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Like this article? We recommend 4. FreeformAE

4. FreeformAE

This is one filter we've been recommending for years, and now anyone who uses CS5 will have its power at their disposal. Previously sold for $300 as a third party plug in, FreeformAE from Digieffects now comes bundled free with After Effects CS5. If you’ve ever tried to actually bend or twist a layer in true 3D space, you should be excited about FreeformAE. Freeform essentially maps any layer onto a mesh, which you can then push, pull or twist in true 3D space. With its powerful and easy-to-use displacement features, FreeformAE can make images flutter like fabric, extrude and bend into 3D shapes, twist into strands of DNA, or crunch up into balls like discarded pieces of paper. It interacts completely with After Effects' own cameras and lighting, making it a truly unique addition to your After Effects Toolkit.

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