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Applying effects

From: After Effects CS5 Essential Training

Video: Applying effects

We're going to be continuing where we left off here in the last movie with the Solid and actually kind of screw with the solid a little bit. So, let's go ahead and open up the layer and across from Transform, you'll see this Reset button, if you click that, it'll reset all of these values to their defaults. If you right-click on any property, anywhere, even the Effect Controls panel that we'll look at in just a moment. If you click Reset, it'll reset that value. So, go ahead for Transform, click Reset to reset everything back to the way it was. Now we're going to apply an effect.

Applying effects

We're going to be continuing where we left off here in the last movie with the Solid and actually kind of screw with the solid a little bit. So, let's go ahead and open up the layer and across from Transform, you'll see this Reset button, if you click that, it'll reset all of these values to their defaults. If you right-click on any property, anywhere, even the Effect Controls panel that we'll look at in just a moment. If you click Reset, it'll reset that value. So, go ahead for Transform, click Reset to reset everything back to the way it was. Now we're going to apply an effect.

Go to the Effects & Presets panel. If it's not showing, you can go to the Window menu and choose Effects & Presets. Open up the Generate category of Effects. At the top here, you'll see an effect called Beam. This is great for laser blasts and light sabers and that type of thing. We're going to be using it to demo what it is to apply an effect. Now there are a few ways to do this, kind of like importing a layer to your composition from the Project panel. I can click and drag on this effect to a layer in the Composition panel.

So, visually, I can do this. If you have a simple project like this, where's just one layer, then that's a great way to do it, and it's probably the fastest, because it's just right here. But if you have a project with many layers, sometimes that's a dangerous thing because you might be looking at a different layer and want to apply it to the layer that you think you are, but you applied to the wrong layer on accident, and that's not a good thing. You could also drag and drop it to the Composition panel and when the layer highlights, that's how you know that you are on the correct layer, and it will apply to that particular layer.

There's another way. This is how I like to apply effects. I select the layer that I want to apply the effect to, before going to the Effects & Presets panel. Then once I find the effect like Beam, I just double-click it, and it applies to the currently selected layer. Now in full disclosure, I should point out that there is an Effect menu at the top of the screen, and you could access these same effects over here through this menu. The problem with this is that you have to know which category every effect falls under. As you can see here, some of these categories have many, many, many effects, so you have to know your categories and know your effects. But in the Effects & Presets panel, there's the Search field.

So, I could just type in Beam. If I didn't know what it was, I could just type in bea, and by the time I get to bea, I really don't have to type the m, and it already comes up here as Beam. That's the only effect with B, E and A in a row. Make sure if you want to look for other effects after that, that you click this X to close out that search. Now, you'll notice here in the Composition panel that we have our Beam. The Blue Solid is completely gone. This is what I was talking about in the last movie is that sometimes, like with the Beam effect, it completely replaces the layer the effect is applied to.

So, now we just have a Beam, no hint of a Blue Solid whatsoever. Now, there are some common parameters here in Beam that we're going to see a lot through many effects that I want to explain to you. Some effects have what are called Effect Control points. We're seeing these here at the circles with the pluses inside of them. These mean that you can click and drag and manually move these wherever you would like them to be. So, if I want the beam to be coming from a turret down here - shooting up into outer space out here - I can just click and drag that.

Now you could see as I move this around that this Ending Point value is changing accordingly. So, we can move Effect Control points in three ways: one, we could just manually click and drag on it to where we wanted to be. Two, we could also use position. There's an X axis and a Y axis that we can adjust. And third, there's this little target here. This is the Effect Control point cross hairs. We can click that. Then we get these cross hairs, and we could manually click wherever we wanted to be. Now oftentimes, you'll have color swatches, such as Inside Color and Outside Color.

We can click on the color itself to get a dialog box, like we saw before, we can tweak the colors. We also have an eyedropper that we can click, and we can use this to sample colors from our project. As a matter of fact, we even sample colors from the After Effects interface, so that's what we wanted to do. It's just a really great eyedropper, like if we had another scene going on - maybe a cool background - and we wanted to change this color to match the background, we can use the eyedropper there. Now when I first apply this effect, it showed up automatically in the Effect Controls panel. But while you're working in After Effects, sometimes that panel might disappear.

I might go back to the Project panel and be working, and I might say, "Hey! Where are my Beam Effect Controls?" Well, the Beam Effect Controls are in Effect Controls panel. The keyboard shortcut for this panel is F3 on your keyboard. You could also go to the Window menu as well and choose Effect Controls, but it's down here below this line, not up here with the Effects & Preset panel. So, again, don't be confused. We apply effects in the Effects & Presents panel. We adjust them once they've been applied from the Effect Controls panel, usually on the left-hand side.

