PHOTO 2D to 3D with PhotoMotionX

In this post, we are going to have a look at a very interesting product named Photomotion. This is a highly advanced project-based template for After effects and you can use it to created something like this:

This is the before foto used for the animation

This product can be bought on the Envato Market place. The regular price is $89. This product has been sold more than 20.000 times and still has a 5 star raiting, which says enough I think.

Photomotion coms with 5 different templates, also called projections. They are all made for different types of photos. To get the best results and to save time you need to know the difference between each projection, so I am going to show you each one with a couple of examples included as well.

1.    Parallax

The first one is the most basic of them all which is called Parallax. With Parallax, you can create beautiful animations in no time just by splitting your photos up into layers. This one isn’t using the 3D space in aftereffects, but it just makes clever use of different layers to create depth, which makes this one more like 2.5D instead of real 3D.

This one works well with photos where you cannot see the ground / floor beneath the main subjects. In this example you can see why if you look at the guy in the background.

2.    Portrait

Where Parallax is used to separate important objects from the background, Portrait is more focused on animating faces. As the name already implies, this one is great for portraits or pictures where someone is standing close to the camera.

You can use a 3D face mesh which is a 3D representation of the face. This will help you to target essential parts like eyes, ears, nose, and mouth to get the best fit for this effect. This one is not limited to one person, you can animate multiple people or use that option for photos including a mirror. There is also a feature where you can make the person keep looking into the camera, it’s really easy to do. It’s just one checkbox.

Portrait also has a few more interesting options like changing eye color, the size of the eyes, and  adding makup.

3.    Mirage

This one is used to add movement to static elements that should be organic (e.g. water, smoke, sky). Mirage can animate such elements and create infinitely looping which is perfect for Instagram posts.

Mirage PhotoMotion X
This is the before photo used for this animation

Here you also start by making a mask and then use the liqify or puppet tool to animate the elements.

You can use the auto camera movement option which will create camera movement without keyframes and also automatically loops the movement as well.

4.    Glacier

This is the only projection that is made to work with video files and not photos.  Here you use a video and freeze everything except the part that you would like to animate. Glacier also has the option for a seamless loop or boomerang effect.

This one can give give very interesting effects. Your brain expects movement, because other parts of the frame have motion. A great way to get more attention from your viewers.

5.    Horizon

This is the most advance projection in Photomotion. Unlike Parallax which is more 2D, this on actually uses the 3D space of After Effects. Here you can pin-point the subject down to the position they stand on, create a 3d cage and split the rest of the image into separate 3d layers. Because you use 3D layers you can go really deep into your pictures, just like this example here.

Again, this is the more advanced projection, it will take you some time to create something special.


I’m pretty excited about this product and that’s why I thought it deserved a dedicated video(which you can find here:
I can definitely recommend PhotoMotion, but I won’t say that this is for everyone. It has a bit of a steep learning curve and you do need some basic knowledge of after effects to be able to use PhotoMotion. But once you get the hang of it, you can really create some stunning masterpieces.

To be fair PhotoMotion is a bit pricey at $89. But I also believe that the quality of this tool and the excellent after-sale support justifies the high price. Anyway, if you still feel that PhotoMotion is too expensive than you might want to look into some alternatives. One of them would be the 3D portrait template, which is included in a subscription of the website of our sponsor Envato Elements.

To be clear i’m not paid or sponsored by PhotoMotion to make this video. All that I received is a free copy for testing purposes.

Other useful links related to the video:

►Transitions used in this video:
►MUSIC used in this video:
►MICROPHONE used for my voiceover: (Amazon Link) ► EDITING done in Adobe Premiere Pro CC. Try, buy, download or upgrade Adobe Premiere Pro CC here: or get the complete creative cloud apps suite: Learn the Premiere Pro basics in 25 minutes here:
►END SCREEN template used:

This post contains some affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase through one of my links I may earn a small commission – at no extra cost to you. Thanks a billion!


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