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After Effects Apprentice 13: Paint, Roto, and Puppet
Illustration by John Hersey

Using clone presets


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After Effects Apprentice 13: Paint, Roto, and Puppet

with Chris Meyer and Trish Meyer

Video: Using clone presets

I created a number of Clone strokes in the previous movie. I will select the Paint Effect, press Delete and that will get us back to the original image. In the previous movie, I was only using Clone Preset number 1. There are actually five Clone presets to choose from. The preset remembers all the values you have for the source layer that you are cloning from, whether the clone stroke is Aligned or not aligned, whether you lock the Source Time, and I will cover that later, as well as the Offset and the Source Time Shift.

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After Effects Apprentice 13: Paint, Roto, and Puppet
3h 11m Intermediate Dec 21, 2011 Updated Dec 12, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, Trish and Chris Meyer introduce a series of creative tools inside Adobe After Effects. The centerpiece is Paint, where Trish demonstrates how to use the Brush, Eraser, and Clone Stamp tools to draw on a layer, remove portions of it, or repeat elements around a composition. These tools can be used for artistic purposes as well as to repair problem areas in footage. Chris shows off the Puppet tools for distorting layers, and the incredible Roto Brush, introduced in After Effects CS6, which allows you to separately define foreground and background elements so that you can replace backgrounds and selectively add special effects.

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 library.

Topics include:
  • Creating, erasing, and animating brush and clone strokes
  • Using Paint to reveal a layer over time
  • Creating animated distortions to flat artwork with the Puppet tools
  • Replacing backgrounds with the Roto Brush
Subjects:
Video Motion Graphics Visual Effects
Software:
After Effects
Authors:
Chris Meyer Trish Meyer

Using clone presets

I created a number of Clone strokes in the previous movie. I will select the Paint Effect, press Delete and that will get us back to the original image. In the previous movie, I was only using Clone Preset number 1. There are actually five Clone presets to choose from. The preset remembers all the values you have for the source layer that you are cloning from, whether the clone stroke is Aligned or not aligned, whether you lock the Source Time, and I will cover that later, as well as the Offset and the Source Time Shift.

The presets don't remember the options you have set with the top part of the Paint panel. So these settings will apply to every preset. Also note that the value you set for the Clone Source Overlay will also apply to each of the presets. Now what can you use presets for? Well, let's say I would like to clone some of these items. Let's say there are stars or birds in the sky and so on, and I would like to have a preset for each object. I will turn off the switch for Aligned. That way, when I Option+click to set the origin of an object, and let's make my brush a little larger.

All I need to do now is click once, twice to repeat that particular element. I might like more of these later on. So I am going to leave preset number 1 saved with those settings, and I will go on to preset number 2. With this preset, I will also turn off the Aligned switch. Now I can Option+click on another element and add some of those around the frame. As you are working, if you get annoyed by the overlay always being attached to the cursor, let me show you a shortcut.

If I disable Clone Source Overlay, now as I move around the Layer panel, I no longer see the overlay. But if I press Option+Shift on Mac or Alt+Shift on Windows, it will pop up underneath the cursor. So this is a nice way to work. I find it's a little annoying to always have the overlay visible. So I am going to use that shortcut from now on. So I now have two presets programmed. FOr my third preset, I will also turn off Aligned. Let's pick another element, let's say, this little guy here.

At this point, I can simply use the shortcuts number 3, 4, and 5 on the regular keyboard to cycle between presets 1, 2, and 3. So when I press 3, I will get this shape, pressing 4 gives me this second preset and 5 gives me the third preset. So the presets can be very handy when you want to recall settings that you used earlier. In the next movie, we will cover animating the stroke as well as the rendering order.

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