Luca Visual FX Progress Bars v2 is a pack of 20 generators and eight effects, including an object tracker. They provide a wide variety of progress, loading, processing bars and rings as well as gauges and hi-tech motion graphics to overlay over any media. It’s distributed by FxFactory.
Universe, Red Giant Software’s subscription-based plug-in for Adobe After Effects and seven other NLEs and compositing apps, has been updated to version 3.1 and incorporates some interesting new modules.
Ripple Tools Complete for Final Cut Pro X promises to give you a full set of effects, most of them based on the title concept of FCP X of which many are trackable. Many effects that you can buy in one plug-in are either so simple you can create them faster using Final Cut Pro X’s built-in tools or so cheesy it hurts your eyes. I’m happy to say neither is the case with Ripple Tools Complete.
Clip Studio Paint EX is the most complete suite of drawing and painting tools available from Celsys in Japan. It’s perceived as the biggest competitor of Corel Painter. Both these apps were designed for creators who love to draw and paint with a brush feel that comes close to the real-world thing, but Clip Studio is also a complete comic strip and animation creations tool.
Creating 3D titles in Final Cut Pro X and Motion is relatively easy, but creating complete 3D scenes is virtually impossible. Motion isn’t After Effects, but with Reelpath’s Eneo3D plug-in it comes very close to offering a one-stop solution to all your compositing needs.
There are five new text effects and a brand new dashboard in Universe 3.0. I tried the new version with Final Cut Pro X and Motion, and while the dashboard still needs some tweaking, the new text effects were brilliant for enhancing sci-fi and thriller movies.
For special effects like HUDs, graphs that move and text that floats through ballooning organic forms, many blockbuster 3D compositing artists use Yanobox’s Nodes. The FxFactory plug-in for After Effects, Final Cut Pro X, Premiere Pro and Motion has become an industry standard. Nodes 3 is the latest version of the generator, which I tested with the latest version of Apple Motion.
Corel Painter is often used to paint compositing stills. The new update brings new brushes, a refreshed interface and some other new features, like a colour wheel that you can move to anywhere on your canvas.
Animation for anything from presentations to games and goofy Youtube movies is possible with CrazyTalk Animator 3. This, the developer says, is the world’s easiest 2D animation software that enables all levels of users to create professional animations with the least amount of effort, and I agree – up to a point.
Photoshop and Illustrator, as well as Affinity Designer and Photo, allow you to create patterns that you can use and reuse as backgrounds, desktop or real-world wallpaper, etc. They all require you to start from a vector or bitmap image and then work out how to make it seamlessly repeating. Patternodes has found a simpler, more user-friendly way to do it.