Trapcode Particular

Particle Group > Particle Type

The Particle Type is the building block of Trapcode Particular. By default, the plug-in uses the Sphere particle.


Particle Type

The list below gives a basic definition and optimal controls to use with each Particle Type.


 Sphere: (Default) Basic round particle. Control its softness with Particle > Sphere Feather


 Glow Sphere (No DOF): Glowing round particle with adjustable Feathering and Glow.


 Star (No DOF): Star-shaped particle with glow with adjustable Rotation and Glow.


 Cloudlet: A randomized shape resembling a small cloud with adjustable Feathering and Rotation.


 Streaklet: A long exposure, light painting effect. Control with the Streaklet group.


 Sprite: Use any local layer as a particle. More info here.


 Sprite Colorize: Use and colorize lightness of any local layer as a particle. More info here.


 Sprite Fill: Use and colorize the alpha of any local layer as a particle. More info here.

ptype_texture  Textured Polygon: Use any local layer as a particle with 3D orientation. More info here.

 Textured Polygon Colorize: Same as Textured Polygon with lightness colorization. More info here.


 Textured Polygon Fill: Same as Textured Polygon but with alpha colorization. More info here.


 Square: Square particles, which cannot be feathered.


 Circle (No DOF): A basic round particle that cannot be affected by depth of field.

Sphere, Glow Sphere, Star

The Sphere is the default option in Particle Type, it is a simple round dot that lends itself well to particle systems, which are often spherical shaped units. Dust, snow and rain are all common examples of rounded particle systems. Glow Sphere is a glowy version of the sphere shape. Star is s simple four-pointed shape that has a glow applied.




Glow Sphere




A Cloudlet is a randomized shape that looks like a small cloud. It looks like smoke when the color is dark gray, and like clouds when the color is white.

Note: Smokelet, an old particle type, is the same as Cloudlet.


A Streaklet is a long exposure, light painting effect.







The Sprite particle is a custom layer loaded into Particular. A custom layer (or texture) needs to be selected for the Sprite by going into Particle > Texture and choosing the layer in the Layer popup. The layer can be a still image or an animated movie.

Note that Sprites are always orientated towards the camera. If you are looking to use a true 3D layer, you'll want to use the Textured Polygon particle type.

When you first apply Sprite, you won't see anything appear until the Sprite has a layer to sample from.

Textured Polygon

The Textured Polygon is also a custom layer loaded into Particular, which can be a still image or an animated movie. While Sprites types face the 3D camera and don't move independently, the Textured Polygons are objects with their own independent 3D rotation and space.

The Textured Polygon doesn't orient to the After Effects 3D camera. Instead you can see the particles from different directions, from all sides, and you can see their thickness change in rotation. Textured Polygon has controls for rotation and rotation speed on all three spatial axes. It will stay put when you orbit the camera around it. This Particle Type acts more like a regular 3D layer.

When you first apply Textured Polygon, you won't see anything appear until the Textured Polygon has a layer to sample from. In our example below, Textured is using a triangle-shaped image.

particle-texture texture-layer-5c
Textured Polygon Layer image

Sprite Colorize, Texture Polygon Colorize

Colorize is a colorizing mode that uses lightness values to color the particles. This mode appears as Sprite Fill and Texture Polygon Fill.

Sprite Fill, Texture Polygon Fill

Fill is also a colorizing mode. This mode only fills the alpha of the particles with color. This mode appears as Sprite Fill and Texture Polygon Fill.


Sprite Colorize


Textured Polygon Fill


Square creates particles with hard, sharp edges. This is great for creating low poly looks or patterns.


Circle (no DOF)

Circle (no DOF) creates circular particles that are not affected by depth of field.