Better Camera Animation in After Effects

Here’s a quick tutorial showing a few tips to better work with cameras in After Effects. The goal is to create a simple camera rig and use it to animate your camera in a much faster, easier and flexible way. This is just a starting point to some more advanced camera animation techniques, but it’s still pretty effective for most common situations. You can download the AE project file here:

There are many ways to animate a camera in AE, so don’t be afraid to experiment on your own and build a camera rig that’s tailored to your specific needs. Also, check out the Sure Target 2 plugin and tutorial from Video Copilot and the “Malty: Simple Camera Rig” script from Maltaannon on, might come in handy for more advanced stuff!

Note that the Yoda illustration used in this tutorial is based on an illustration from Anna Johnstone


  1. Shalom Ormsby · July 10, 2013 Reply

    Thanks for this super-helpful tutorial and for the free camera rig. Much appreciated! I added this to my “After Effects Tutorials” board: I look forward to studying more of your tutorials.

  2. Shalom Ormsby · July 10, 2013 Reply

    I’ve taken your suggestion, and have set up your camera controller as my default new project template, with your little “Cam Ctrl” locked in my Effect Controls panel. So helpful! You’ve saved me tons of time and have made the process of using AE’s 3D cam much more intuitive and user-friendly. Thanks again!

  3. Tommy · July 26, 2013 Reply

    Thank you for this tutorial. I have a question: why we need to create 3 different Nulls additionaly to one main Null object “Ctrl Cam”?
    Why we can’t just create one “Ctrl Cam” Null, add 3 Sliders to it, and parent all 3 his axis to this sliders, like: value + [Slider1,Slider2,Slider3]?
    So, one Null object will realize Camera rig with 3 independent axis control. Just parent camera to it.

  4. Emerson Cordeiro Junior · November 22, 2013 Reply

    Hello, Man.
    Watching your video, I realized that you could solve the problem by just adding this expression in the point of interest: transform.position;
    and separate the dimensions of heading =)

  5. most interesting · May 18, 2015 Reply

    i have been looking everywhere for a good lesson and explaination for the use of the camera and null object .

    this is the best i have found .

    big time thank you.

    better than all them books and the youtube folly shows..

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