I was asked if I could provide an animation for our 2010 Christmas Eve services at Ginghamsburg church just outside Dayton, Ohio. Christmas Eve is huge at Ginghamsburg with 8 services, and over 8000 in attendance.
This piece, done entirely in After Effects, kicked off the service and was followed by "Joy to the World". The opening chords played as the final lines in the piece were being spoken.
One of the church members provided the voice over, which I thought turned out surprisingly well for someone with no experience. Music came from Firstcom, and sound effects came from several libraries including freesound.org.
As far as assets were concerned, I was supplied with the end graphic designed by the staff artist at the church (Dan Bracken) in layered PSD form. I created a very simplified milky way shot and earth texture, to match the "cutout" look of the graphic. I then heavily altered and separated into layers a nativity shot, that would ultimately be animated as a 2.5D scene.
The downtown Dayton Illustration was created from scratch in Illustrator. I then took it into Photoshop to texture it, and tweak on the colors.
In After Effects, I made heavy use of CC Sphere (for the earth), Optical Flares (lens flares), Trapcode Particular (Stars and snow), and Trapcode Shine (starglows).
The biggest challenge was that I had very little time. I had to slam this thing together in 2 days. I finally finished at 4:30 on Christmas morning, and the render completed at 10:15 just before the 11:30 rehearsal.
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