Particular 2: Overview

Particular 2: Overview

Posted on 08. Jul, 2009 by in After Effects

It’s finally here. Trapcode Particular 2. Check out this video tutorial to learn more about my favorite new features.

We’ve all been waiting for this moment. Trapcode has finally released the second version of the most popular plugin in the After Effects world – Particular. In this tutorial I’ll present some of the new features of this amazing plugin creating Tea Cups With Lids Amber Rings Wholesale Tea Trays Toddler Sleeping Bags four small projects. We’ll start off slowly and then move to some more advanced things, but as always – Peder Norby (who is the founder of Trapcode and the plugin developer) had made all the new features super easy, and the Particular itself is now even more accessible and robust.

Below is the list of those four mini projects we’ll be creating in this tutorial along with the features they explain. If you want to see the results there’s a video on my YouTube channel.

  1. Light Streaks [Streaklet, Shading, Position Subframe, Light Emitters]
  2. Dark Alley [Shading, Trapcode Lux, Light Falloff]
  3. Micro Particles [Textured Polygon, 3d Rotation, Spherical Field, Emission Extras]
  4. School of salmon [Textured Polygon, Orient To Motion, Motion Paths, Turbulence Field]

This tutorial is very brief on all the subjects, but it will surely fill your head with some ideas and hopefully make you create something that you’ve always wanted to do, but never had the tool to do it. Well… now you have it – Trapcode Particular 2. I will be making more tutorials on this amazing plugin, so stay tuned.

As a side note: you can support this site by buying Trapcode Particular at Toolfarm, or if you already own it you can simply get Trapcode Particular Upgrade. Trapcode plugins are one of the few that I recommend for any After Effects user to have in his toolbox – whatever you do, at some point you will need it, so get it now.

Download: Tutorial project file (After Effects CS3)

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58 Responses to “Particular 2: Overview”

  1. Ryan Ragle

    08. Jul, 2009

    Great demonstration of Particular 2! LOVE the fishes.

  2. James Wicks

    09. Jul, 2009

    Great tutorial(s)!
    One of the best plugins just got better.
    And Maltaannon makes it look so easy.

    James Wicks

  3. Thomas Stocker

    09. Jul, 2009

    So much inspiration at once! Also can’t wait to explore those new features ☺

    By the way: Love the new Look of your website!

  4. peter

    09. Jul, 2009

    good demonstration. like the fishes :)

  5. Piotr

    09. Jul, 2009

    Amazing man, I also love the fishes. Dzjekuje Bardzo.

  6. Rami

    09. Jul, 2009

    Hi Maltaannon,

    Great tutorial. I really love your all your tuts.

    Can you PLEASE add the option to DOWNLOAD your tuts from your website????

    • John Stanowski

      13. Jul, 2009

      You can save them. Just right click on the Watch Video Link and save the file. It’ll be called video.flv. Just change the name. You’ll need something that plays flv’s like Adobe Media Player.

  7. Kai

    10. Jul, 2009


    too bad I can’t afford it…

  8. khaled

    10. Jul, 2009

    great tutorial i you give me more information and tips
    that i miss

  9. khaled

    10. Jul, 2009

    hay i want your advice
    what the best 3D application that i can use in motion graphic with after effect
    3d studio max -may -cinema4d –
    what you suggest
    I’m relay tired of thinking
    can you help me

  10. v Ralle v

    10. Jul, 2009

    Wow, really nice demonstration. I like it. I also wanted to try out the new particular but at the Red Giant homepage I just can download the old v1.5.1 trial. Is it possible to download somewhere else?

    Btw: beautifull new page maltaannon.

  11. Loay

    10. Jul, 2009

    Thanks a lot

  12. Marc

    11. Jul, 2009

    I don’t like your tutorials
    the tutorials from are better

    • Chaabane

      11. Jul, 2009

      i believe ,maltaannon’s tutorial are great and very usefull ,especially when it comes to expressions, maybe you’re looking just for great lookiing graphics,rather than great tips&tricks for AE.

      you can’t wait AK all your life ,to get a new ideas !!!?

