How We Used Kinetic Typography To Tell the Cumberland CID Story.

By arranging type in the shape of skyscrapers and landmarks, we created a memorable video.

 They've Invested Hundreds of Millions of Dollars on Roads, Bridges, Parks and Other Improvements. We Needed a Visual Solution.

When I started work on this video for the Cumberland CID, it seemed simple enough. The basic idea was to have words stack on top of each other and form the shapes of buildings and landmarks. Since the purpose of the Cumberland CID is to promote community improvements, it made sense.

However, executing the idea wasn't so simple. I'd never done kinetic typography before, and had a lot to learn in its execution.

We used type to mimick the shapes of familiar landmarks, like the Cobb Energy Centre.Animating Type Is a Lot of Work

First of all, there was the moving type—that's easy enough to do in After Effects, but if you look closely, the type doesn't move at a uniform rate. It kind of bounces to a stop.

That's accomplished using a plug-in called "Ease and Wizz" that adjusts motion in kind of a cartoony way.

I designed the type to resemble Cumberland CID landmarks. For example, to mimic the rounded shape of the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center, I added a "bulge" effect to that type.

The layers were also 3D, enabling me to control depth as well as height and width. That's how I was able to give the type perspective, and position the building shapes relative to each other.

But by far, the biggest learning curve came with moving the camera. In After Effects, you can adjust the camera location, changing the POV. That's how I was able to zoom in to individual words or buildings, then widen out to see the big picture.

We also incorporated stock illustration and iconography.

Kinetic Typography Requires Lots of Layers

The finished video ended up being hundreds of individual layers, including every line of type, every illustration and and a few video clips. In hindsight, the best thing about this project is it forced me to learn the intricacies of After Effects, and become comfortable creating animation.

Today, I use After Effects more than any other editing program.


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