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Working smarter: Navigating the Timeline

From: After Effects CC Essential Training

Video: Working smarter: Navigating the Timeline

In this video, we're going to go over some key commands you can use to quickly navigate up and down your timeline. Now, I'm not talking about up and down the layers, I'm literally talking about up and down in time in your timeline. So, to get started, let's actually go ahead and select Layer 6. I'm going to press 6 on my keypad. Now, with Layer 6 selected, I want to see any keyframes that have been applied to that layer. So, I'm going to press the U key. Now if you see keyframes in a layer, you can go ahead and navigate between those keyframes just by pressing the J key to move earlier in your timeline. Or press K to move down in your timeline.

Working smarter: Navigating the Timeline

In this video, we're going to go over some key commands you can use to quickly navigate up and down your timeline. Now, I'm not talking about up and down the layers, I'm literally talking about up and down in time in your timeline. So, to get started, let's actually go ahead and select Layer 6. I'm going to press 6 on my keypad. Now, with Layer 6 selected, I want to see any keyframes that have been applied to that layer. So, I'm going to press the U key. Now if you see keyframes in a layer, you can go ahead and navigate between those keyframes just by pressing the J key to move earlier in your timeline. Or press K to move down in your timeline.

Now if you want to quickly move to the beginning or the end of a layer, you can press I to move to the beginning and O to move to the end of the layer. Now, I'm going to press J twice to move back to a couple keyframes here. If you want to trim the start point of a layer you can hold down the Option key on Mac or Alt on Windows, and then press the Left Bracket key which is right next to the P key. I'm just going to undo that. If you want to trim the out point of a layer, it's the same sort of function just with the Right Bracket key. So again, Option on Mac, Alt on Windows, and then the Right Bracket key. I'll just go ahead and undo that command as well. Now if I select Layer 7 just by pressing 7 on my keypad, and then, I press U again to open up the keyframe parameters for that layer. Notice when I press J to move up in the timeline, I'm still moving across key frames, across multiple layers.

So it doesn't necessarily matter when you press K or J. Whether or not you have that layer selected, it'll just move to the next grouping of animated parameters. Now, if I want to select all the layers in the timeline, I can press Command+A on the Mac, and Control+A on the Mac. Now if I press U it'll quickly expand all those layers. If I press the Tilde key, I can maximize any panel that I currently have selected. Since I have the project panel selected it magnified that. So let's go ahead and make sure we have the timeline selected and we'll press the tilde key. Now I can quickly and easily see everything that's been animated in my project.

If I need to zoom in to the area where my current time indicator is placed, I can use the Plus key which is up near my Delete key. Each time I tap it'll increase the magnification. And, of course, if I want to zoom back out I can press the Minus key. Now, as I'm working, if I want to reset my work area, I can press B for the beginning of that work area. Then, I'll press K, to just move down the timeline in time. Notice as I'm clicking through, I'm literally moving from keyframe to keyframe.

Since I have all my key frames available, it's taking a while to move down the timeline. Now, if I want to set my work area out point I can press N. Now, if I want to jump directly to the start of the work area, I'll press Shift and Home. I can press Shift and End to jump to the end of the work area. Now, if I press Home without Shift, it'll just move to the beginning of the timeline. Then I can press B to reset the start of my work area. And if I press End, then I can go ahead and press N, as in Nancy, to reset my work area that way.

Now, what if I want to jump to a specific point in time? I can do that by pressing Alt+Shift on Windows or Option+Shift on the Mac. And then you can hold down the J key. When I do that, it'll open the Go To Time dialog box. So here, I can type 500 if I want to jump to five seconds. So it's shift+option or Shift+Alt and the J key, again. If I want to go to frame 2:12, I can type that in and boom. My current time indicator is automatically going to move there. Now if you need to move frame by frame through an animation, I'm going to press the Tilde key just to get back so we can see our composition again. And I'll click off any of the layers to deselect. Now if you want to move your current time indicator forwards in time or backwards in time you can press Page Up or Page Down.

Now, if you don't have a full-sized keyboard and you want to move forwards and backwards by single frames, you can use the Command Key and Right Arrow or Left Arrow. On Windows, it would be Control+Right Arrow and Left Arrow. If you want to move 10 frames at a time, just add Shift to that, then you'll be moving 10 frames at a time up and down the timeline. Now that concludes our keyboard shortcuts we can use to navigate through our timeline.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for After Effects CC Essential Training
After Effects CC Essential Training

