After Effects Apprentice 04: Layer Control

with Chris Meyer and Trish Meyer
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After Effects Apprentice 04: Layer Control
Video duration: 0s 2h 40m Beginner Updated Nov 15, 2012


In this installment of After Effects Apprentice, Chris Meyer focuses on ways to edit and enhance layers in After Effects. Through a series of Quizzler challenges and Idea Corner examples, Chris shares alternative ways to employ modes, sequencing, and adjustment layers, while special sidebar movies cover the subjects of creating seamless loops, animating effects points, understanding pixel aspect ratios, and employing Brainstorm to explore the variety of different looks that effects can create. The course also covers tricks for enhancing boring footage and tips for converting scans into moving sequences. Exercise files are included with the course.

The After Effects Apprentice videos on 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 Online Training Library®.

Topics include:
  • Sliding and trimming
  • Slip-editing and insert-editing layers
  • Employing blending modes to enhance layers and composites
  • Applying, modifying, and saving animation presets and layer styles
  • Using adjustment layers to affect multiple layers
  • Experimenting with effects using Brainstorm
  • Understanding pixel aspect ratios
After Effects


- Hi, I'm Chris Meyer of Crish Design and welcome to After Effects Apprentice: Layer Control. Now in the Apprentice lessons on basic and advanced animation, we focused primarily on how to take a layer and move it around your composition stage. In essence, how to take a still image and bring it to life by keyframing its transform properties. However, a lot of your source footage already has animation built into it. It includes video footage, film frames, and other image sequences which may already fill your entire composition stage. Therefore, in this lesson, we're going to focus on how to manipulate and better combine those types of sources.

We're going to show you how to slide, edit, sequence, and trim layers. We're going to show you how to apply blending modes to them, which is a more effective way of mixing them together. We're going to show you how to apply effects, layer styles, and animation presets to further treat them, and how to use adjustment layers to apply the same treatment to multiple layers all at once. Of course, at the end, we'll give you a little bit of a brain teaser, just make sure you've been learning, and along the way, we're going to be sharing more technical advice as well animation advice to help you more effectively combine layers in your own project. So, let's start out by showing you how to go ahead and edit those layers.

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