After Effects Tutorial – Build a Car Racing scene from Photographs Part 1

April 15, 2009

In this AE tutorial I go though the process of making a stylized scene of cars racing down a road towards camera.

UPDATE: Download the PSD Here

Check out Part 2 of this tutorial

Tutorial Focus:  ,

  • Awesome tut, can’t wait to see part 2! Thanks for all of the time you put into this site and your tuts- truly invaluable!

  • great tutorial nick, you da man!
    here’s my pb&j for this week.

  • amazing! =) like all you post!

  • Where are the project files?

  • I’m diggin this tutorial Nick. I would however love to see how you added all of the text, effects, and background of your original Dodge comp. I’ve always wanted to know how to create all of the moving background elements that you see in these type of spots. As someone who creates promotion spots, this would be beneficial to me. Ford has been doing that a lot lately in their ads.

  • I like the concept: how to make a big time commercial on a shoestring.
    In this economy, that’s a good thing to know.

    Very cool tut with lots of useful tips.
    You got my attention.

    James Wicks
    Zfx Studios

  • Great tutorial Nick! Could you explain in more detail the difference between working on 8, 16, 32 bits comps/projects?

    Also, you said something at the beginning about your client wanting to insert a person inside the car, what happened with that? , he he.

  • Hey nick 🙂
    Good tutorial, lots of ideas as always, thanks !

  • I can definitely do a follow up to this tut to show the logo burst. I will definitely have a 32bit cast up too A3. As for the person in the car, not sure about that one… Did I really say that? Crazy… hehehe.

  • Thanks Nick for the 32 bit upcoming cast!

    And yeah, I think you said something about the client wanting to insert a person inside the car… or maybe I heard wrong hehe

  • I’ve been watching your blog since day one. Ok, maybe day two 😉 Awesome, just awesome Nick. Especially this tut is a very helpful inspiration for time saving problems. Thanks for your time, inspiration and your highlevel stuff. Keep on going 😉

  • Great Job, man. While constructing the car (rotating it in 3d space, scaling and aligning it) you mention you would use a trick…then thought better of it or that you didn’t need it. What trick was that specifically? could you elaborate?

  • Please do a follow up tutorial with the 3d elements. Also, a tut on the dust and particles would be nice. Something that utilizes AE’s built in particle plugins.

  • after the whole tutorial, the door at nick’s back suddenly opened. just freaked me out. haha

    anyway, great tutorial again, nick!

  • Just wanted to mention, when you bring in an object that is so big, you slow down AE by that much. Sometimes, it is best to scale them down in PS before bringing the elements in. Just a thought.

  • thanks for sharing this ?:-3

  • Learning about up coming models , upcoming technologies in cars and also learning about different tools to design my own concept cars or animations; is my hobby. A nice gift for me, thanks !!!

  • “You get the rotate tool by hitting W….for the Wotate tool…” EPIC!

  • hi.. nice tutorial. but 1 thing is missed for my eyes.. Need to show the Reflexion of the object while we cross on the car! hope you got my point!

  • Hi… I totally agree with everyone here that this tut is awesome! The racing scene is spot on. I tried to draw inspiration from this and decided to design an animated logo for my mini project with these effects for a website but it turned out all wrong. Haha. I think I used the wrong subject matter. Finally, I decided to use the professional services of an online logo design site instead ( and got the design I wanted at an affordable price and fast too, within 24 hours. I did provide this link for reference and inspiration to my designer as I wanted the look of your design. Thanks for posting this, by the way!

  • Hi Nick, great Tutorial.
    I can’t find “particle” plugin in AE, i’m using the CS4.

  • The excellent lesson, has learnt a lot of new, thanks!

  • Thanks for camera tip @21:50, I always wanted free camera and didn’t know how to get it in After Effects.

  • Hey I really liked your turtorial but I have slight problem with the road apart because mine goes really slow and I made those offset turbulance thing but the road moves to the rigth and not backwards like your,, not even the shift+ Y click didn’t work at all :C What have I done wrong .. Please help :3

  • Check out this St Paddys Promo: seo vps

  • Would really help if the videos were actually there.

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