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How To Make a Candy Cane Text Animation In Cinema 4D 120 Comments

Ho Ho Ho! In this special holiday tutorial, I show you how to make a delicious Candy Cane animation using Illustrator and Cinema 4D. I show you how to animate the type with Sweep Nurbs and texture it with a candy cane texture. Then, I show you how to light the scene for the final render.

Thanks again for watching and making this such a great year for Greyscalegorilla and me. You make this site awesome. Happy Holidays!


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  1. i like your work and your tutorials. u do a great job. isn’t it funny to see yout work all over the world wide web by peaple doing your tutorials?

    maybee u like my work, too?

    we produced an independent dark Sci-Fi End-of-Days satire movie. with a lot of CG and AE shots.

    if u want chack it out and watch the trailer on
    or on youtube:

    and if u like become a fan on facebook:

  2. Alejandro

    Excellent tutorial. I follow the blog for a long and really is great everything you do. Sorry for my English. Keep it up.
    One question, I want to achieve something like this think you could make a toturial how to do it?

    • No it’s not done in realflow. It’s shootet with a high-speed camera and an air baloon that had the shape of the bottle.
      1000 frames per second or so πŸ˜‰

    • athime de crecy

      i think the vodka itself is easy to make with a bottle shape and a texture with displacement based on animate noise.
      for the bottle, the explosion FX deformor (is it english ?) !

      good luck, and happy holidays

    • Actually, I think you could use a Metaball deformers and some cloner objects to create this. Since it’s stationary, you could get away without using RealFlow, I think…would be more work though.

  3. Cool stuff! Where do you get the music for your animations? Do you make all of them?

    I feel like a good soundtrack really adds a lot to an animation, and would love to know your approach!


  4. Very good and thanks for diving into Illustrator, to show how to export the path to C4D, and then how to “manipulate” the whole deal.
    That rotation really was something sweet!
    Merry Christmas and happy holidays πŸ˜€

  5. Well, well, what a coincidence…I dealt with something similar in Sunday night and Monday morning. Not candy cane style but similar in using handwritten text (with freeehand spline using mouse) with sweep NURBS (controlled by expresso~user data).

  6. james

    What fonts do you use?? It seems you use the same ones over and over.

  7. Hey Nick,
    thanks a lot for your amazing Tutorials. I wish you and all the American people a Merry Christmas and a good start in the year 2011. Hope the Tutorials will go on in the future.
    Many Greetings from Germany

    Yours Nico

  8. Sebastian

    Happy Holidays Nick! Thanks for an awesome year! You make cool shit man.

    Thanks again,


  9. Soul Walker

    Thanks for yet another awesome tutorial, I will try this too, Nick.
    Happy Holidays and a happy and prosperous New Year to everyone!

  10. Matty2x4

    Awesome comment. πŸ˜€
    Nice work Nick.
    And a happy holiday to you too!

    • asymptoteell

      Even if the candy canner can can cans of candy can the candy can canner can cans of candy while doing the can can with a candy cane?

  11. Hey Nick,
    Is there a way in C4D to see 4:3 action/title safe guides inside the 1920×1080 environment?

    I work in television producing commercials, and use C4D whenever possible. The spots are full 1080HD (1920×1080) with 4:3 center cut graphics.

    Any suggestions on how to view 4:3 guides in a 16:9 C4D project?


    • DavyMenge

      One option is to make a square spline 4:3 and attach it to your camera and give it a color and set it to always visible. only problem is if you adjust focal length.

      I think I saw a rig once for this but can’t find it.


  12. Zachary O'Connor

    Happy holidays to you as well Nick! It’s a pity we don’t have snow in Australia, I love it!

  13. Hi Nick,
    Thanks for those little tweaks with C4D and wish you merry christmas and a happy new year !
    It was a pleasure to learn some of your techniques and gave me inspirations.
    I hope more intensive trainings with your knowledge, especially on motion design, for 2011…

  14. Roxxii

    BEAUTIFULLLLLLLLL i love u gorilla and merry xmas xxx

  15. DavyMenge

    Very nice tutorial again πŸ™‚

    The thickness after adding the caps can be solved by checking “Constrain” on the caps tab. I saw you spacing out letters in a previous tutorial because they got too thick. You probably already know this but I thought I’d just point it out for other people to read aswell.

    Happy Holidays from Holland!

  16. Roxxii

    love the tutorial. wish that font was free though πŸ™

    • There are some clones available on dafont.
      Check out Cicle, Hit the road and Florencesans.

    • Roxxii

      sorry to be a pain but u wudnt have an alternative for the hand written font would u? xo

    • Roxxii

      hehe like u gorilla i dont have the bestest hand writing :p xo

    • I don’t have great handwriting either, but you can use your handwriting as a base….then delete some of the extra points, and make it look pretty nice by editing the tangents afterward.

  17. Nick you are great!!!!!
    I mean really, I would never be able to thank you enough for the things you have taught us.
    Tut is awesome like always. Thanks again.

  18. OmarGon

    Merry Christmas for all of you, guys.

    After that, I want to ask this: How come when i put the path and the circle in the SweepNurbs it keeps the same, not like the tutorial. I dont see volume. :S Any help?

    • Lorenzo Pozza

      oh, it’s “feliz natal”, the same as “happy cristmas”, but in portuguese, because i’m brazilian (:

  19. Victor Gonzalez

    Hey Nick!

