How to Create a Faux 3D Spin Effect in After Effects

After Effects 09/10/2019 3 min read

Hey everyone, this is Owen with Motion Array and in this tutorial I’ll be showing you how to make a 2D object look like it’s a spinning 3D object. In this particular case, we’re going to make this beer can spin. Alright let’s get started.

So I’m starting out with a composition that has a blank can in it. I’ve already got the can designed over in this other composition I’ve named “Beer Label”. When designing your own label or whatever it is you are trying to rotate it’s important to make sure that it loops. Otherwise you’ll have a weird seam when you rotate past the end of the design. This one is set up to loop so we’re good to go.

Back in my main comp I’ll bring in the beer label and line it up to the can. Then with the label selected go to Effect > Stylize > CC Repetile. Repetile will tile your layer left, right, up, or down. It’s super handy for something like this. I’m going to expand it to right a good bit so I have room to let the label slide. Then I’ll duplicate the can layer and use just the center rectangle portion of the can as an alpha matte for the label.

Create two new null objects with Layer > New > Null Object. Put one at the bottom left corner of the can and the other at the bottom right corner of the can. Call the one at the bottom right Can Control 1 and the one at the bottom left Can Control 2. Parent Can Control 1 to Can Control 2. Parent all other layers (besides the background) to Can Control 1.

Time to animate! At frame 30 set a keyframe for position and rotation on Can Control 1. Set the rotation to -5 degrees. Then move the playhead to frame 0 and set the rotation to 0 degrees and move the position so that the can is all the way off the screen to the right. At frame 33 set the rotation to 0 degrees. Highlight both keyframes at frame 30 and easy ease them. With both keyframes still highlighted right click on one of the keyframes and go to Keyframe Velocity. In the dialog box adjust the incoming influence to 100% and the outgoing influence to 75%. Now pull up the rotation of Can Control 2 and set a keyframe at frame 33 for 0 degrees. At frame 36 set a keyframe for 3 degrees and easy ease the keyframe. At frame 39 set a keyframe for 0 degrees. Back on Can Control 1 set a rotation keyframe for 0 degrees at frame 39. At frame 41 set a keyframe with a value of -1 degrees and easy ease that keyframe. At frame 43 set a keyframe for 0 degrees. Keyframing the rotation this way will let the can rotate from two different pivot points.

Bring up the position for the beer label layer and set a keyframe at frame 0 where the label’s left edge is aligned to the left edge of the can. At frame 30 change the x position value so that the label has slid past it’s looping point. This will give it a nice amount of “spin”. Easy ease the position keyframe at frame 30 and set it’s incoming influence to 100%. That will wrap up the animation of the can!

Well, that concludes this tutorial. Give us a thumbs up and if you’d like to see more tutorials please go ahead and subscribe because we’re making new ones all the time.  I hope you guys found it helpful.  If you did, we’ve got lots of other Premiere Pro tutorials, After Effects tutorials and filmmaking tutorials!