With Aurora Sky, you can create realistic,
three-dimensional skies. More powerful and flexible than simple
fractal clouds, Aurora Sky includes a wide array of special effects.
Taking advantage of the new 3D capabilities of After Effects, Aurora
Sky lets you use texture and cloud shaping maps to create an infinite
variety of skyscapes.
Most importantly for users with a lot of rendering power, Aurora
Sky gives you the option of truly volumetric 3D clouds that let
you create clouds like smoke and fog-like effects.
The 3D Camera Tools
Camera flies through
3D space and 3D clouds
(mov, 1.0 Mb)
Aurora Sky works in 3D space, both its own and After Effect’s.
The built-in camera can fly throughout the vast world within the
plug-in, using all the standard axis controls.
For After Effects users, Aurora Sky is built to utilize AE’s
3D camera (5.0 and later). As you move or turn the After Effects
camera, Aurora will update its environment as a seamless part of
the scene. This integration makes it simple to composite other 3D
objects over the skyscape created with the plug-in.
Texture map applied to the clouds
(avi, 720 kb)
You can project images or logos onto the regular cloud surface
using texture maps. The texture maps respect cloud opacity and shading,
and the clouds can be used as a displacement map, displacing the
image as the clouds move.
This opens up the door to many effects, from simply projecting a
logo to covering the sky in swirls of color using a QuickTime movie.
Light beams effect
(avi, 588 kb)
Animated clouds behind a still image
(avi, 175 kb)
The normal cloud layer in Aurora Sky is a fractal-based flat layer
of clouds. This works excellently in many scenes, but for actually
flying through 'cloudy matter,' users need more powerful volumetric
clouds. That's where the 3D Clouds come in handy.
Using a 'U' shaped bezier path,
we can fly through the 3D cloud
(mov, 621 kb)
The 3D Clouds in Aurora Sky are actually 3D objects with mass and
substance. You can adjust properties like opacity and number of
spheres, and navigate through them using Aurora’s or AE’s
camera. This also allows special effects such as fog or smoke layered
over the regular clouds.
Using a 'U' shaped Bezier path, we can fly through the 3D cloud.
This functionality creates cloud effects that seem to envelope the
camera as it passes through them. An especially cool feature is
that Bezier paths can be used to apply custom shapes to the 3D Clouds.
Cloud shaping and bumping effect
(avi, 893 kb)
You can also use grayscale maps to control the shape of the clouds.
Words or shapes can emerge from cloudy matter, and - heck - there's
always sky writing.
Aurora has plenty of controls for placing and arranging the maps.
It's a feature that's as flexible as the maps you can come up with.
Turn on the clouds
3D Clouds are turned off by default because they are a render hit.
You'll need to switch them on in either the Options box in After
Effects' Effects window, or as a select box in FCP's Effect window.