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After Effects 7 for Windows and Macintosh: Visual Quickpro Guide

Book Description

Need to take your Adobe After Effects skills to the next level? Learn After Effects the fast, efficient way! This Visual QuickPro Guide uses illustrations and in-depth explanations. You’ll be a master in time!

•    Takes a visual, task-based approach to teaching After Effects, using pictures to guide you through the software and show you what to do.
•    Works like a reference book—you look up what you need and then get straight to work.
•    Concise, straightforward steps and explanations offer the fastest way to learn tasks and concepts.
•    Affordably priced, because buying a computer book shouldn’t be an investment in itself.

Through step-by-step instructions, enhanced by tips, sidebars, and plenty of visual aids, veteran video editor Antony Bolante shows you how to effectively and efficiently import and manage footage, view and edit layers, apply effects, animate type, and more. You’ll learn about key features with real-world examples of how and when features should be used, including what’s new in After Effects 7.0: motion tracker, powerful animation and keyframing controls, high quality keying and matte tools, network rendering, expert effects, nondestructive vector painting, and more!

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
    1. Dedication
  2. Thanks To
  3. 1. After Effects: The Big Picture
    1. The QuickPro Series
    2. Adobe’s Video Bundle
    3. Minimum Requirements
      1. Mac OS
      2. Windows
      3. All systems
    4. Suggested System Features
    5. Professional System Additions
    6. New Features
    7. After Effects Standard and Professional
    8. Mac vs. Windows
    9. Workflow Overview
    10. Interface Overview
      1. Primary panels
      2. Secondary panels
      3. Specialized panels
      4. Even more specialized panels
    11. Setting a Workspace
    12. Customizing the Workspace
    13. Using Viewers
  4. 2. Importing Footage into a Project
    1. Creating and Saving Projects
    2. Opening and Closing Projects
    3. Choosing a Time Display
    4. Specifying Color Settings
    5. Importing Files
    6. Setting Still-Image Durations
    7. Importing Still-Image Sequences
    8. Importing Files with Alpha Channels
    9. Photoshop and Illustrator Files
    10. Importing a Layered File as a Single Footage Item
    11. Importing a Layered File as a Composition
    12. Importing Premiere Pro and After Effects Projects
    13. Importing With Adobe Bridge
    14. Interpreting Interlaced Video
    15. Motion Footage
    16. Setting the Frame Rate
    17. Looping Footage
    18. Removing Film 3:2 Pulldown and 24Pa Pulldown
    19. Pixel Aspect Ratios
    20. Setting the EPS Options
  5. 3. Managing Footage
    1. Displaying Information in the Project Panel
    2. Finding Items in a Project
    3. Sorting Footage in the Project Panel
    4. Organizing Footage in Folders
    5. Renaming and Removing Items
    6. Proxies and Placeholders
      1. Placeholders
      2. Proxies
    7. Viewing Footage
    8. Opening Footage in the Original Application
    9. The Footage Panel
    10. Cueing Motion Footage
    11. Magnifying an Image
    12. Viewing Safe Zones and Grids
    13. Rulers and Guides
    14. Snapshots
    15. Channels
    16. Viewing Transparency
    17. Correcting for Pixel Aspect Ratios
  6. 4. Compositions
    1. Creating Compositions
    2. Choosing Composition Settings
    3. Specifying Composition Presets
      1. Setting a comp’s frame size
      2. Setting a comp’s pixel aspect ratio
      3. Frame rate
      4. Setting a comp’s viewing resolution
      5. Setting a comp’s start-frame number
      6. Setting a comp’s duration
    4. Specifying Advanced Composition Settings
      1. Setting a comp’s anchor
      2. Choosing a comp’s shutter settings
      3. Nesting options
      4. Choosing a 3D rendering plug-in
    5. Setting a Comp’s Background Color
    6. The Composition and Timeline Panels
      1. The Composition panel
      2. The Timeline panel
    7. Setting the Time
      1. Using the Time Controls panel
    8. Adding Footage to a Composition
    9. Adding Layers Using Insert and Overlay
    10. Creating Solid Layers
    11. Creating Adjustment Layers
    12. Nesting Compositions
  7. 5. Layer Basics
    1. Selecting Layers
    2. Changing the Stacking Order
    3. Naming Layers
    4. Switching Video and Audio On and Off
    5. Locking a Layer
    6. Basic Layer Switches
    7. Making Layers Shy
    8. Continuously Rasterizing a Layer
    9. Quality Setting Switches
  8. 6. Layer Editing
    1. Viewing Layers in the Timeline and Layer Panels
    2. The Time Graph
      1. Parts of the time graph
    3. Navigating the Time Graph
      1. The navigator view
    4. The Layer Panel
      1. Parts of the Layer panel
