I always had a problem how to put layers in a circle. How do I know where they should be? What if I want to add more elements or make a bigger circle? Without Expressions it was a nightmare. Fortunately I found a solution. Here is my first tutorial from the upcoming series „Work smart, not hard”.  In this tutorial I’ll show you have to align a series of layers in a perfect circle. Beside that I prepared presets for you. You can download them at the bottom of the page.

How to use Circular Placement?

1.  Add a Null Object to your Composition and rename it to „Center”.
2. Add to this Null Object a preset called Circular Placement – Null from Effects & Presets window.
3. Add other objects to your Composition.
4. Use on them a preset called Circular Placement – Layer from Effects & Presets window.
5. Change the „amount  of  layers” on your Null Object to number of layers in your composition.

Circular Placement Preset - Adobe After Effects - Trojan

How to install:

Preset works with Adobe After Effects: CS5, CS5.5, CS6, CC, CC 2014 and CC 2015. Download the Circular Placement preset ZIP file and unzip it to your local drive. Folder called Bartlomiej Otlowski with Circular Placement subfolder inside copy into the following directory:

Windows:
Adobe\Adobe After Effects*\Support Files\Presets
Mac:
Applications/Adobe After Effects*/Presets
*your version of Adobe After Effects

If the Bartlomiej Otlowski folder already exists in the Presets folder then choose the Merge Folder option or just copy the Circular Placement folder into this folder instead. Subfolder will helps you to keep order.

Circular Placement Preset - Adobe After Effects - Trojan

Restart your After Efects to scan the Presets folder and to add any new presets to the Effects & Presets panel. Twirl down the *Animation Presets menu and you will find the Bartlomiej Otlowski folder. Open it and you will find two presets inside subfolder Circular Placement. Or you can type the beginning of the name in the Effects & Presets panel and it will shows up.

Download Circular Placement preset