Handy Hands 2

  • Compatibility After Effects
    Please check exact version compatibility under the "COMPATIBILITY" tab below

Author: Alfie Dawes

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Quick Overview

Create, style and pose! Handy Hands 2 gives you the most flexible hands available at the click of a button.

Hands Made Simple

Create hands with a click, style with a click, pose with a click.

All within a single shape layer.


Different Hand Styles New in V2

Layer Count

One Shape Layer

No more timeline clutter! Handy Hands are one shape layer each, keeping things neat and tidy. This also allows you to apply your favourite layer styles and effects without precomposing.

New in Handy Hands 2

  • Style Buttons

    Quickly change the style of your hands with preset styles, including:

    • Simple Fill
    • Separated
    • Tapered
    • Stroke
    • Advanced Stroke
  • Manage Buttons

    Useful utility buttons for managing hands:

    • Swap Left/Right
    • Rotate 180 degrees
    • Add linked hand
  • 3 Fingered Mode
    • Have 3 fingers rather than 4 in some styles.
  • New easy to navigate panel
    • More compact icon based tabs, and a detailed view with text descriptions for each button and feature.


How do I upgrade from Handy Hands 1?

If you purchased Handy Hands 1 after Feb 22, 2023 you can upgrade for free, otherwise the upgrade is $15. Simply login to the same account and the upgrade price will be automatically displayed. If you need assistance please open a support ticket.

How does it work?

The palm is a shape, and the fingers and thumb are strokes. The paths are determined by expressions that work out where each joint should be in 3d space, and then map that to 2d. The stroked hand is based on this, but a bit more complex.

What about grabbing? If it's all one layer, how can I grab something?

Each hand layer has different paths for the fingers, thumb and palm. You can duplicate the hand layer and hide the palm to have a layer that's just digits, which can be put above the object you're grabbing.

Can I get a hand to point at the camera?

Handy Hands only supports Y axis rotation, as well as the normal Z axis rotation. Pointing at the camera is not yet possible.

Does it work with Lottie?

Handy Hands only work with Lottie in the Simple Fill or Simple Stroke style, and you'll have to have "Convert expressions to keyframes" enabled. Unfortunately the other styles are not compatible due to using tapered stokes or merge paths, which are not supported.

What are the full capabilities of the hands?

Check out the documentation for a full list of the styles, and the various different settings and controls available.


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