There are a thousand reasons why video is so popular these days, but nothing more important than the fact that it’s social media, and more particularly Tik Tok and Instagram, which are really giving the required impulse to make video what it’s at the moment. It has become so relevant that most of what is advertised in this era comes through video. For example, in the trailer of a YouTube video with some sort of “vine” about 5-7 seconds long, up to full advertising videos about 2-3 minutes long showing the unboxing of some product, for example.
In such a context, there’s nothing left to wonder as to why video is in such an important place. Most influencers are doing it, creating content ranging from comic videos to tutorials, as well as showing parts of their average day-to-day life. And as Hollywood established a few decades ago, there’s nothing more important in filming than giving that “movie” or, in this case, “short” that dose of spectacularity that seems to be a “must” in everything these days.
According to some in the Video Editor’s Guild, any job interview starts with a famous (or not so famous) influencer, asking them immediately if they can use some after-effects in their videos. And they also seem to be quite disappointed in the editor if his answer isn’t satisfactory. Even when most video workers have some knowledge to some extent of using Adobe After Effects on some professional end, their demands sometimes exceed what anyone can imagine.
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The Race for More
It has become some sort of competition amongst influencers, some sort of “cold war” in terms of no direct aggression (something that does happen), but in the field of creating the most innovative video of the bunch. Using new effects, creative angles, and even adding some stuff that might not be there to a short, just to get a few more interactions than their competitors.
In some cases, this “war” has resorted to the use of esthetic surgery, travelling to really dangerous places, like some influencers visiting the surroundings of the Chernobyl Sarcophagus, absorbing a semi-lethal dose of radiation, and, of course, adding popular music to their ever innovative dances. This is particularly true on social media like TikTok, where in western culture the algorithm seems to favor people doing “silly” things rather than the more tutorial-based algorithm that the social media platform uses in China.
There are some important critics of this movement and where it is leading our youth, but the fact is that it’s great news for those in the video industry. Not so much for cameramen or sound technicians, because most influencers do it themselves or have some “friends” teams that handle that part, and even when some do, most of them don’t know how to professionally edit video to the level of adding cool after effects and other sorts of video edition that only a professional can do.
What are the Coolest Things You Can Do With After Effects?
There are hundreds of libraries of effects that can be added with some touch, adding a lot to a sometimes dull and uninteresting video, especially when most of the kids (and some adults pretending to be young) do the same dance in tandem for a week or two. And this is when the “race” begins, with the majority of them attempting to have the best effect for their video, whether it’s a cool intro or a great transition to music, they will always be looking for something more.
So if you are a video editor looking to expand your repertoire, here are some of the best things you can do to get hold of what it’s being used for at the moment and increase your chances of landing one of the “cool” jobs of today editing videos for influencers and making some money at the same time:
- Green Screen and Composing: There’s something that most of the big influencers have, and that’s budget, but also, if you have a good illuminated room, you can invest in green cloth and cover it smoothly. After that, with a little camera movement, good frames, and coordinated action, you can have them on the moon or in the insides of an erupting volcano. It doesn’t matter, even if they ask you to have them on the floor of the SuperBowl. It can be done with green screen.
- Kinetic typography: one of the trends that will emerge in 2021 is the use of moving typography, which is becoming increasingly popular, to the point where you can’t find a modern piece of social media advertising that doesn’t include them. And, of course, influencers want it.
- 2D illustration and animation: what used to take ages of animation, now you can do it within hours with after effects, creating animated shorts for those eccentric kids that want to have their faces in famous cartoons, or for those people that really want to deliver an important message and are too shy to show themselves.