Motion Graphics Library

Formlabs is a 3D printing technology developer and manufacturer based in Boston, Massachusetts. They design and manufacture stereolithography (SLA) and selective laser sintering (SLS) 3D printers for professionals.

They create their own web video clips, marketing material, trailers, interviews and all other video assets through their in-house Studio department and release many assets daily.

As the videography department grows and more artists collaborate on projects, the risk for inconsistency and mistakes across those aforementioned videos increases. There is a heavy use of motion graphics such as callouts, lower thirds, name & location tags, watermarks and titles included in the videos. Their integration into projects are difficult and the assets are often created from scratch every time. The need for reusable templates is of crucial importance considering the increasing use of graphics in videos. This will improve the workflow, the consistency and, finally, help maintain the strong and recognizable brand image across all created assets.

A study of the Studio’s current workflow offered insights and a greater grasp of the pain points. These include the constant back and forth between Premiere Pro and Adobe After Effects to make the graphics, and the hours spent re-creating those graphics each time they are used.

As part of the solution, various motion graphics were created in After Effects, heavily using Expressions (Javascript) to create dynamic elements linked to a control panel, tailored to the team’s needs. That control panel allows modifying only predefined parameters such as color, text, font and spacing, while hiding irrelevant or complicated ones that you would normally find in the timeline, thus reducing the risk of confusion or mistake.

Through responsive animations, the ability to shorten or lengthen the motion graphics in the timeline without affecting or having to use keyframes helps create an intuitive and fast process for the user.

Callouts can easily be motion tracked to videos, mirrored on both axes based on their quadrant, and have additional “text boxes” added and stacked dynamically.

What’s more, all the templates are adapted to work with Premiere, eliminating the need for After Effects for simple projects and, therefore, greatly improving the workflow.

A thorough and complete documentation was written for each motion graphic template to offer guidance and help when needed, allowing new team members to use the motion graphic pack without extensive training or continuous confusion. 

Due to a non-disclosure agreement, some elements are not covered here to protect the intellectual property of the company I work for.