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After Effects Apprentice 06: Type and Music
Illustration by John Hersey
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Browsing presets in Bridge


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After Effects Apprentice 06: Type and Music

with Chris Meyer and Trish Meyer

Video: Browsing presets in Bridge

The quickest way to apply a preset is to double-click the preset in the Effects and Presets panel. However, it does mean that you have to be somewhat familiar with each preset, especially when they have unusual names. If you'd like to preview what the presets look like before you apply them, you can use Adobe Bridge. To do that, first select your text layer. That's important. That way After Effects will know which layer to apply the preset to. Then under the Options menu for Effects and Presets, select Browse presets.
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  1. 3m 35s
    1. Overview
      1m 35s
    2. Using the exercise files
      2m 0s
  2. 14m 51s
    1. Setting up
      2m 20s
    2. Entering, editing, and styling type
      5m 49s
    3. Using strokes
      3m 6s
    4. Working with paragraph text
      3m 36s
  3. 23m 21s
    1. Setting a title
      2m 31s
    2. Creating a text animator
      6m 54s
    3. Selecting by character vs. percent
      3m 0s
    4. Animating position
      2m 4s
    5. Animating more properties
      3m 31s
    6. Exploring text transitions
      2m 47s
    7. Randomizing order
      2m 34s
  4. 22m 49s
    1. The Cascade recipe
      2m 15s
    2. Exploring offset plus selection shapes
      4m 16s
    3. Working with ramp selection shapes
      4m 26s
    4. Using character anchor points
      4m 40s
    5. Further refinements
      7m 12s
  5. 9m 0s
    1. Working with selections based on words
      4m 16s
    2. Anchor point grouping
      4m 44s
  6. 15m 46s
    1. Using a vertical blur treatment
      3m 58s
    2. Animated tracking
      5m 46s
    3. Working with text on a path
      6m 2s
  7. 14m 56s
    1. Per-character 3D overview
      5m 45s
    2. Enabling per-character 3D
      4m 4s
    3. Exploring per-character 3D rotation
      5m 7s
  8. 18m 37s
    1. Separating fields
      3m 48s
    2. Exploring wiggly options
      4m 28s
    3. Animating wiggles
      3m 18s
    4. Rendering with alpha channels
      7m 3s
  9. 45m 29s
    1. Adding audio
      4m 8s
    2. Audio levels
      4m 27s
    3. Spotting hit points
      5m 33s
    4. Timing to audio
      5m 25s
    5. Spotting dialogue
      7m 32s
    6. Timing dialogue to music
      6m 45s
    7. Mixing audio
      7m 53s
    8. Exploring audio refinements
      3m 46s
  10. 23m 9s
    1. Applying text presets
      5m 50s
    2. Browsing presets in Bridge
      4m 35s
    3. Editing presets
      6m 49s
    4. Saving presets
      5m 55s
  11. 16m 27s
    1. Working with Photoshop text
      4m 58s
    2. Keyframing source text
      4m 21s
    3. The Buzz Words preset
      7m 8s
  12. 20m 43s
    1. Exploring faux styling options
      7m 42s
    2. Tracking and kerning
      4m 56s
    3. Using smart quotes
      4m 8s
    4. Using hyphens and dashes
      3m 57s

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After Effects Apprentice 06: Type and Music
3h 48m Beginner Apr 28, 2011 Updated Nov 20, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

One of the cornerstones of motion graphics is creating and animating type. In this course, Trish Meyer shows how to typeset titles professionally and create custom animations, as well as apply and modify the hundreds of text animation presets that After Effects ships with. Additionally, Chris Meyer shows how to add audio to projects, including spotting "hit points" to align keyframes and video action.

The After Effects Apprentice videos on lynda.com were created by Trish and Chris Meyer and are designed to be used on their own and as a companion to their book After Effects Apprentice. We are honored to host these tutorials in the lynda.com Online Training Library®.

