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Our top 5 tips for motion graphics design

Want to learn how to elevate your motion graphics? We’re giving you the low-down on how to take your animations to the next level. With these tips and techniques, you’ll be creating some awesome motion graphics in HitFilm in no time!

Film Riot blog post feature image

How Film Riot gets perfect 3D tracking using CamTrackAR

In Film Riot’s latest YouTube video, Ryan Connolly gives us the low-down on his experiences with our free iOS app CamTrackAR. From tracking a scene to creating a full-fledged project, Ryan walks us through how he used the app to ease the process of adding a 3D drone to a tracked scene. Read on to find out more about the neat things Film Riot has created using the app.

How to elevate your virtual meeting recordings

Learn how to take your virtual meetings to the next level with high quality visuals, fine-tuned audio and a flawless edit. Whether you’re using Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, Discord, Skype, or any other video calling platform, we’ve got you covered!

WandaVision-inspired reality transition glitch effect

How to create a WandaVision Reality Glitch Transition

Learn how to create a reality-warping transition, perfect for switching between scenes or tearing a hole in reality, as seen in WandaVision, using mattes, distortions, and glows!

This tutorial will be using HitFilm Pro but you can follow along in HitFilm Express if you have the VFX: Distortion pack, VFX: Retro 2 pack, and the VFX: Neon Lights pack.

blog-header-our-top-5-tips-for-motion-graphics-design-thumbnail-promo

Our top 5 tips for motion graphics design

Want to learn how to elevate your motion graphics? We're giving you the low-down on how to take your animations to the next level. With these tips and techniques, you'll be creating some awesome motion graphics in HitFilm in no time!

Our resident MoGraph expert Javert Valbarr knows a thing or two about motion design. Today he’s sharing his top 5 tips for motion graphics, and they can all be done with free motion graphics software on the market. Whether you’re creating custom graphics for your YouTube channel, lower thirds, or a stylized endplate, these tips will help you get a professional finish!


Learn how to use the Set Matte effect

Example of Set Matte effect
Example of Set Matte effect

The Set Matte effect is a very simple yet powerful tool for motion designers. In both HitFilm Pro and Express, this effect allows you to use the data from one layer and apply it to another. 

The Set Matte effect has many use cases, such as allowing you to animate text sliding out from nowhere to even allowing you to put one design in another (such as footage into a piece of text) without having to draw numerous complicated masks.

A use case for the Set Matte effect in motion graphics
A use case for the Set Matte effect in motion graphics

Here are the steps to achieve the video within text effect :

  1. Apply the Set Matte effect to the layer you want to change (which in this case is the Footage layer)
  2. In the Sette Matte drop-down, set the Source Layer to the layer with the data you wish to use (the Text layer)
  3. Set the Matte Source to Alpha and the blend mode to Subtract
  4. Tick Invert

Add a ‘bounce’ to your animations

One of our favorite motion graphics tips is to add a ‘bounce’ to your animations, making them seem less abrupt and appear to move more naturally. This applies to whether you have animated the Position, Rotation, or Scale of your element.

How to keyframe element movement to achieve bounce effect
How to keyframe element movement to achieve bounce effect

To achieve the ‘bounce’ effect you need to:

  1. Animate your motion as normal
  2.  2 or 3 frames before the last keyframe, add a keyframe to slightly overshoot the Position/ Rotation/ Scale of the last keyframe 

 The result is an animation that goes past where you intended initially but quickly bounces back, giving it a smoother, more natural appearance


Learn the 4 different keyframe types 

HitFilm has 4 different types of keyframes: 

  • Linear – is the default type that allows an element to go from point A to B without smoothing.
  • Constant – allows an element to snap from one position to the other. 
  • Smooth /Smooth In/Smooth Out – adds a small curve to the animation, so it doesn’t stop suddenly.
  • Manual Bezier – allows you to adjust the curve of the Value Graph.

Choose the right fonts for your designs

effect of using a different font
effect of using a different font

A font makes a huge difference in the overall look, feel, and professionalism of a title. You want your fonts to work harmoniously for their intended purposes. Dafont is an excellent source for finding new fonts.


Level up on your design details 

Motion graphic references
Motion graphic references

Ideally, you want your motion designs to appear as one cohesive piece; you do not want your audience to be able to pick apart the elements of your design. To achieve this, you should aim to have more detailed designs with multiple things happening simultaneously to look like one cohesive unit. This skill comes with practice. If you’re struggling with finding ideas for your motion graphics, look at references on stock websites like CreatorVault for inspiration.


Free motion graphics software

HitFilm Express: free motion graphics software

HitFilm Express is a free motion graphics and video editing software that is favored by motion graphics artists, motion designers, and YouTubers looking to create their own visuals. Join over 4.8 million creatives today who are using HitFilm to add production value to their projects. Take it for a test drive.


Learn motion graphics for free with FXhome

We release new videos every week over on the FXhome YouTube channel to teach you everything from motion graphics to video editing, to visual effects and film theory. Check out the HitFilm Basics masterclass to get started. It even includes a dedicated intro to motion graphics for all you budding motion designers out there!

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Hannah Odebode

Hannah Odebode

Hey! I'm Hannah, the intern! I'm the person that gets to answer all of your questions and respond to your lovely comments on our socials. I have a great love for all things thriller/horror-film related and my favorite film as of yet is Parasite. 😊