After Effects Tip: How To Switch Between Bezier and RotoBezier Curve

In this post, I will show you how to switch between Bezier and RotoBezier Curve in Adobe After Effects. So without any further ado, let’s open After Effects and dive right in!

Step 1

Select the Pen Tool from the top menu bar.

Select Pen Tool in Adobe After Effects

Step 2

Enable the RotoBezier checkbox label.

Check RotoBezier in After Effects

RotoBezier will create a new mask with automatic curves. So when we draw a shape on our canvas, RotoBezier will kind of decide things for you. So instead of having handles to adjust each point in our mask manually, it kind of does it automatically.

Drawing a mask with RotoBezier in After Effects

So if you bring your points closer together, RotoBezier will make them sharper.

Bringing points together in After Effects

If you pull the points away, it will make it more round.

Pulling points further apart in After Effects

That is great and all but how do I switch back to just the regular Bezier without all of the automatic stuff? I just want to see the handles and I want to do everything manually. How do I do that?

Mask and Shape Path

The easiest way to do it is to just right click on the mask – go to Mask and Shape Path – Click on RotoBezier to uncheck it.

Mask and Shape Path After Effects RotoBezier

As you can see it will give you all the handles, which will enable you to manually adjust things.

RotoBezier Handles in After Effects

You can also switch back to RotoBezier but the problem is that when you do go back, you will lose all of your manual adjustments.

Let me show you what I’m talking about here. Let’s right-click again on the mask, choose Mask and Shape PathRotoBezier.

RotoBezier After Effects

And now as you can see, everything goes back to automatic.

Going back to automatic in After Effects RotoBezier

I hope you found this After Effects Tip useful. You can check out all of our Tips on our website. Also, make sure to subscribe to our email list!

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About the author:

Sergei Prokhnevskiy

Sergei Prokhnevskiy is a Charlotte, NC based motion graphics designer, an online tutor, an entrepreneur, and Adobe MAX Master Speaker. Sergei is known for his quick and practical After Effects tips and tricks on YouTube, where he generated well over 6 million views on his tutorials. He has authored an online video course on After Effects Expressions and developed scripts for After Effects. He is also a former senior motion graphics designer at Fox Sports where he worked on graphics for NFL, Super Bowl, MLB, World Series, College Football, NASCAR, Women’s World Cup, and NASCAR Race Hub. He is very passionate about learning and teaching others.


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