Topics include:
  • The core text animation recipes
  • Animating text along a path
  • Working with text animation presets
  • Timing animation to audio
  • Per-character 3D type
  • Rendering with an alpha channel
  • Making Photoshop type editable in After Effects
  • Professional typesetting tips
Subjects:
Video Motion Graphics Visual Effects
Software:
After Effects
Authors:
Chris Meyer Trish Meyer

Browsing presets in Bridge

The quickest way to apply a preset is to double-click the preset in the Effects and Presets panel. However, it does mean that you have to be somewhat familiar with each preset, especially when they have unusual names. If you'd like to preview what the presets look like before you apply them, you can use Adobe Bridge. To do that, first select your text layer. That's important. That way After Effects will know which layer to apply the preset to. Then under the Options menu for Effects and Presets, select Browse presets.

That will open Bridge, if it's not already open, and it will show you all of the presets that come bundled with the program, as well as any folders that you created for your own presets. Now, I'll be showing you later how to save presets. If I double-click Text, I can see all the subfolders that are inside. Now, I've mentioned that all of the animations in the 3D Text folder use Per-character 3D. The advantage of using Bridge is that when you select a preset, on the right-hand side, it shows you a preview of how it looks animating.

There is actually a lot of them to play with. If you're looking to learn more about Per-character 3D, this is the folder you should be exploring first. Usually, the name of the preset will tell you a little bit about what's going to happen. But I am going to go back to the main Text folder, open the Curves and Spin subfolder, and we'll preview a few of these. Some of these are a little wacky, but even if they are a little wacky, you can still learn a few things about using text animators just by examining how they are set up.

I'm going to select a specific animation because we'll be using it in the next example. The one I'm going to apply is called Counter Rotate. To apply it to my selected text layer in After Effects, all I need to do is double-click it in Bridge. After I apply the preset, I'll press U to see what keyframes are applied to the layer. It looks like they have two animators applied, but what I am really noticing is that the keyframes are appearing in the middle of my timeline. It's very important to remember that when you're applying presets, a lot of presets have keyframes attached and those keyframes will begin wherever the Current Time Indicator is parked.

So if you want the keyframes to start at the beginning of the comp, press Home before you start browsing in Bridge, so when you apply the preset, any keyframes will start at the beginning of the comp. By the way, it's very easy to make a mistake and have the Current Time Indicator at the end of the composition. If these keyframes were applied way back here, because that's where my Current Time Indicator was when I applied the preset, if I was to RAM preview, I wouldn't see any animation.

So the first thing to check is if nothing is happening is where is the Current Time Indicator? So if that happens to you, press Home to return to 0, press U to see any of the keyframes, and then you can select them, and you should be able to see the first keyframe, and you can just pull it back, press Shift, and it will snap to 0. Now, when you RAM preview, you can see what the preset is actually doing. Just to sum up, once you're familiar with these animations and you find some favorites that you use over and over, you'll probably find it easier to just apply it directly from the Effects and Presets panel.

But if you'd like to preview what these presets look like when they are animating, select the Options menu and browse the presets in Bridge, and then double-click to apply the preset to your selected layer. At this point, I may decide to preview more animation presets, but eventually I whittle it down to the one I like. So let's say this is the animation I'd like to keep. I'll turn off the Solo button, delete all the other duplicates that I don't need, and now I can work with the preset that I like the best.

In the next movie, I'll show you how to edit this preset, and we'll also make the timing work better with the music.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about After Effects Apprentice 06: Type and Music.


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Q: This course was updated on 11/20/2012. What changed?
A: We have added four new movies to the end of Chapter 8, "Working With Audio." All four of these movies (Spotting dialog, Timing dialog to music, Mixing audio, and Refinements) apply to all versions covered by the course. In addition, there are new sets of exercise files designed for After Effects CS5.5 and After Effects CS6 and a companion movie that shows our premium subscribers how to use the exercise files.
 
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