Move Shapes runs through a quick shape layer tutorial animating a Mandala effect in Ae.
Say what you will about the UX of After Effects, but the truth is that we don’t have anything else when it comes to vector-style animations, really. Ae shape layers while very powerful, can be a mess to manage and work with. However, if you want to create instanced and repeating elements such as a mandala effect, you can’t go wrong with shape layers.
Peter Arumugam also known as Move Shapes on the net, walks through how to set up a simple mandala animation working with Ae’s shape layer system. In case you missed the others, Peter has posted a few more tutorials using shape layers that are really helpful for making simple looping animations.