110 video lessons · 50928 viewers

Ian Robinson
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 1m 8s
    1. What is After Effects?
      1m 8s
  2. 30m 55s
    1. Welcome
      1m 11s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 19s
    3. Relinking missing footage
      1m 54s
    4. Working with keyboard shortcuts
      1m 23s
    5. Updating After Effects with Creative Cloud
      1m 25s
    6. Different ways to use After Effects
      59s
    7. Exploring the interface of After Effects
      12m 0s
    8. Exploring important preferences and setting up the cache
      6m 20s
    9. Video terminology
      4m 24s
  3. 1h 0m
    1. The six foundations of After Effects
      11m 5s
    2. Understanding compositions
      10m 35s
    3. Creating and manipulating layers
      9m 49s
    4. Building animation
      6m 29s
    5. Working with effects
      7m 5s
    6. Introduction to 3D
      8m 45s
    7. Understanding how to render
      6m 48s
  4. 38m 54s
    1. Importing elements
      5m 53s
    2. Organizing projects
      3m 51s
    3. Building compositions with layers
      6m 17s
    4. Animating with keyframes
      10m 0s
    5. Adding effects and graphics
      8m 7s
    6. Output techniques
      4m 46s
  5. 44m 49s
    1. Exploring composition and project settings
      6m 48s
    2. Importing Photoshop files as compositions
      8m 39s
    3. Importing Illustrator files as compositions
      7m 41s
    4. Viewing files in the comp panel
      4m 42s
    5. Understanding Pre-compose
      4m 21s
    6. Positioning layers with snapping
      4m 55s
    7. Interpreting footage
      4m 0s
    8. Keyboard shortcuts for compositions
      3m 43s
  6. 1h 5m
    1. Defining layers
      5m 4s
    2. Creating type layers
      7m 38s
    3. Precise typesetting techniques
      5m 42s
    4. Creating layer solids and shapes with masks
      9m 6s
    5. Creating design elements with shape layers
      6m 10s
    6. Layer compositing: Masks, switches, and blend modes
      7m 35s
    7. Using track mattes
      4m 49s
    8. Precise compositing with variable-width feathered masks
      9m 24s
    9. Working smarter by swapping layers
      7m 6s
    10. Keyboard shortcuts for layers
      2m 35s
  7. 1h 27m
    1. Understanding animation
      6m 20s
    2. Adding and adjusting keyframes
      9m 52s
    3. Understanding keyframe interpolation
      6m 20s
    4. Adjusting keyframes in the Graph Editor
      8m 26s
    5. The power of parenting
      5m 26s
    6. Using null objects
      6m 46s
    7. Creating expressions with the pick whip
      6m 25s
    8. Creating and adjusting motion paths
      9m 56s
    9. Building complex graphics with Pre-compose
      4m 54s
    10. Preparing audio for animation
      8m 57s
    11. Generating graphics with audio
      9m 13s
    12. Working smarter: Navigating the Timeline
      4m 32s
  8. 58m 59s
    1. Understanding the order of effects
      5m 58s
    2. Generating backgrounds with effects
      5m 33s
    3. Generating a scribble effect
      8m 12s
    4. Animating strokes with effects
      6m 37s
    5. Using adjustment layers
      5m 52s
    6. Adding gradients and glows
      4m 30s
    7. Saving pan and scan presets
      5m 20s
    8. Fixing exposure with Levels
      3m 5s
    9. Fixing color casts with Color Finesse 3
      9m 57s
    10. Masking individual effects
      3m 55s
  9. 55m 24s
    1. Understanding 3D in After Effects
      9m 2s
    2. Intro to cameras
      7m 51s
    3. Intro to lights and material options
      8m 56s
    4. Animating cameras
      12m 39s
    5. Creating depth of field
      6m 48s
    6. Exploring the ray-traced 3D renderer
      10m 8s
  10. 1h 43m
    1. Understanding CINEMA 4D Lite and After Effects
      1m 32s
    2. 3D foundations
      10m 43s
    3. Matching CINEMA 4D Lite and After Effects projects
      8m 9s
    4. Understanding the CINEMA 4D Lite interface
      7m 31s
    5. Creating 3D projects from Illustrator files
      7m 28s
    6. Exploring modeling in CINEMA 4D Lite
      8m 8s
    7. Applying deformers
      5m 59s
    8. Understanding materials
      7m 32s
    9. Lighting your scene
      8m 14s
    10. Looking at detailed materials
      7m 51s
    11. Animating in CINEMA 4D Lite
      6m 51s
    12. Animating cameras in CINEMA 4D Lite
      5m 45s
    13. Working with CINEWARE
      9m 38s
    14. Render settings and the multipass workflow
      8m 38s
  11. 23m 35s
    1. Rendering with Adobe Media Encoder
      4m 45s
    2. Recommended settings for rendering graphics
      10m 21s
    3. Creating presets in the Render Queue
      4m 0s
    4. Prerendering with Import and Replace Usage
      3m 18s
    5. Working smarter: One render, multiple outputs
      1m 11s
  12. 29m 3s
    1. Creating type animators
      8m 52s
    2. Creating and animating type on a path
      5m 32s
    3. Animating shape layers
      8m 45s
    4. Animating brushstrokes with Paint
      5m 54s
  13. 23m 31s
    1. Retiming with Time Remapping
      8m 56s
    2. Retiming footage with Timewarp
      9m 10s
    3. Smoothing shaky camera footage with Warp Stabilizer VFX
      5m 25s
  14. 16m 6s
    1. Getting started with Keylight
      8m 43s
    2. Refining your key with Keylight
      3m 42s
    3. Cleaning up keys with masks
      3m 41s
  15. 26m 47s
    1. Rotoscoping with paths
      6m 47s
    2. Introducing the Roto Brush
      5m 58s
    3. Refining the Roto Brush
      6m 12s
    4. Using the Refine Edge tool
      7m 50s
  16. 27m 13s
    1. Creating a single point track
      7m 38s
    2. Applying motion with Warp Stabilizer VFX
      4m 29s
    3. Warp Stabilizer VFX: Reversible Stabilization workflow
      7m 47s
    4. Solving cameras
      7m 19s
  17. 6m 30s
    1. Archiving your projects
      3m 50s
    2. Removing unused footage
      1m 25s
    3. Moving compositions between projects
      1m 15s
  18. 2m 24s
    1. What's next?
      2m 24s

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