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Create a Spellbinding Doctor Strange Shield in After Effects

Caleb Ward

Learn how to create a mystical mandala shield in the spirit of Doctor Strange with this exclusive After Effects tutorial. Includes free project files.

Every now and then, you see an effect in a movie that’s so cool, you simply have to try to recreate it yourself. As Doctor Strange takes box offices by storm, we thought it would be fun to put together a quick tutorial explaining how to create the hero’s magical mandala shield in After Effects.

The tutorial below takes you though every step of the process. You’ll probably be surprised at how easy it is to create the highly detailed shield effect using shape layers and a simple Polar Coordinates effect.

Download the Free Project Files + Assets

Below you’ll find a link to download the free project files and assets used in this tutorial. You are free to use these files for educational purposes, but please don’t distribute them without our permission.


Radium: 120 Gorgeous 4K Lens Flares

In the tutorial, I use a clip from Radium, a beautiful pack of lens-flare elements from Shutterstock Elements. Radium is the fastest way to add organically captured lens flares into your video sequences. Here’s a quick demo of Radium in action.

Want to learn more about After Effects? Check out the After Effects section on our blog. You’ll find hundreds of exclusive articles and tutorials dedicated to helping you become a better After Effects artist. If you have any requests for future tutorials, please feel free to reach out.

Have any tips for taking this effect over the top? Share your thoughts in the comments below.