Great Looking Explosions In Adobe After Effects

User avatarAugust 27, 2012 by Surfaced Studio

In my latest video, I am going to show you how to blow stuff up with VFX explosions! Learn how to make your explosions stand out with just a few extra elements like flying debris, shockwaves and camera shake

Base Explosion Footage

To create a convincing explosion you will first need to record your base footage. Simply record your clip as normal and at the time of explosion, have your actors either jump away as best as they can or simply stand still. We will cover them up anyway

Next, film some footage of your actors actively jumping away from the explosion. Try to get them to start the jump with the same position, direction and posture they had in your base footage as we will stitch those clips together. Feel free to take a run up to the jump, that's the part we'll cut away

Place the jump footage on top of your base footage and align the jump so it cuts in at the correct time when the explosion hits and it looks like your actor is being flung away from a standing position by the power of the explosion!
If you see any twitching during the transition, you can apply masks around your actors and feather them out a bit to make the cut less obvious. I've cut out the bottom left of my jump footage so there is no twitching in the foliage of the trees.
One thing to make your explosion look more realistic is to create a few elements that will be flung out away from the centre of the detonation. Let's look at how we can do that!
User avatar
Gordon
5 Years Ago
June 7, 2013 @ 10:46 pm

You, my man from down under, are second only to Andrew Kramer! Keep up the good work.

User avatar
5 Years Ago
June 7, 2013 @ 16:35 am

Thank you very much I feel very honoured! I'm a huge fan of Andrew Kramer and the great work they are doing at videocopilot.net

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Manjeet joshi
5 Years Ago
August 9, 2013 @ 5:06 pm

nice tut ...keep it up ur good tuts...now i m daily member of ur site after videocopilet

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Surfaced Studio@ Manjeet joshi
5 Years Ago
August 10, 2013 @ 7:50 pm

Thanks man! That means a lot, I have a lot of respect for videocopilot

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you thank
4 Years Ago
December 28, 2014 @ 23:48 am

thank you very much for the video that you had been posted... It helps a lot... =D

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Surfaced Studio@ you thank
4 Years Ago
December 31, 2014 @ 3:48 pm

Thank you very much! Glad to hear you found the tutorial helpful!

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I am passionate about providing high quality VFX & Film Making Edutainment online. Check out my training courses on Udemy
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