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Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free After Effects Replacment

From: Alexander Prokudin
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] Free After Effects Replacment
Date: Wed, 13 Apr 2016 21:04:19 +0300
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:38.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/38.6.0

07.04.2016 20:55, Fabio Pesari пишет:
On 04/07/2016 05:05 PM, mray wrote:
I'm very interested to hear a word from them, too - but I doubt that
they exist.
They do exist:

I think this is backwards. We currently have a quite depressing
situation concerning motion graphics. There is just *no* replacement for
AE (not even one that *tries* to imitate it). Blender and Synfig come
closest to it but really fall into different categories of software.
Having this gap in Free Software tools is the real limitation.
In my opinion the only reason a lot of people (we're talking
"Youtubers", right?) use After Effects is because they want to be "like
the pros", not because free software isn't good enough (at least in
terms of video editing and post-production; haven't tried Natron for

I really would like the opinion of people who are really knowledgeable
about the field, so I'm putting the founder of in CC.


Sorry for the late reply.

People use AE mainly for the following reasons:

- tons of educational material (books, tutorials)
- having AE skills looks good in CV
- the studio they were or would be hired by has been using AE for ages and has its production pipeline built around AE, with plugins, customizations etc.

In particular, the latter is the major roadblock to switch from AE to some free software for studios that already use Blender: they just don't have the time or money to redo everything with only free software and test the new pipeline. That's what I heard from pretty much every studio I spoke to back when I did the annual 'Best commercials produced with Blender' series. The only exceptions were the studios that were _started_ by Blender users.

You can't fix it by switching people to Synfig which, like AE, has layer-based FX engine. You can't fix it by swithing them to either Blender or Natron (node-based engine). There is just no free/libre drop-in replacement for AE and -- let's be realistic -- there never will be one. Noone's going to write a whole new layer-based VFX package with AE's API, noone will be able to get every 3rd party developer out there to rebuild, test _and_ support their stuff for this copycat.

You will always have studios that use whatever suits them best, and in many case it won't be free software. But you will also have studios started by people who learned their skills with free software. Which is why the only way to change the suituation somewhat is to educate people, and I don't mean lecturing them about free/libre and GNU -- I mean teaching them actual Blender/Natron/GIMP/Krita/etc. skills that will put food on their tables.

Not sure if that's the kind of reply you expected from me, but here it is :)


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