realistic looking effect.

The light wrap technique is built upon a method outlined in Mark Christiansen's book After Effects Studio Techniques.


sb EdgeBlend

This script will create an edge blend effect between the foreground and background layers.

Edge blend is different from an edge blur, as it will blur both the foreground and the background pixels by a given matte.

The edge blend effect, much like a light wrap, has been overused and gained a bad reputation. That being said, keeping the blend at a very low amount will often help your edges.

The edge blend technique is outlined in Mark Christiansen's book After Effects Studio Techniques.

sb ImportRenderTemplates

This script allows you to import render and output settings from a template project.

After Effects CC introduced a way to sync render/output templates via the Cloud, but I still find it more convenient to use this script and template projects, as it's easy to make sure that the same templates are available to all artists on all workstations.

Template projects for render/output settings are included in the download. It's important to use the same formatting when adding new settings to the project file.