    5. Trimming Layers
    6. Moving Layers in Time
    7. Showing Numerical Editing Controls
    8. Changing a Layer’s Speed
    9. Performing a Slip Edit
    10. Sequencing and Overlapping Layers
    11. Removing a Range of Frames
    12. Duplicating Layers
    13. Splitting Layers
    14. Using Markers
  9. 7. Properties and Keyframes
    1. Layer Property Types
      1. Masks
      2. Effects
      3. Transform properties
      4. Audio properties
    2. Viewing Properties
    3. Setting Global vs. Animated Property Values
    4. Viewing Spatial Controls in the Comp Panel
    5. Transform Properties
      1. Anchor point
      2. Position
      3. Scale
      4. Rotation
    6. Orienting Rotation to a Motion Path Automatically
      1. Opacity
    7. Specifying Property Values
    8. Nudging Layer Properties
    9. Viewing an Audio Waveform
    10. Using the Audio Panel
    11. Animating Layer Properties with Keyframes
      1. Basic keyframing
      2. Keyframe icons
    12. Cueing the Current Time to Keyframes
    13. Selecting and Deleting Keyframes
    14. Moving Keyframes
    15. Copying Values and Keyframes
    16. Using Animation Presets
  10. 8. Playback, Previews, and RAM
    1. Rendering and RAM
      1. Cache flow
      2. Playback and previews
    2. Previewing to a Video Device
    3. Setting the Region of Interest
    4. Using the Time Controls
    5. Using the Live Update Option
    6. Specifying a Fast Preview Option
    7. Using Adaptive Resolution
    8. Using OpenGL
    9. Suppressing Panel Updates
    10. Scrubbing Audio
    11. Comparing Preview Options
    12. Setting the Work Area
    13. Previewing Audio Only
    14. Previewing Wireframes
    15. Rendering RAM Previews
    16. Saving RAM Previews
    17. Purging the RAM Cache
  11. 9. Keyframe Interpolation
    1. Understanding Interpolation
      1. Spatial interpolation
      2. Temporal interpolation
      3. Incoming and outgoing interpolation
      4. Viewing spatial interpolation in the motion path
      5. Viewing temporal interpolation in the Graph Editor
    2. Interpolation Types
      1. No interpolation
      2. Linear
      3. Auto Bézier
      4. Continuous Bézier
      5. Bézier
      6. Hold
      7. Mixed incoming and outgoing interpolation
    3. Specifying the Default Spatial Interpolation
    4. Specifying Spatial Interpolation in the Motion Path
    5. Using the Graph Editor: An Overview
    6. Understanding Value and Speed Graphs
      1. Value graph
      2. Speed graph
    7. Viewing Property Graphs
    8. Specifying the Graph Type
    9. Viewing Optional Information in the Graph Editor
    10. Resizing Property Graphs Automatically
    11. Analyzing Value and Speed Graphs
      1. Keyframe icons and interpolation
    12. Moving Keyframes in the Graph Editor
    13. Adding and Removing Keyframes in the Graph Editor
    14. Setting a Keyframe’s Temporal Interpolation Type
    15. Adjusting Temporal Interpolation Manually
    16. Adjusting Temporal Interpolation Numerically
    17. Applying Keyframe Assistants
    18. Smoothing Motion with Roving Keyframes
  12. 10. Mask Essentials
    1. Viewing Masks in the Layer and Comp Panels
    2. Viewing Masks in the Layer Outline
    3. Hiding and Showing Mask Paths
    4. Targeting Masks
    5. Comparing Mask Creation Methods
    6. Comparing Closed and Open Paths
    7. Understanding Mask Anatomy
      1. Standard masks and Bézier curves
      2. RotoBezier masks
      3. Choosing a mask type
    8. Creating Simple Mask Shapes
    9. Building a Standard Mask with the Pen
    10. Creating a RotoBezier Mask
    11. Converting Masks
    12. Changing the Shape of a Mask
    13. Selecting Masks and Points
    14. Moving and Deleting Control Points
    15. Adding and Deleting Control Points with the Pen Tool
    16. Converting Control Points in a Standard Mask
    17. Adjusting RotoBezier Mask Tension
    18. Opening and Closing Paths
    19. Scaling and Rotating Masks
    20. Using Masks from Photoshop and Illustrator
    21. Converting Mask Paths into Motion Paths
    22. Moving Masks Relative to the Layer Image
    23. Adjusting Other Mask Properties
    24. Inverting a Mask
    25. Mask Modes
  13. 11. Effects Fundamentals
    1. Effect Categories
    2. Using the Effects & Presets Panel
    3. Applying Effects
    4. Viewing Effect Property Controls
    5. Removing and Resetting Effects
    6. Disabling Effects Temporarily
    7. Adjusting Effects in the Effect Controls Panel
    8. Setting an Effect Point
    9. Saving and Applying Effect Presets
    10. Copying and Pasting Effects
    11. Applying Multiple Effects
    12. Applying Effects to an Adjustment Layer
    13. Understanding Compound Effects
    14. Using Compound Effects
      1. Specifying an effect source
      2. Resolving size differences between source and target layers
      3. Using a nested composition as the effect source