    • Peter

      29. Jul, 2009

      I see kids around whining about tuts, who is better and who is not, this is a place where you can get a lot of tips, AK is great, one of the best around, but there are also great others and thumbs up; maltaannon is one of the them.

  13. Oscar Barrera

    12. Jul, 2009

    Great features!! What about load in particular a photoshop 3D layer as custom particle (or sprite). Could this option serve as workaround to solve the problem of the flat salmons???

    • Jerzy Drozda Jr

      12. Jul, 2009

      Unfortunately no. Polygons are flat, and the textures are flat, therefor Textured Polygon particle will also be flat. No good workaround yet, except the old trick with a camera in the Custom Particle comp connected with your main camera – but that’s really not very elegant solution.

  14. antonyb

    12. Jul, 2009

    I’ve been messing around with Particular 2 the way you have. When I tried to follow your ‘Salmon’ tutorial my fish don’t always point in the same direction. Originally I tried it with an arrow made in a shape player and got that same result; some of the particles face in the opposite direction to the motion path. Any idea why this is happening?

    • Jerzy Drozda Jr

      12. Jul, 2009

      Yeah, I’ve noticed that too, mostly on the first frame right before the particles start to move. This might be caused by few things, one of which is the fact, that you have few “motion path” sources – like the Motion Path light, Turbulence field, Velocity and others. It’s just something we have to live with for now, but I really don’t find it that disturbing.

      • Antonyb

        12. Jul, 2009

        Mine continue in the ‘wrong’ direction – it’s not just 1 frame..?

        • Jerzy Drozda Jr

          12. Jul, 2009

          that’s what I said above. maybe you’re other forces are pushing it in the other direction stronger than the motion path.

  15. JTRidaura

    13. Jul, 2009

    Hey! very very interesting & funny (of course)


  16. John Dickinson

    14. Jul, 2009

    Great, precise tutorial George. I picked up some handy workflow tips too.

  17. Delgadeth

    17. Jul, 2009

    Jerzy, please tel me how can a do the box that appearance when you writhe?

  18. Phantommxr

    17. Jul, 2009

    I really wish I could afford the new Trapcode plugs for CS4!! but can’t living the life of the starving artist right now!! by the way Jerzy great job on all you do to keep me from being bored !! and I still owe you a pack of smokes, so if you ever get to Tampa area in Florida gimme a shout on the facebook, will buy you a pack !!
    Mike AKA Phantommxr

  19. lyesdays

    18. Jul, 2009

    great jod, it looks so easy now, thanks to you, however I didn’t even get started, cause I don’t have the complete effects folder ,neither Particular, well Id appreciate you lead me to find out how or where I can get that missing folder(free… sure) , yuup I can’t wait to apply the light treaks since it looks so cool :D

    tnx again !!

  20. Emmanuel

    18. Jul, 2009


  21. Dangerdom

    22. Jul, 2009

    Awesome! Great roundup of the new features. Thanks!

  22. Arun

    27. Jul, 2009

    Hi brother i like your tutorials very much.can you show some visual effects tutorials.

  23. Ray

    12. Aug, 2009

    Great! I just used the fish idea for a production shot. I had some flying footage taken from a microlight. The story line takes the camera down to the ocean and needed a link to dolphins taken from a boat. Easy! Dolphin particles seen from a distance look good enough. Its not finished but I can see that it will work very well. Saved me several days if I had done in 3DS Max.

  24. seth

    19. Aug, 2009

    great tuts, loved the salmon example…..
    its amazing what things you can do with this plug-in, and the fact that there are 30 +/- more features, just intriging.

  25. Dyllan

    02. Sep, 2009

    Dude! You are a Machine! Brilliant!


