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10 After Effects Plugins for UI Designers

Article by Awwwards -

After Effects has become one of the most useful tools for designing and prototyping animations for interactive projects. But AE is a complex tool with thousands of features to learn. Fortunately there are many plugins, tools and utilities to speed up your workflow, handle time consuming tasks, or deal with complex animation curves.

The most important thing for a UI designer working with After Effects to design UI motion, is to find tools to help transform AE animations into clean CSS or JS animations, so we’ve decided to share a very useful chapter about this topic from Louis Ansa’s fantastic course: Design meaningful experiences through an animation system.

Con captionVideo Photographs from Wadi Rum and Cape Floral Region page.

AE Plugins and Tools

Some of the plugins we’ve selected are free, whilst the others are available at an accessible price. All of them will help you deal with complex nested compositions, easing curves, managing anchor points easily, ordering layers or translating your animations parameters into CSS or JS - ready for the developer team.

  • Animation Composer

    Animation Composer is an extensive library of motion presets, precomps, transitions and sound effects. There is a preview panel where you can choose many different animations, and you can simply drag and drop the preset to your layer. Try different animations, customize properties like scale, opacity, rotation, time and other features. This plugin really speeds up your work especially when it comes to quickly prototyping UI animations.

    Animation Composer
  • Swiss Knife - AE Plugin

    Swiss Knife is a super handy plugin with loads of timesaving tools and features like reordering layers, making quick yet decent animations with multiple elements, parallax effects with 2D and 3D layers, extruding, offset animations, slideshows, interdependent animations, and much more.

    Swiss Knife - AE Plugin