Look no further, a summary of places to go to when you start learning how to code for Adobe After Effects.

Ae - Scripting Resources to Get You off the Ground

Look no further, a summary of places to go to when you start learning how to code for Adobe After Effects.

Resources for scripting for After Effects

What’s a Rich Text element?

What’s a Rich Text element?

What’s a Rich Text element?

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

The Power Of Expressions

The Power of Expression Book (39$)

I would recommend this one if you don’t have prior programming knowledge. It is simple and straight to the point and it will teach you the basics for programming as well as useful tips in the context of programming for After-Effects. If you feel like the concept is vague for you, consider reading this book as it will help you get things going.


Best Seller
Recolor entire comps like in Illustrator
Convert an image to a palette like in Procreate
Work with palettes like nowhere else
There is no looking back
Colors is the quick and intuitive Color Sampler Adobe forgot to put into After-Effects. People who used Colors have said they can't see themselves going back to working without it ever again
Key Features
  • Quickly sample frames from photos / videos into a palette
  • Generates beautiful new palettes for you
  • Left-Click to apply Fill, Right-Click to apply Stroke. With no layers selected it will quickly create a new coloured solid for you.
  • Lets you save palettes for easy use across multiple projects
  • Recolor entire comps including nested comps in a few clicks
  • Easily edit palettes
Buy if...
  • You often find yourself feeling uninspired
  • You don't understand color science well enough, finding it hard to come up with beautiful color combinations
  • You are constantly using workarounds to pick colors, including the Character panel's color picker.
  • You feel like After-Effects is holding you back from being a better designer
  • You are often working with references online, importing screen-grabs and manually sampling color palettes
Why Buy?
Good Boy Ninja
75% OFF
Promo ends 30 Aug, 20:00 UTC

After Effects' Scripting Guide

The official documentation

Once you have the basic grasp of stuff, keep this website open and go back to it for everything you need. If you understand the hierarchy inside After Effects as well as the names of objects (like the difference between a property base object and a property value), this website will essentially help you exploring the concepts you don’t know exist yet. After a few days of using it, you will realize how easy it is to navigate through it and answers for your deepest questions (Okay, maybe not your deeeepest questions).



NTProductions’ youtube channel

This guy started uploading scripting and expressions tutorials back in 2017.


Also, here’s a snippet by NTProductions for creating a dockable UI script for After Effects:


Shape layers on steroids
Why Buy?
Endless Possibilities
Unleash 11 new exciting ways to animate shape layers like the pros
Key Features
  • Reshape, Subdivide, Fractalize and Connect points on your path
  • Instantly add dynamics by sequencing each effect along the path points, making each point animate with a specified delay
  • Reorder the effects for virtually endless combinations
  • Automatically animated to an input wave for instant creativity
  • Plug multiple effects to the same animator for synced motions
Buy if...
  • You are often being told to make an illustration 'breathe' for long loopable projections in keynotes and events
  • You are often asked to add dynamics to boring, regular geometric shapes in logos or symbols
  • You often work with loops, music or other rhythmic elements
  • You are underwhelmed by the limited set of shape animators in After-Effects
  • You are into modular, procedural systems
  • You are looking for hours of fun

Search google

Seriously, you are not the first and not the last. This means most of your questions have already been asked and answered. There’s a pretty big record of developers over the years asking questions regarding both expressions and scripting for After Effects, and even a bigger community of JavaScript programmers discussing concepts that will work in ExtendScript as well.



RenderTom's GitHub library

RenderTom is a name you will stumble upon quite often as you google search for answers. This guy has a long history of helping people online.


Give shapes soft-body like physics,
Create loose-tracking
and smooth slippery motions
Why Buy?
Noodle saves your butt
By adding secondary motions automatically, it will save you from evil clients who ask for too many last-minute changes.

It's the animator's wettest dream.
Key Features
  • Simulate 'soft' / 'delayed' parenting
  • Create 'soft body' like effects by making paths react to layer transforms
  • Adds 'jello' effect to puppet-pin rigs
  • Updates automatically to changes in the original motion
  • Point-by-point control for shape layers squash and stretch
  • Bake / Unbake for maximum performance
Buy if...
  • Your clients often harras you with too many last minute changes
  • You are often facing tight deadlines and looking for ways to animate more easily without compromising on quality
  • Your timelines are often bloated with keyframes
  • You are missing 'soft body' like simulators from other software which do not exist in After-Effects
  • You are animating NSFW illustrations or images and looking for a quick way to add bounce and jiggle to your products
ScriptUI Dialog Builder

ScriptUI Dialog builder

This tool created by Joonas Pääkkö lets you design a scriptUI panel visually and then export the code. It is incredibly helpful as it lets you brainstorm your UI ideas visually before spending hours on coding them again and again. Also, it's free!


Pseudo Effect Maker

Pseudo Effect Maker (17.99$)

Pseudo effect maker lets you create plug-in-like effect interfaces. Essentially, they don’t do anything but being a group of sliders and controls, but you can however connect your own properties to them through expressions and therefore have them actually do stuff.


Good Boy Ninja

Good Boy Ninja's Knowledge Hub

The Good Boy is also sharing code snippets, both for expressions and scriptings. You can use those code snippets in your projects, simply copy and paste them.


Paths from Nulls
Why Download?
What does it do?
It connects existing nulls with a new path
Key Features
  • Connect multiple nulls with a path
  • Choose whether the new path points follow the nulls using an expression or not
  • Hold Alt while hovering the interface to reveal the options to connect other layer types (like solids and footage) instead of nulls
  • Optional: simulate ropes when bringing the new path points closer together
Download if
  • Eager clients often ask you to connect a lot of corporate logos and trademarks with a line, or a dashed line
  • You often import 3D camera tracking data from other software and interested in creating bridges / geometric shapes using the tracked points
  • You are intrested in a free, easy plexus alternative
  • You like free tools!
How to install
the tools of the
Good Boy Ninja?
(Make Money)
Good Boy Ninja
Motion Designer since 2008.
Maker of tools for Adobe After-Effects
Quick jump:
June 7, 2020
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