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  1. 3D & Motion Graphics
  2. Blender
Cgi

Create a Text Reveal Motion Graphic in Blender: Part 1

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Difficulty:IntermediateLength:LongLanguages:

Preview

Method One: Using Render Layers

Step 1

In a new file, press A on the keyboard to select all default objects. Press Delete key to delete them. 

Press 1 in the numpad to get into front view. Press 5 to toggle off perspective mode. Press Shift-A and add Text.

Add text
Add text

With the text object selected, press Tab to enter edit mode. Change the text to anything you want. Press Tab again to exit edit mode.

Edit text
Edit text

Step 2

With the text object selected, click on the F button in the properties editor to see font settings. In the Font panel, click on the folder button and browse for your favourite font.

Text font settings
Text and font settings

Step 3

Press Shift-A and add a Mesh > Plane.

Add a plane
Add a plane

Step 4

Press Tab to enter edit mode. Press A to select all vertices. Press S and then X to scale it along the X axis. Match the height and width of the plane with the text.

Editing the plane
Editing the plane

You can move the vertices up and down instead of scaling. Hold Shift and then secondary-click on vertices for multiple selection. 

Use the arrow widget to move them. Press Z to toggle between wireframe and solid shade mode. Press Tab to exit edit mode.

Editing the plane
Editing the plane

Step 5

Secondary-click on the Text and then move it back just a little bit with help of arrow widgets.

Move the text behind the plane
Move the text behind the plane

Step 6

With the text selected, click on the Materials button in the properties editor. Click on the New button to add a new material. 

Add new material to text
Add new material to text

Change the name of the material to text or anything you want. In the Diffuse panel, change the color to white. In the Shading panel, tick the Shadeless checkbox.

Material settings
Material settings

Step 7

Ensure you're in front view. Press 1 in the number pad to get into front view. Press Shift-A and add a camera.

Add a camera
Add a camera

Move the camera away from the object and text. Use the arrow widgets.

Placing the camera
Placing the camera

Step 8

Secondary-click on the camera to select it. Click on the camera button in the Properties editor. 

In the Lens panel, click on Orthographic mode. Press 0 in the number pad to get into camera view. 

Increase or decrease the Orthographic Scale such that the text is looking good in the frame. You can also move the camera with G key.

Camera settings
Camera settings

Step 9

Secondary-click on the text to select it. Go to 11th frame by press Shift-up arrow or by manually typing 11 in the current frame counter. 

Bring the mouse in the 3D view port and press I and click on Location. This will insert a keyframe.

Add keyframe to the text
Add keyframe to the text

Step 10

Go to frame number 21 either by pressing Shift-up arrow to move ahead ten frames or by manually typing 21 in the frame counter.

Add another keyframe
Add another keyframe

Move the Text object up so that it is completely above the plane. Press I and click select Location to insert another keyframe. 

Press Shift-back arrow to go to first frame. Press Alt-A to preview the animation.

Animate the text
Animate the text

Step 11

Click on the Layout button and select Animation.

Switch to Animation layout
Switch to Animation layout

In the Dope Sheet editor you can see the two keyframes. You can move them around to make the animation slow or fast. Secondary-click on the keyframe and then press G to move. 

Tweak the keyframes
Tweak the keyframes

Step 12

Click on the play button or press Alt-A to preview the animation.

Animation controls
Animation controls

Step 13

Drag the green bar in the timeline to get into frame between the two keyframes. Press F12 to render a still image. You'll notice that the plane is also being rendered which we want to avoid. Also the text behind the plane should not render.

Render any in-between frame
Render any in-between frame

Step 14

Secondary-click on the Text to select it. Press M and select second box to move the selected text to second layer.

Move text to second layer
Move text to second layer

Step 15

Secondary-click on the plane and then press M and then click on the first block to move it to the first layer.

Move plane to first layer
Move plane to first layer

Step 16

Hold Shift and then left click on the layer buttons to make them visible. You can also press the ~ key to make all layers visible in the 3D viewport.

Make layers visible in viewport
Make layers visible in viewport

Step 17

Click on the Render Layers button in the Properties editor. 

In the Layers panel, the are three categories of Layers. The first one is Scene layers. These are the layers visible in viewport. 

Second one is named Layer. The selected layers under these will be included in final render. 

