Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
If you've ever created text layers in a Photoshop document or an Illustrator file, you're probably already familiar with how to create text inside of an After Effects composition. The process is pretty much exactly the same. So let's add some text into our project here, so we can explore some of the different options. So let's get started by adding some text to our composition. Press Cmd + T, or Ctrl + T on the PC, to automatically grab the text tool. Now with the Text tool selected in the Toolb panel, here in the upper left hand corner of your interface. Look a couple inches over to the right and you'll see that we have Auto Open panel selected.
And if we look to the lower right corner of the interface, you'll see we have a Characters panel. and a paragraph panel. Now obviously if we deselect this panels will no longer appear any time we grab the text tool. I sort of like this feature so I'm going to leave this selected. This button to the left of the selection box will toggle those panels on and off. So this is also another good way of quickly getting our text options. Now, when I'm setting a lot of text, what I prefer to do is change my workspace. So let's go over to the workspace pulldown, click on the word Standard, and change it to Text.
Now, in the text workspace, notice the character panel and the paragraph panel are much more easy to access, right here on the right side of our comp. So to add text to our comp, Move your mouse just a little bit under the letter T in dedication, and click. And you'll notice I'll get this line. The line is letting me know that I can edit the word dedication. This happens quite a lot when you're trying to lay text right next to each other. So an easy way to fix this is to select layer four, and then just enable the lock option.
So that way I can't select the layer in my time line Nor can I accidentally edit it here in the comp window. Now let's try this again. Go ahead and click. And I've automatically created a text layer. And all I need to do is just start typing to add a word. So let's add the word to find. To set type in your project, you can press enter on the keypard or. Grab the Selection tool out of your toolbar. Now, your text may look different that my text, and that's because After Effects will always remember the last settings you used whenever you add new type into your projects. With our text layer selected here I'm going to decrease the size down to around something like 60 and I'll press Enter to go ahead and set that information.Now we can click on the text layer and move it anywhere in the scene. Now the type of text that we've created is called point text and I know this because the anchor point down here is in the lower left corner. I'm having a hard time seeing exactly what's going on with my text so I'm going to increase my magnification by scrolling with my mouse. Now you can also middle-mouse click and holding down the middle-mouse button click and drag.
You can see I automatically grab my hand tool and that just repositioned my composition. Now these handles sometimes annoy people when they’re trying to preview type and you can turn those off pretty quickly by going up to the view options in the comp window. So if you go to the upper right corner of the comp window, click on this little dashed icon with a triangle to the left. And go to view options. Under the view options, let's disable handles. Now when we click OK. I won't see the handles even though layer one is selected. This is great but it's really important that you don't forget that you turned that off because it will stay off any time you continue working on the project and sometimes if you forget It can be kind of scary. So with the text layer selected, let's preview some different typefaces. In the upper-right side of the character panel I'm just going to make sure Helvetica is entirely selected.
As long as the text layer is completely selected in our character panel you can then use the up and down arrows to scroll through the different typefaces that you have installed on your system. Now obviously my system may have more fonts then yours. So dont panic if you have different type faces popping up. You can also click on the pull down arrow and jump dirrectly to a specific type face if you want to choose something specific. So I'll choose Helvetica New. The first option up here allows us to make adjustments to the font family and the option down below allows us to make adjustments to the font style. If you press tab on your keyboard you can automatically jump down to the font style and again use the up and down arrows to choose different type faces. One thing that I do recommend if you are setting type for use in video you don't want to use a really thin type face because sometimes that'll break up when the video is compressed.
Especially if its going to the web or standard definition. So I'm not going to choose to ultra light italic, I'm going to leave mine set to just italic. Even that is a little questionable as to how clean it's going to reproduce. But for now I think this kind of works. So that's creating point type. Now before I move on to showing you paragraph type, I want to draw your attention to the upper right corner of the character panel. See how I have a fill option for this big white square? Well, this black Outline square below it will actually allow me to create a stroke and there is a stroke currently on this text, but the stroke width is kind of small and the fill is set to be over the stroke. So let's increase this number to 10 pixels. Now I can clearly see the outline this way when I click on fill overstroke You'll see more clearly how adjusting the stroke over the fill for the fill over the stroke will change how that text appears.
I'll leave this text like this because I actually think it looks kind of cool. But before we jump into paragraph type, I want to go back to the upper right corner of the comp window and make sure we go to our View Options and reenable our handles. Now let's click OK. Let's zoom back out in the comp window so I have a little bit more space to work with. I'm going to scroll with my mouse. And again, middle mouse click and drag just to kind of reframe the scene. Okay, to create paragraph text, you can grab the text tool and then click and drag in the canvas.
And anywhere that I drag, the text will create a box. I can quickly and easily add some text just by typing. And that's obliviously a bunch of gibberish, but you'll notice the text only stays inside of that bounding box. I can re-size that box, and notice it's not distorrting the text it's just filling in more letters since I continued to type. So, this is a great way of creating things like credit scrolls, or creating large blocks of type. Now, another thing you can adjust with Paragraph Type that you can't adjust with Point Type Is justification.
On our system here, we have Justify All set up and that's why the text is going all the way from one side to another. I'm going to grab my selection tool here just to kind of set my text, but let's change the justification to left aligned. And here, you'll notice now, it's only aligned the left side of my text. Now, if you found some of these text options interesting, I want to let you know that we definitely have dedicated an entire chapter to animating and manipulating text.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
110 Video lessons · 51366 Viewers
86 Video lessons · 14673 Viewers
79 Video lessons · 15365 Viewers
350 Video lessons · 101546 Viewers
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.
Your file was successfully uploaded.