Envato Elite - Thanks + Tips to Beginners

First Let me introduce myself:
Hey, I’m Pedro, 23, from Rio de Janeiro - Brazil

I was thinking of a way to thank the Envato team and this amazing community for everything I’ve achieved here. That’s why I decided to make these 6 tips for those who are starting in After Effects projects from scratch, as I was 3 years ago!

Just to make it clear, these tips are not absolute truths and are based on my experience making After Effects projects for Videohive.

Three years ago I had just met Envato and Videohive and I was super excited seeing other people’s incredible projects, generating lots of sales.

I kept doing calculations on my head of how much they earned (I know you’ve done it too!) based on their sales and was impressed with the values ​​and the possibility of earning so much from a remote job and working only with what I liked. I only had this one little problem: I had zero knowledge of After Effects.

1. Study More

Excited and determined, I immersed in web tutorials, YouTube, bought some film editing and motion graphics courses and read numerous articles about design. So here is my first tip to you: Learn as much as you can, see as many tutorials as possible, buy courses - lots of courses -, buy other people’s projects to analyze it; no knowledge is useless.

So I studied for several days, learned lots and lots of techniques until I finally got my first project done. I was extremely anxious and kept refreshing my dashboard page from minute to minute looking at the loading bar of my project analysis (Thank God Envato team decided to end this bar, it was a psychological torture), so it finally came my turn and … hard rejection.

Face the fact: Unless you have experience in the area, your first projects have a big chance of being rejected. And this is not necessarily a bad thing. If your project was rejected it’s because it was not good enough, would not sell well and would overshadow other items in your portfolio, or simply would reduce the credibility of consumers in your other projects.

I persisted and today I’m studying at a graphic design college fully paid by Videohive earnings. :sunglasses:

With time you learn it, see how my earnings changed across the years:
Better a quality project than 20 bad or medium ones. This leads me to the second tip.

2. Making projects that sells

To do a project the first thing is to have an idea, and how to achieve it?

Browse Videohive, search by categories, have a good look at popular templates (they’re popular for a reason) and look for referrals outside the site too. Sometimes you watch something on TV or YouTube or any other place and this gives you the idea of ​​a project that might be viable.

Analyze the market and seek for a niche for you.

Look for a differential

I’ll use a project of mine as an example. I did a lot of research at the time and figured there was few wedding videos with good amount of sales and most of it were focusing on the happiness aspect of marriage.

What was my differential? I focused on the emotional aspect, using pictures of a mother crying of emotion, the bride at the altar, cheering friends, children, and everything in black and white and with an amazing piano dramatic song (to increase the drama).

With a theme and a good idea, the rest is trial and error.

Recicle great projects

If you go through Videohive as much as I do, I’m sure you’ll come across a template that let you create 3D lines between countries on Earth, it has thousands of sales. I saw this project and I remembered those airplane videos flying between countries in 2D.

I didn’t think twice. Searched all map templates and discovered that no one had yet explored that possibility. So “Travel Routes Maker” was born, with the differential of being all in 2D and using an airplane. See this comment that another author made on this project:

"Great and fresh revision of the similar items! Good job mate! :smile: "-


Make tools

In my experince, tool-like projects almost always make good sales. Make a package of animated elements, an Explainer video maker, Special effects maker. Basically anything "maker" will always be a good option.

3. Know the difference between inspiration and plagiarism

Quoting a phrase from a little book that inspired me a lot (Steal like an artist by Austin Kleon): Nothing is original.

No project is 100% original, every project is born from references. And it’s the number of references involved that will turn your project into something “new.”

“What is originality? Plagiarism Not Detected.”- William Ralph Inge

BUT, copying the movements, colors, fonts with total fidelity, or copying everything and adding nothing new, changing only minimal details: this is not using references, it’s plagiarism.

4. Quantity vs Quality

This is a controversial subject, but to me the answer is very simple: Either way.

Quantity = Less time, less chances to have good profits, smaller lifespan.

Quality = More time, more chances to have good profits, longer lifespan.

Just clarifying that any project will need to have quality to be accepted in Videohive, the question is the time spent on planning and developing the project.

5. Find needs

The purpose of After Effects projects is nothing more than to meet someone’s needs, or sometimes to create new needs. Let me give you a practical example:

Watching some channels on YouTube, I noticed that often they quote comments from users, being it from YouTube or Twitter. I also watched on a sports channel a box with Twitter comments.

And so “Social Media Bundle” was born, a collection of everything that will need to be presented in terms of social media on web channels or TV.

6. Getting Your Projects Accepted

There are some technical points that are indispensable in your project.

First, you must always follow the design principles:


And motion principles even more:

12 basic principles of animation in motion design

Don’t know how to use colors?

In addition to learning about color theory and the chromatic circle, one tip I can give you is: Look for projects with great color combinations on sites like Dribble and Behance and copy good colors. There are also a bunch of websites that offer good color palettes.

To copy great colors on the web, I use this excellent program called Colorpic.

Learn the feel of your project and copy great colors without fear. Also keep an eye on design trends.

Have a purpose:

Do you imagine that your project will be used by video producers and design agencies to speed up their process? Or by ordinary people on commemorative dates? If you don’t have your goal in mind, costumers will not have it either.

Organize your project:

Your project can be used by someone who has never used After Effects in life, so facilitate their life as much as possible, take them by the hand and guide them. I like to let any layer a beginner shouldn’t touch hiden!

Simulate a real-life utility:

Will you make a promotional video for apps? So make an application with a functionality, even if it is fictional and use your project to make a great promo video for this app that clarifies what it does. It is much better than using “lorem ipsums”.

Predict customer questions:

A slideshow with a limited number of photos? You’re likely to get questions like “Can I add more pictures?” It has happened to me and if I had thought about this question before, I would have had a new consumer.


That’s it guys, I’m extremely happy and grateful for reaching this milestone, hope these tips can be useful for someone. Now let me keep my work for the 125k mark because I need that t-shirt! :grin:


Very inspiring text.

I started a short time in videohive and had many hard rejecteds, the tips that you passed in this text was something that I was looking for a long time, someone who had already walked the path I’m starting now

I really appreciate sharing this stuff.

Note. I’m from Brazil, too. :smile:

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Congratulations :slight_smile: Great achievement! Well done! And thank you for all the great insights. Really inspiring! Keep it up!

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Congratulations :tada: great achievement at such young age. Good luck for more :smile:

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Great achievement, congratulations, @MotionIdea! And really good article :+1:

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Congratulations on your success Pedro! Thanks for sharing your tips and experience :slight_smile:

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I found this text inspiring and motivating.

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Thank you!! very good text and advices!! :smiley:

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@MotionIdea Congratulations for the Elite Badge :tada: Thanks for sharing such nice guide for beginners

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