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Animated Character Design with Illustrator
Illustration by John Hersey

Options for saving files


From:

Animated Character Design with Illustrator

with Angie Taylor

Video: Options for saving files

When you're saving your final file for animation in After Effects, it's fairly straight forward. Really, you just want to go to File > Save As, and save as a regular Illustrator file. I'm going to just save it into this folder here, the Saving and Exporting folder, I'll call it Save Export End. Okay? And if we save it as an Illustrator file, that's going to maintain all the layers, and all of that will be supported when you go into After Effects.

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Animated Character Design with Illustrator
2h 33m Intermediate Jan 14, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

This workshop from author and animator Angie Taylor teaches how to use Illustrator's tools and features to prepare 2D files for animation in Adobe After Effects. Discover how to make the most of Illustrator's drawing tools and Autotrace feature, and to how use Live Paint and Kuler to recolor artwork. Plus, get a ton of tips and tricks for giving artwork a hand-drawn look and find out how to set up layers, aspect ratios, and transparency options for importing into After Effects. The lessons are focused and solution-oriented, and all the project files are included.

Topics include:
  • Setting up the work area
  • Bringing artwork into Illustrator
  • Tracing artwork manually
  • Creating complex shapes
  • Working with paths
  • Using Live Trace
  • Coloring artwork
  • Applying 3D effects
  • Exporting artboards
  • Options for saving files
Subjects:
3D + Animation Design Illustration Character Animation video2brain
Software:
Illustrator
Author:
Angie Taylor

Options for saving files

When you're saving your final file for animation in After Effects, it's fairly straight forward. Really, you just want to go to File > Save As, and save as a regular Illustrator file. I'm going to just save it into this folder here, the Saving and Exporting folder, I'll call it Save Export End. Okay? And if we save it as an Illustrator file, that's going to maintain all the layers, and all of that will be supported when you go into After Effects.

Now, other formats that would be supported would be Illustrator EPS. You could also save that as that. And there are also various other export options that you can use. But really, to animate in After Effects, you best save as an Illustrator file. When you click Save, you'll be presented with the Illustrator Options dialog box, where you can choose various features. Now, what I tend to do is, if I know that someone is going to be editing this file and they don't have Illustrator CS5, I sometimes save it as a backward compatible file. And in fact, all the files for this lesson are saved as Illustrator CS4 files so that people that have CS4 can still open the files and have a look at them and through most of the exercises.

Okay, you can create a PDF compatible file as well, which can be opened in Acrobat and can also be edited Illustrator. And you can also choose whether or not you want to use Compression, I'm going to remove that and click OK. Okay, now it gives you a warning. It says, saving to legacy format may cause some changes to your text layout and disable some editing features when the document is read back in, do you want to continue? I am not going to worry about that because I know that all the features that I need to use are in CS4 as well, so I'm going to click OK. Now, the only thing you may notice is, I've forgotten to change the Art Board setting on this file.

So very important. Just before you save it, just double-click the Art Board tool and make sure you have it setup to the correct size. I'm going to choose DVC PRO HD1080, and that's going to create that size of Art Board for me. And also, I'll say, Show Center Mark, Show Cross Areas, Show Video Safe Areas, and click OK. And if we zoom out, we should see our character in the middle of Art Board, which will be the right size when we go into After Effects.

So, I'm just going to save that once more. And there we are, ready to go. Again, we're getting that warning coming up, so you can select Don't Show Again, and that way it won't appear every time you save. Now, this was originally designed for print, and you can see the page tiling is still on. You don't need to worry too much about that, that's not going to show up in After Effects. But if you want to remove it, you can just go down here and you can say, Hide Print Styling, and that's going to remove that for you and we can save that again. Okay, so that's how to save your multi-layered file ready to animated in Adobe After Effects.

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