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This video is part of

Image for After Effects CS5 Essential Training
After Effects CS5 Essential Training

111 video lessons · 68783 viewers

Chad Perkins
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 5m 40s
    1. Introduction
      1m 30s
    2. What is After Effects?
      3m 12s
    3. How to use the exercise files
      58s
  2. 28m 14s
    1. After Effects workflow overview
      2m 18s
    2. Bringing elements into After Effects
      2m 23s
    3. Adding elements to the Timeline
      1m 57s
    4. Working with layers
      3m 45s
    5. Creating animation with presets
      3m 24s
    6. Applying effects
      3m 34s
    7. Creating animation without presets
      5m 38s
    8. Previewing your work
      2m 46s
    9. Exporting content as a movie file
      2m 29s
  3. 27m 20s
    1. Touring the interface
      6m 2s
    2. How After Effects projects work
      4m 47s
    3. What is a composition?
      4m 52s
    4. Tips for adding content to compositions
      2m 49s
    5. Understanding the properties of video
      8m 50s
  4. 57m 8s
    1. Importing an Illustrator file
      4m 57s
    2. Animation basics
      7m 12s
    3. Animating opacity
      6m 40s
    4. Understanding anchor points
      4m 57s
    5. Animating position
      6m 8s
    6. Animating rotation
      4m 41s
    7. Animating scale
      7m 19s
    8. Using the Puppet tool
      7m 13s
    9. Copying and pasting keyframes
      3m 4s
    10. Animation shortcuts
      4m 57s
  5. 9m 42s
    1. Understanding precomposing
      6m 51s
    2. Navigating through compositions quickly
      2m 51s
  6. 1h 12m
    1. A showcase of effects
      2m 34s
    2. Creating a layer for effects
      3m 1s
    3. Applying effects
      4m 54s
    4. Animating effect properties
      4m 29s
    5. Using Glow
      5m 34s
    6. Creating patterns and textures
      6m 57s
    7. Creating a fireball
      7m 9s
    8. Using the Cycore effects
      5m 58s
    9. Adding blur
      5m 45s
    10. Creating a galaxy scene from scratch
      8m 38s
    11. Distorting objects with effects
      4m 7s
    12. Creating and using lens flares
      4m 21s
    13. Creating lightning bolts
      4m 3s
    14. Viewing random variations with Brainstorm
      4m 39s
  7. 30m 52s
    1. Shortening the duration of layers
      4m 23s
    2. Trimming in the Footage panel
      4m 14s
    3. Slowing and accelerating video speed
      7m 9s
    4. Applying video transitions between clips
      6m 7s
    5. Working with image sequences
      4m 47s
    6. Importing footage with an alpha channel
      4m 12s
  8. 36m 11s
    1. Brightening dark footage
      9m 12s
    2. Changing colors in footage
      6m 34s
    3. Creating cinematic color treatments
      8m 17s
    4. Creating a quick vignette
      3m 42s
    5. Colorizing black-and-white objects
      4m 50s
    6. Using adjustment layers
      3m 36s
  9. 21m 9s
    1. Creating and editing text
      7m 39s
    2. Applying text animation presets
      4m 41s
    3. Animating text manually
      4m 43s
    4. Applying layer styles to text
      4m 6s
  10. 28m 58s
    1. Let's get better
      37s
    2. Using work areas
      3m 37s
    3. Creating markers
      6m 17s
    4. Replacing layers
      2m 35s
    5. Mastering Timeline navigation
      3m 18s
    6. Aligning and distributing layers
      3m 4s
    7. Selecting layers quickly
      1m 56s
    8. Cropping layers
      3m 43s
    9. Adjusting comp resolution
      3m 51s
  11. 23m 53s
    1. Using the paint tools
      9m 35s
    2. Using the Roto Brush tool
      9m 25s
    3. Animating growing vines
      4m 53s
  12. 40m 29s
    1. Creating and using masks
      6m 42s
    2. Exploring mask options
      7m 57s
    3. Creating masks with Auto-trace
      6m 51s
    4. Masking objects with other objects
      5m 33s
    5. Making shape layers
      3m 43s
    6. Modifying shape layers
      9m 43s
  13. 30m 44s
    1. Turning 2D layers into 3D layers
      9m 22s
    2. Creating lights and cameras
      6m 14s
    3. Creating shadows
      4m 23s
    4. Using depth of field
      4m 42s
    5. Working with 3D effects
      6m 3s
  14. 18m 10s
    1. Removing a green screen background
      4m 37s
    2. Refining the matte
      4m 48s
    3. Compositing with color adjustments
      4m 50s
    4. Compositing with blend modes
      3m 55s
  15. 25m 44s
    1. Understanding spatial interpolation
      2m 5s
    2. Creating and adjusting motion paths
      3m 55s
    3. Orienting moving objects along a path
      1m 29s
    4. Drawing motion with Motion Sketch
      2m 51s
    5. Creating pauses in animation
      3m 6s
    6. Understanding temporal interpolation
      1m 56s
    7. Easing keyframes
      5m 57s
    8. About the Graph Editor
      4m 25s
  16. 12m 13s
    1. Stabilizing shaky footage
      7m 46s
    2. Tracking the motion in footage
      4m 27s
  17. 24m 58s
    1. Setting up parent layers
      5m 49s
    2. Working with null objects
      2m 31s
    3. What are expressions?
      7m 17s
    4. Modifying simple expressions
      2m 20s
    5. Using the wiggle expression
      7m 1s
  18. 6m 52s
    1. Understanding audio in motion graphics
      1m 22s
    2. Previewing and mixing audio
      3m 55s
    3. Enhancing audio tracks with effects
      1m 35s
  19. 11m 36s
    1. Adding comps to the Render Queue
      2m 30s
    2. Exploring key Render Queue settings
      4m 11s
    3. How should I export my video?
      4m 55s
  20. 7m 16s
    1. Using Photoshop with After Effects
      2m 10s
    2. Using Illustrator with After Effects
      3m 2s
    3. Using Flash with After Effects
      2m 4s
  21. 11s
    1. Goodbye
      11s

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