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How to Make a Mother's Day Greeting Video in After Effects

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Difficulty:BeginnerLength:ShortLanguages:

This year, Mother's Day in the UK is the 14th March and elsewhere it's May 10th. Whether you're panicking for a last minute gift or have a little more time, you can never go wrong by making a personal video for your mum, gran, or other special mother-figure in your life.

In this tutorial we'll show you how to make a special Mother's Day greeting quickly and easily with a professionally created After Effects template.

Resources Used

Here's a list of everything that was used in the tutorial, it's all available as part of a subscription to Envato Elements.

Template

Happy Mother's Day

Here's a preview of the template we'll use. We're going to start from this template and make a personalised video.

Images

Footage

Audio

How to Make a Mother's Day Greeting Video in After Effects

1. Open the Template

In the Project panel you’ll see organized folders and the final composition, which is usefully called ‘Final Composition’. In the Assets folder you’ll find elements that makeup the template effects, things like bokeh, transitions, the rose petals and so on. In Photo-Media there are the image or footage sub-compositions that you’ll be altering. 

Open up the template
Open up the template

Pre-Comp is more sub-compositions, things like the background and heart effect. These make up the core of the template so you won’t need or want to alter them. Solid contains one white and one light red solid colour. This is part of the template background effect, if you’re adding footage then you won’t really see it much, but if you were to leave gaps between media in the template then it creates a nice effect and there’d be a gap without it. Text is as you’d expect, text sub-compositions where you’ll write your message(s).

2. Add Images and Footage

Now let's start adding media.

Add images and footage
Add images and footage

Open the Photo-Media folder and go to Photo-Media 1. Ignore the individually numbered ones as these contain the decorative elements around where your media will be placed.

Drag your media into the Project panel and Timeline
Drag your media into the Project panel and Timeline

Drag your footage or photo into the Project panel. It doesn’t matter where you put it but if you like to keep things neat you can create your own folder. From there, drag it into your Timeline, at the top. Below, there’s a text placeholder just to show you where to put the footage. If your footage is above it you won’t see it anyway (unless you’re using alpha channel) but it’s probably best to hide it just in case.

Repeat with other media
Repeat with other media

Repeat the previous steps working down the ‘Photo Media’ list and inserting your photos or video. If you don’t want to add 10 items you can hide the extra ones. Don’t delete them or you’ll delete the Solids and other effects and end up with a weird gap in your video. Remember to hide the text placeholder that shows you where to put your footage or you’ll see ‘Place your photos’ appearing in your film.

3. Resize Images or Footage

Your images are likely an assortment of sizes and resolutions, so now we'll conform them all to fit the video.

Resizing images or footage
Resizing images or footage

In Timeline, drop down Transform and make Position and Scale adjustments until your media fits.

Check in Final Comp to see a preview
Check in Final Comp to see a preview

In Project go to Final Composition and preview your video to make sure everything fits properly and works well.

4. Add and Change the Text

You'll need to add your own message too, of course.

How to change text
How to change text

In Project go to the Text folder and open Text 1.

Click on the individual text compositions
Click on the individual text compositions

You’ll see text on a transparent background, and also that text in your composition timeline

Click on each text layer to change it
Click on each text layer to change it

Double-click on the text you want to change and type your message.

Use the Character panel to change font, colour, size and style
Use the Character panel to change font, colour, size and style

In the Character panel you can then make changes to your font, colour, style and size.

Changes to the end text need to fit in the heart
Changes to the end text need to fit in the heart

The text at the end in the heart is editable too but you’ll need to check any changes you make carefully to make sure it still fits the template.

5. Add Music

Now we add some backing music.

Add music to your project
Add music to your project

In the same way as you did with your footage, drag your music into the Project panel and then into your final composition timeline.

Add music to the final composition timeline
Add music to the final composition timeline

If you need to adjust your music, then in the Effects panel you’ll find quick adjustments like fade in and out.

6. Render!

When you’ve checked your changes, go to File > Export and render out your video. Remember to keep file types and sizes reasonable if you’re sending it out as a greeting. Anything too big or too difficult to open might be a stumbling block for a potential recipient.

Render your project
Render your project

Here's the finished example video:

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