    I’m trying to import my scene into After Effects, but the black background keeps appearing. How can I just disable it? I’m not really an expert on this πŸ˜›

  20. rodolfo

    Excelent!! GreyscaleGorilla You are the best MotionGrapher. This Web is very important to many artist who want to learn with bigger like you. Im filmaker from argentina and never see anybody in web more enthusiast

    i hope learn more with you

    merry christmas

  21. Hey gorilla!
    i’ve got a question for you. Im really into 3d and motion graphics and all that stuff. Im 16 years old and ive followed all your tutorials from the beginning but when i look at videos like triangle from onur senturk. They are just awesome and when i try to make a video like that 2 things could happen. 1 i copy alot. 2. It becomes really really bad. i never seem to create something awesome like those vids. Any tips?

  22. CGR-tist

    Another great tut.
    Tank’s for this year tuts.
    We need you lessons next year.
    Ha a great holidays.

  23. Hey Nick and Merry Christmas –

    I just wanted to say thanks for all the effort you put into these videos and although I’m going to hop program since cinema 4d doesn’t have the tools I need as opposed to other software I still appreciate as much as anyone your videos. I wish you luck in the future and I hope you have a twin that has a website on the software I choose.

  24. Michael Tosetto

    Yo Nick, great work. Long time AE user but new to C4D. This was a great tute for me to get an overview of a small project from beginning to end.

    Really dig your work and your blog. Been hanging out here more than VideoCoPilot of late.

    Have a great Chrissy mate.

    Cheers from down under. Mike πŸ™‚

    • thx!

      how about a tut on exporting a product shots with shadows intact for photoshop. I have been playing around with the multipass exporting options but I haven’t gotten anything I am happy with.

  25. Tomaz Mrevlje

    Hey Nick, great tutorial as always. I came across a problem tho, thought you might help. When adding End Rotation to my Sweep NURBS what happens is that the the text starts braking up at the begining and the end, kinda twists and starts braking right after. Even tho the texture isn’t rotated as much as i’d want it to be. Any ideas?

    Thanks and Happy Holidays to you all!

  26. Daoud

    Hi i just have one question im like new to c4d and i mostly know all the stuff except for modelling or making u know like cartoons can u tell me a site where ican learn from or youtube vid plz it would be really help full

  27. Hi Nick…
    instead of turning off the layer with the mouth to see the path you can click on the “q” button on the keyboard… makes it easier .

    have a good one.


  28. james hartwell

    i wasn’t sure how to email ha so i thought i would leave a comment. i just wanted to say that i love your tutorials, and they have been a huge help. My animation teacher and i are confused on the fringe intro exploding text thing. i would really appreciate some pointers or maybe a tutorial. thanks your the best man

  29. Jason C

    Hi, don’t be angry. i do not agree what most people say here. i think most of your tutorials are very lame, cause they go in circles – no growth. What about bringing more tuts from pro’s like ‘the monkey’ or so? anyway, thanks for your good work. regards, jason

  30. Do you hear tutorial voiceovers inside your head when working on projects in Cinema/Ae and stuff?


  31. Mikkel

    The music you used for the happy holidays card – what is that? thanks for the inspiration …

  32. David

    Hey Guys! This has nothing to do with the video but I just made this up and wanted you guys to tell me something about it. I’m an architecture student and this is my first video-rendered with cinema 4d… What do you think.
    * I’d like to use a postproduction program but I haven’t yet..


  33. hii nick,,
    I am big fan of urs, i learnt so much from u. I wanna know how to extrude polygon on a certain angle. c4d always extrude at 90 degree form the polygon… please reply..

    Your student,
    Pritam Singh

  34. Ivanex

    Simplemente Beauty…..e innteresante
    como siempre se agradece por el aporte

  35. Jodie Duarte

    I need help!! Really want to do this tutorial for a project I’m working on about cakes!! I get to the bit where I import the path into C4D which seems to work fine..then when I add a sweep nurb nothing happens to my path…your one turns to black..mine stays completely the same. Then I add a circle and make it smaller like you do which is all fine. But then when I put the circle and the path into the sweep nurb folder I get a massive round 3d disc shape!! Please help!! Really want to do this!

    Thanks for any help,

    Jodie. :o)

    • Jodie Duarte

      I made the circle the same size as yours and the order is all the same as well πŸ™ Would you know why the sweep nurbs doesn’t even make the path do anything??

      • You might’ve done what I did – which is make more than one path (my first and last name). The sweep nurb should only sweep across one path, and it can’t be inside a null object. If you have more than one path when you import, pull the path out, sweep it, and duplicate the whole setup for your second path.

  36. Jerote

    Great tutorial! I don’t know if anybody has mentioned it before, but a nice fast shortcut for turning NURBS (sweep, extrude, hyper, etc) on/off is the letter Q… so you can work on the spline and “Q” it on and off faster than clicking on it πŸ™‚

  37. stevieg

    Excellent again Nick and Chris, Thanks for all the knowledge you share,
    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

  38. pedro bird

    aaah! many thanks for this tutorial! for years i have hated and despised the pen tool. you have made me a more peaceful person. Thankyou & Happy Holidays!

  39. Joao Ferrari

    I’d like to know how you did the Motion Blur. Is it Cinema or After Effects?

  40. Michaelia Stephens

    Hello! First, I love this tutorial and keep up the good work. My question is that when I import the illustrator path into cinema 4d there is a box surrounding it and its not letting me alter the path with the sweep nurbs or circle. Why is that? Here is a screenshot []. Please help, I really want to make my own version of this tutorial!

  41. Letha

    Hmm it appears like your website ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to everything. Do you have any helpful hints for newbie blog writers? I’d really appreciate it.


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Comment Rules

This is a friendly community. Please treat everyone with respect. We don't all have to agree, but we do have to be nice. Criticism is fine, but rude comments and name calling will be deleted. Use your real name and don't be spammy. Thanks for adding to the conversation.