8 Super Handy After Effects Plugins for Motion Designers

All artists sometimes need helping hands in order to save time and efficiency in their workflow. So in order to help out, here is my list of 8 super handy plugins I use for After Effects!

1. Textify

Developed by motion design artist GeekyBrackets. Textify is my favorite tool for when I need to make a quick text animation. Think of it like Range Selectors turned up to 11.

It’s so easy that I pretty much use it anytime I’m animating text. It even has a “Randomize” button that lets you create a fancy looking animation in a pinch.

2. Motion 2

I know this plugin is mentioned in pretty much every article ever. But it’s one of those plugins that I can’t go without mentioning. Developed by popular educator Mt. Mograph, Motion 2 is an essential toolbox for motion designers.

Instead of fumbling around the Graph Editor. You can quickly change the velocity and easing of keyframes with just three sliders. Allowing you to fine-tune a keyframe animation in a pinch.

It has a bunch of useful tools like an anchor point tool, which lets you quickly center the anchor point to any corner in the object. It also has a naming tool that gives you the ability to quickly rename an assortment of layers.

There’s a new version called “Motion 3” that came out recently that adds even more features and a brand new look!

3. Rift

Rift is a godsend for when you need to sequence a bunch of layers at certain intervals with one click.

It lets you do things like choosing how many frames or seconds to shift the layers. It gives you the option to shift the whole layer or just the keyframes. You can even randomize how the layers are sequenced!

This plugin is very powerful and it saves a lot of time compared to shifting layers by hand.

4. EaseCopy

Don’t you wish you can just copy the ease of keyframes without messing up the property values? Well, now you can with EaseCopy!

This is a very simple plugin that lets you copy ease curves without having to go to the graph editor and re-do everything. It even adjusts the curve depending on how far apart your keyframes are. Very simple but very useful.

5. FX Console

FX Console is a plugin I can’t imagine working without.

It’s pretty much like a macOS Spotlight search but for After Effects. It’s a little search bar pop-up that lets you quickly lookup effects and presets and quickly applies it to the selected layer by hitting the enter key.

You can set shorthand keywords for your favorite effects. Let’s just say for example I want to quickly apply a Brightness & Contrast effect. I can make a shortcut with the label “bright” and assign it with that effect. Then when I search up “bright” it will quickly apply Brightness & Contrast to the selected layer. Isn’t that neat?

It also comes with a cool screenshot feature that lets you quickly save them as a .PNG. It also lets you drag and drop screenshots into the project without any long import times.

This plugin is awesome. I hope Adobe officially implements a feature like this one day.

6. ButtCapper

This a super simple plugin that lets you change the line cap with 1 click. No more twirling dropdown menus!

It’s just three buttons that let you change a line cap to butt cap, round cap, or projecting cap. If you Alt-click them you can also change the line join type too.

7. True Comp Duplicator

Do you ever get into a situation where you need to copy an entire composition, including its sub compositions? True Comp Duplicator makes that task way easier.

Select the composition, type in a new name, change around a few options to fit your needs, then click “Duplicate Selected”, and you’re done! A Cumbersome task turned easy.

8. DecomposeText

Very useful for when you want to animate text individually without having to type each separate character by hand. It splits up each character into its own text layer and it aligns them perfectly as if it was one layer. A super simple tool but highly useful!

Welp, that’s it! I hope at least one of these tools can help you out in your future projects!