Talking Hand from Demon Slayer (After Effects Tutorial)

Learn how to motion track a mouth to your hand hand like Enmu from Anime ‘Demon Slayer’ in this Adobe After Effects tutorial video.

Motion Tracking

Adding a talking mouth to your hand comes basically down to motion tracking. And if you want to get it right, it’s going to involve multiple types of tracking.

For starters there’s the movement of your hand. This is easy, simply paint a dot on your hand and use the After Effects motion tracker. Next, you link the mouth to the tracking and that’s it.

But now comes the tricky part. Even though the mouth is following the hand movement, it doesn’t really stick to the hand. That’s because the mouth moves around as well, definitely when talking.

Complex Movements

The easiest way to get the movement from the mouth is by simply stabilizing it. Or at least, make sure that the X and Y movements are stable.

Lip movement while laughing or talking is going to be more complex. You can’t stabilize this. The idea is to make the skin from your hand stretch along with the lips.

Tracking In Mocha for Adobe After Effects
Tracking In Mocha for Adobe After Effects

We found a great way of motion tracking different points on the lips. Then we would add pin points from the puppet tool onto the hand and link these to the tracking points. Voila, problem solved!

Yannick found another great way of using the CC smear effect. If you don’t feel comfortable, you can manually animate that effect. Or you can again link it to some tracking points from the lips.

Learning Adobe After Effects

Performing such tasks in Adobe After Effects is always a learning path. Even we had to try out different methods to get the motion tracking right. Plus, there are even multiple ways of doing it.

So if something doesn’t work, don’t give up! Keep trying different techniques and tool. Eventually you’ll get it to work 🙂

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