The third group is for Mask layer. The objects of this layer will be used as masks. Click on the second layer button (in which we have the text objects) for render Layer

Select first layer for Mask. This will set the planes which are in layer one as masks.

Render layers panel
Render layers panel

Go to any frame in between the two keyframes and press F12 to render. You will see that the plane and the text behind it are not included in the final render.

Rendered preview
Rendered preview

Step 18

Similarly add a second text for subtitle. Add a plane covering it. Move both new object behind the first two. Move the new subtitle text further a bit.

Add another set of text and plane
Add another set of text and plane

Step 19

Animate the second text object going down. Go to frame 25. with the text selected, press I to insert a keyframe. Select Location.

Animate the second text object
Animate the second text object

Step 20

Press Shift-up arrow to move ahead ten frames. Move the text down. Press I and select Location to insert another keyframe.

Press Shift-left arrow to go to frame 1. Press Alt-A to preview the animation.

Add keyframe for second text
Add keyframe for second text

Step 21

In the animation layout and in the Dope Sheet, you can adjust and move the keyframe to set the timing. The further the keyframes are, the slower will be the animation.

Tweak keyframes in Dope sheet
Tweak keyframes in Dope sheet

Step 22

Secondary-click on the text to select it. Click on the material button in the properties editor and select the material already created for first title text.

Assign material to the second text
Assign material to the second text

Step 23

With the text selected, press M and move the object to second layer. Then right click on the second plane and press M and then click on the first layer to move it to first layer. 

All text is now in second layer and planes are in first (mask) layer.

Move text to second layer and plane to first
Move text to second layer and plane to first

Step 24

Go to frame 45 and press F12 to render the current frame. 

You'll notice that the second text is still not visible. This is because it is being masked out by the first plane. So you need it either animate the first plane or let it scale down automatically with the movement of the first title text.

Render an image to check
Render an image to check

Step 25

Press Shift-left arrow to go to first frame. Secondary-click on the first plane object to select it. 

Select the first plane
Select the first plane

Step 26

Press Tab to enter edit mode. Press B and drag select bottom two vertices.

Select bottom two vertices
Select bottom two vertices

Step 27

Press Ctrl-H to add Hook. Select Hook to New object. Press Tab to exit edit mode. Select the hook object and press G to move it around and check. 

You'll notice that the bottom two vertices are now attached to the Empty. Press Esc to reset the location.

Add Hook to bottom two vertices
Add Hook to bottom two vertices

Step 28

Hold Shift and then right click on the Empty and then the title text. 

Press Ctrl-P to parent the empty to text. Select Object in the pop up. Press Shift-left arrow to go to first frame. 

Press Alt-A to preview the animation. You will notice that the mask object now shrinks along with the movement of the title text.

Make the text parent of hook
Make the text parent of hook

Step 29

Go to frame 45 and press F12. Now you can see the subtitle text. In the next part of this tutorial, you will learn how to apply this animation onto a video.

Render an image
Render an image

Method Two: Using Boolean Modifier

Step 1

This method is best if you want to use a logo which is in .png format with transparent background. To import .png images as 3D object you need to activate Import Images as Planes add-on. 

Press Ctrl-Alt-U to bring out User Preference window. Click on Add-ons tab. In the search box type image and then activate Import Images as Planes. Close the window.

Activate Import Images as Planes Add-on
Activate Import Images as Planes Add-on

Step 2

In the 3D view, press 1 in numpad to get into front view. Press 5 in the numpad to toggle off perspective mode. Press Shift-A and click on Mesh>Images as Planes.

Add Images as Planes
Add Images as Planes

Step 3

Browse for the .png logo image. In the Import Options tick Use Alpha checkbox. 

In the Material Settings panel, tick the Shadeless checkbox. Press the Z Transparency button. finally click Import Image as planes button.

Import settings
Import settings

Step 4

Press Alt-Z to preview the image in the 3D viewport. Press Shift-A and add Mesh>Cube

Add a cube
Add a cube

Step 5

Press Z to switch to wireframe mode. With the cube selected, press Tab to enter edit mode. Press A to select all vertices and then S and then Z to scale the cube down the Z-axis.

Scale the cube such that it is just a little bit bigger than the logo plane. Check from the side view also.

Scale and plane the cube so that it covers the logo
Scale and plane the cube so that it covers the logo

Step 6

Press Tab to exit edit mode. With the cube selected, move the mouse in the outliner window. Press . (del) key in the number pad to see the selected object in outliner. 