    15. Animating Effects
  14. 12. Creating and Animating Text
    1. Setting the Workspace for Text
    2. Creating Type
      1. Point text and paragraph text
    3. Editing Type
    4. Formatting Characters
      1. Font and style
      2. Fill and stroke
      3. Font size
      4. Leading
      5. Kerning and tracking
      6. Vertical and horizontal scale
      7. Baseline shift
      8. Faux bold and faux italics
      9. All caps and small caps
      10. Superscript and subscript
      11. Smart quotes
    5. Setting Options for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean Text
      1. Tsume
      2. Tate-chuu-yoko
    6. Blending Characters
    7. Making Text Follow a Path
    8. Formatting Paragraph Text
      1. Aligning and justifying paragraphs
      2. Indenting paragraphs
      3. Spacing paragraphs
      4. Hanging punctuation
      5. Specifying how After Effects calculates line breaks
    9. Animating Text
      1. Standard layer properties
      2. Text properties
    10. Animating Source Text
    11. Using Text Animation Presets
    12. Understanding Animator Groups
      1. Animator properties
      2. Range selectors
    13. Animating Type with Animator Groups
    14. Creating Animator Groups
    15. Choosing Animator Group Properties
    16. Choosing a Range Selector
      1. Range
      2. Wiggly
      3. Expression
    17. Specifying a Range
    18. Understanding Range Selector Options
      1. Shape
      2. Other range options
    19. Using Multiple Selectors and Selector Modes
    20. Specifying Wiggly Selector Options
  15. 13. Painting on a Layer
    1. Using the Paint and Brush Tips Panels
    2. Specifying Paint Stroke Options
      1. Opacity and Flow
      2. Brush tip
      3. Color
      4. Mode
      5. Channels
      6. Duration
    3. Painting with the Brush Tool
    4. Erasing Strokes
    5. Using Brush Tips
    6. Customizing Brush Tips
    7. Using Brush Dynamics
    8. Adjusting Strokes
      1. Strokes in the timeline
      2. Selecting strokes
      3. Multiple Paint effects
    9. Animating Strokes
    10. Cloning
      1. Setting the sample point for cloning
      2. The Aligned option
      3. The Lock Source Time option
    11. Using the Clone Stamp Tool
    12. Overlaying the Clone Source
    13. Saving Clone Stamp Settings
  16. 14. More Layer Techniques
    1. Using Frame Blending
    2. Using Motion Blur
    3. Understanding Time Remapping
    4. Controlling Time Remap Values in the Layer Panel
    5. Using Time Remapping
    6. Using Blending Modes
    7. Blending Mode Types
      1. Transparency modes
      2. Brightness-reducing modes
      3. Brightness-enhancing modes
      4. Combination modes
      5. Difference and exclusion modes
      6. Chrominance-based modes
      7. Stencil and silhouette modes
      8. Alpha-manipulation modes
    8. Preserving Underlying Transparency
    9. Track Mattes
      1. Types of track mattes
  17. 15. 3D Layers
    1. Using 3D
    2. Viewing 3D Layers in the Comp Panel
    3. Adjusting Views with Camera Tools
    4. Using Comp Panel Layouts
    5. Using Axis Modes
    6. Using 3D Position
    7. Using 3D Orientation and Rotation
    8. Auto-Orienting 3D Layers
    9. Using 3D Material Options
    10. Using Cameras
    11. Choosing Camera Settings
    12. Using Lights
    13. Choosing Light Settings
    14. Using the Point of Interest
    15. Moving Cameras with Camera Tools
    16. Previewing 3D
    17. Understanding 3D Layer Order
      1. Combining 2D and 3D
  18. 16. Complex Projects
    1. Nesting
    2. Rendering Order
    3. Subverting the Render Order
      1. Transform Effect
      2. Adjustment Layer
      3. Nesting or Precomposing
      4. Expressions
    4. Synchronizing Time
    5. Using the Flowchart View
    6. Precomposing
    7. Collapsing Transformations
    8. Setting Recursive Switches
    9. Prerendering
    10. Parenting Layers
      1. Jumping
    11. Using Null Objects
    12. Specifying Guide Layers
    13. Using Expressions
    14. Viewing Expressions
    15. Using the Expression Language Menu
    16. Writing Expressions
      1. Expression Lexicon
      2. Translating a Simple Expression
      3. Expression Syntax
  19. 17. Output
    1. The Render Queue Panel
      1. Rendering progress
      2. Rendering settings
      3. Panel headings and Render Status
    2. Making a Movie
    3. Using the Render Queue Panel
    4. Pausing and Stopping Rendering
    5. Assigning Multiple Output Modules
    6. Choosing Render Settings
    7. Choosing Output-Module Settings
    8. Creating Templates
    9. Saving Single Frames of a Composition
    10. Exporting to SWF Format
    11. Setting Overflow Volumes
    12. Movie Files and Compression
    13. Using the Adobe Media Encoder
  20. Digital Video for All
    1. Getting Started
    2. Beyond the Basics
    3. In Depth Reference
    4. Technique & Inspiration