Trapcode Shine

Fractal Noise

The Fractal Noise group enables the addition of fractal noise to the light rays from Shine, which can be used to simulate smoke or fog in a scene.

Original ImageWith Fractal Noise enabled


The Enable checkbox turns on Fractal Noise when checked.

Center controls the position of the noise.

The X Speed, Y Speed, and Evolution Speed values can be used to quickly animate the fractal noise without using keyframes. The X Speed and Y Speed values specifically are helpful for simulating wind.

The X Speed property increases the speed along the X axis (left and right). The further the value is from 0, the faster the noise will move. Positive values simulate wind blowing the noise to the right. Negative values cause the noise to move to the left.

The Y Speed property increases the speed along the Y axis (up and down). The further the value is from 0, the faster the noise will move. Positive values simulate wind blowing the noise downwards. Negative values cause the noise to move upwards.

To animate the evolution of the noise, adjust the Evolution Speed property. This will cause the noise to "evolve" and animate automatically. The higher the value, the faster the animation will be.

NOTE: To turn off all fractal noise animation, all three of these values will need to be set to 0.

The Noise Type drop down menu allows you to choose how the fractal noise is controlled.

  • 2D - This is the default setting, and creates noise that is two dimension. When 2D is selected, the position of the fractal noise is controlled by the Center property.
  • 3D Light - When the Noise Type drop down menu is set to 3D Light the fractal noise can be controlled by an After Effects light, and therefore move in 3D space. To identify which light Shine should use as the noise controller, rename the light based on the selection in the Name Point Name drop down menu.
  • 3D Light with Parallax - With this option selected, the fractal noise becomes layered in Z space. This can create a parallax effect in the noise when animated in 3D space (as with an After Effects camera) or with the Rotation parameter.
  • The Noise Point Name drop down menu allows you to choose the name for the After Effects light used to control the fractal noise: Noise, A Light, or B Light. The light in your composition must be renamed to precisely match the option chosen in this drop down.
  • NOTE: When 3D Light is selected from the Noise Type drop down, the position of the light essentially becomes the position of the fractal noise. The other parameters of the light (e.g. Intensity, Radius, Color, etc.) have no effect on the fractal noise.
  • Parallax Z Depth controls the Z position of the fog. The fog appears more distant as the Parallax Z Depth value increases, and closer to the camera as the value is lowered.
  • NOTE: The Parallax Z Depth option is only available when the Noise Type drop down menu is set to 3D Light with Parallax.
  • Brightness expands the white areas into the gray and darker areas in the image if brought up over its default 100 setting, or you may darken the image by bringing it down below 100.

NOTE: Brightness only affects the fractal noise, not the light created by Shine.

You can use the Contrast parameter to intensify the difference between the black and white areas of the noise pattern (by increasing the Contrast value), or bring black and white closer to gray, decreasing contrast (by decreasing the Contrast value).

Opacity lets you adjust how opaque the noise is. Higher values create more opaque noise. Reducing the Opacity value reduces the transparency of the fractal noise, letting the background layer show through.

Opacity 100%Opacity 100%

The Size parameter allows you to control the size of the fractal noise. Reducing the Size value creates more finely detailed noise.

Size = 70Size = 15

Fractal noise is created by compositing layers of noise together. The Complexity control refers to the amount of these layers used to create the noise. Lower Complexity values reduce detail in the noise.

Complexity = 4Complexity = 1

Rotation allows you to rotate the layers of noise. The noise rotates around the Center point if 2D is chosen in the Noise Type drop down menu, or around the light if one of the 3D options is chosen.

NOTE: If the Noise Type is set to 3D Light with Parallax, animating Rotation will create parallax. Otherwise, all layers of noise will rotate together.

No RotationRotation = 90 degrees

If Use Noise Mask is enabled, an elliptical mask will limit the radius of the fractal noise. This is helpful if you want to simulate the fractal noise gathering around the light, which is similar to how fog appears in the real world.

The boundaries of the mask can be adjusted with the Fractal Mask Radius property. Larger Fractal Mask Radius values increase the radius of the mask, while lower values shrink it.

The edges of the noise mask can be softened by increasing the Fractal Mask Feather value.

Noise Mask enabledNoise Mask enabled
Fractal Mask Feather = 0Fractal Mask Feather = 85

Chose from the Fractal Blend Mode drop down to select the blending mode used to composite the Fractal noise result over the rays of light from Shine. These are mostly similar to the blend modes in Adobe After Effects, with the notable exception of the Cutout blend mode, which removes the white and light gray parts of the fractal noise.


The Fractal Detail property allows you to reduce or increase the detail of the noise as a whole. This is particularly helpful if your camera gets close and you need some additional noise detail.