Click on the camera button. This will disable the rendering of the cube. In the Properties editor, click on the cube button to see object properties. In the Display panel, select Wire in the Maximum Draw Type

This will display the cube in wireframe mode in the 3D viewport.

Cube display settings
Cube display settings

Step 7

Secondary-click on the logo plane to select it. Click on the modifiers button in the properties editor. Click Add Modifier button and select Boolean.

Add Boolean modifier to logo plane
Add Boolean modifier to logo plane

Step 8

In the Operation select Intersect and for Object select the Cube which is covering the logo.

Boolean modifier settings
Boolean modifier settings

Press G and move the mouse around. You will see that the plane is only visible inside the cube. Secondary-click to cancel the move.

Move the plane around to see effect
Move the plane around to see effect

Step 9

Press Shift-A and add a Camera. In the camera properties click on the Orthographic button. Press Ins key in the number pad to get into camera view. 

With the camera selected, press G and move it to adjust the frame and arrangement. Move the Scale slider to fit the logo and title in the frame.

Add camera
Add camera

Step 10

Go to frame 11. Type the number manually on the frame counter or press Shift-up arrow to move ahead 10 frames.

Secondary-click on the logo plane to select it. Use the arrow widget to move to away outside the cube. Press I and select location to insert a keyframe.

Animate the logo coming from outside to inside the cube
Animate the logo coming from outside to inside the cube

Step 11

Drag the green timeline to frame 31. With the logo selected, move it inside the centre of the cube so that you can see it. Press I to insert keyframe. Select Location in the pop up.

insert keyframe for logo
insert keyframe for logo

Step 12

Press Shift-left arrow to go to first frame. Press Alt-A to preview the animation. Press Esc key to stop. 

Drag the timeline and go to any in between frame. Press F12 to see rendered preview.

Preview the animation and render any in between image
Preview the animation and render any in between image

Step 13

I am going to add another transparent .png with title text. Press Shift-A and add Mesh>Images as Planes

Add title image as plane
Add title image as plane

Browse for the title image which must be .png with transparent background. 

In the Import Options tick the Use Alpha checkbox. In Material Settings , tick Shadeless checkbox and click on the Z Transparency button. Finally click Import Images as Planes button.

Import settings
Import settings

Step 14

Press Alt-Z to see textured preview. Select the title and move it beside the logo and just outside the cube.

Place the title next to logo
Place the title next to logo

Step 15

With the title selected, secondary-click on it to select, click on the modifiers button in the properties editor. Click on the Add Modifier button and select Boolean.

Add Boolean modifier to the text plane
Add Boolean modifier to the text plane

Select Difference for Operation and Cube for Object. This is the same cube which is covering the logo. You dont have to create another cube covering the title.

Boolean modifier settings
Boolean modifier settings

Press Z to switch to wireframe mode. Secondary-click on the title object and use the arrow widget to move and see the effect. 

The title object will not be visible if it is inserted in the cube.

Move the plane and see the effect
Move the plane and see the effect

Step 16

If the cube is small you can increase its width. Secondary-click on the cube to select it.

Press Tab to enter edit mode. Press B key and drag select the vertices on side. Use the arrow widget to move them. Press Tab again to exit edit mode.

Make the cube bigger
Make the cube bigger

Step 17

Now animate the title. Go the frame 29 by manually entering the frame number in the frame counter to by dragging the green marker in the timeline. 

With the title selected and inside the cube I will add the first keyframe. Press I to bring out the keyframe menu and select location.

Animate the title plane
Animate the title plane

Step 18

Move ahead 20 frames by dragging the timeline or by manually entering the frame number in the counter. 

Move the title with arrow widget to the right of the cube so that it is visible. Press I and then select Location to insert another keyframe. Press Alt-A to preview the animation.

Add keyframe to the plane
Add keyframe to the plane

Step 19

Press Ins key in the numpad to get into camera view. Right click on the camera to select it. Press G and move the camera to adjust the frame such that the title and logo are in center.

Move the Scale slider to fit the logo and title in the frame. You can adjust the keyframes in the Dope Sheet editor.

Camera settings
Camera settings

In the Next Tutorial

In the next part of this tutorial series, I'll show you another method that can be used for 3D meshes as well as text objects. I'll also show you how to apply these animation onto a video.


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