  26. arex

    26. Sep, 2009

    jerzy jestes coolerski =)

  27. james

    19. Nov, 2009

    This is great! I really appreciate the time and quality of your work. I got 2.0 and have been playing with it.
    I found CS4 to be a real let down in general, none of the CC plug ins came with my version, and none of my trapcode or redgiant plug ins will work in CS4, I bought the damn upgrade, and have now disabled it. But it’s not like I have run out of learning in CS3 yet. Just disappointed to have spent money on a product that is less then it’s predecessor. Not exactly like the first George Bush verses the second George Bush,(cause that’s just lame verses lamer) but close.

    • Jerzy Drozda Jr

      19. Nov, 2009

      You should check the source of your CS4 version. It’s been around for a while and all the plugs do work perfectly. Maybe your reseller is a scam. And I agree that the improvement from CS3 to CS4 is not as huge as it was from CS2 to CS3, however, there have been some significant changes as it comes to performance and user-friendliness.

  28. Single

    20. Nov, 2009

    When I open your site in your browser, Safari 4 in Mac OS X, some elements of the page and off to the side and the text is broken: ( Please help me How can I remove the problem?

    • Jerzy Drozda Jr

      20. Nov, 2009

      I wish I knew. I checked the site, it validates, and I did check it in your config. Everything works fine. Don’t know what’s happening on your end. Sorry.

  29. vindey

    28. Dec, 2009

    The best Particule plugin just got better.
    but i just use the old version!
    so that is something wrong when open the project!

    nice work!
    i like Amazing 3D particles !
    it is so cool!

  30. Questioner

    16. Jan, 2010

    what screen recorder do you use? I wish to get that black notification on the top right hand corner to show what im typing

  31. bobo

    02. Feb, 2010

    Sir, i can’t see my particular when i make a particular effect. How can i see particular? pls tell me. I’m just beginer. Pls i hope you will answer me.

  32. manisuresh

    14. Feb, 2010

    hi exlent tut

  33. Fieldpros

    09. Mar, 2010

    Hi Jerzy my name is Dimitris i learn about you from all bets are off ( Aharon Rabinowitz) and i think that you are very charismatic people.Keep us informed!!! and continue the great job…

  34. dwo

    28. Jun, 2010

    for recording screen I like to use Macvide ScreenCap (

  35. Gość

    07. Jul, 2010

    Dobre Jurek, tak trzymaj!

  36. Ric

    09. Oct, 2010

    Wow and thanks for this fantastic Particular Tutorial. I am fairly new to AE and have just got Particular so am keenly searching for Particular tutorials. I am especially impressed with the “Micro Particles” example you went through. I was wondering could this be done with photos? Have 2 or 3 dozen different photos as the particles and the camera move around to periodically focus on 1 or even a set of say 3 that made one whole photo. I have seen a photo montage made with Particular but all the images were aligned to the active camera and not 3D aware as the letters in your tute. Can this be done?

  37. Atlanta Video Production

    25. Oct, 2010

    Awesome demonstration. I just barely know how to use Particular, I need to get deeper into it!

  38. Svetlana

    18. Feb, 2011

    Great demonstration of Particular, it is really useful ,hanks a lot

  39. David

    28. Feb, 2011

    HI, Thanks for the time in creating this, it helped me a lot and cleared up some things I was confused about, fantastic, many thanks

  40. divider

    26. May, 2011

    Really impressive tutorial. But i wonder if u could make matrix code effect using particle playground so a simple video footage would be transformed to a matrix view. Some claim that is possible with AE, but i couldn’t find any prove of that.

  41. jai monee

    22. Jul, 2011

    Thanks for taking the time and posting this. It was very informative – great job!

  42. Name (required)

    31. Jul, 2011

    Thanks for this great video tutorial,

    Greetz, Torb

  43. Krishan inodra

    31. Jul, 2011

    thanks for your very helpful tutorial, i am waiting your next new tutorial So Godbleassing

    Krishan indora [india]

  44. Ashley

    24. Aug, 2011

    Hi, can anyone shed some light on why, when I add the preset snowy night, the particles disappear?