Join Owen Lowery for an in-depth discussion in this video Using Time Remap to loop animation precomp, part of Motion Graphics Loops: 2 After Effects Techniques.
- [Voiceover] I'm here in chapter four zero one, looping comps with time remap and I'd like to remind everyone that there are many more layers in this comp that you can't see because I've locked them off and hidden them with the shy guy, all of which we will not be working with. I did , however, leave the conga bean layer visible and locked off because even though I'm not going to mess with it, I can't deny conga bean its time dancin' in the spotlight. And also because I created a marker, letting me know exactly where to loop my elements on that layer.
So in this animation, we have an infinite number of conga beans jumping and bouncing off the coffee creamers and I want that creamer splash back right there to splash every time the bean bounces off it. So I'll go ahead and pause playback here by hitting the spacebar. I'm gonna hit command A to select all of my layers. I'm gonna hit U on my keyboard, so I can see everything with animation on it and this way I can get an idea of everything that needs to be looped and, oh boy.
Here we have several different layers with lots and lots of different sorts of animation and lots of key frames applied to lots of different properties. I have two single-serving coffee creamers with rotation position key frames on them. I also have animation on the transform controls of two separate shape layers, each containing five separate animation shape paths, along with each of those shape paths having animation on its very own trim pass value.
That's a lot of different variables to loop. I mean, some I can loop using the loop expression. And some I'll need to use the value at time expression workaround. I mean, talk about headachesville. There has got to be a better way and you know what, why would I even bring this up if there wasn't. Alright, I'm gonna show you a great time-saving workaround to loop multiple layers all together with minimal effort, using the time remap. I'll go over here and twirl closed all of my layers. I just need to make sure that all of these layers that I'm going to loop are selected.
I'll now go ahead and right click or control click on these layers and select the precompose. Alright, I'm gonna rename this creamer bounce loop precomp. Just so I know it's a precomp and just so I know what's going on here. I'll click okay. And this is saving my precomposition here in my chapter four folder. Notice that all four of those layers have now disappeared into one single layer, which is the creamer bounce loop precomp.
Let's go ahead up to this layer in chapter four. And I'm gonna go ahead and just drag it into my assets folder and click and drop it into my animation precomps folder. Just so it's out of the way and it's still in my composition, so no big deal. Now, what I need to do is take this single layer that I made out of all of these four layers and loop it. What I'll do is go to layer time and enable time remap. So I'm gonna actually the time remap to loop this new layer.
I'm gonna move over to right where that says loop here on my marker on the layer above it. And I'm gonna come over here to where this key frame, add or remove key frame at current time is, click on it, add key frame. I'll then go to the last key frame in this timeline, just click and drag and delete that. So now the only key frames I have are these two key frames. What's going on here is that I just made a new key frame based on the time code of this precomp.
And since everything is within this precomp, everything within it is based on this time code. So now, all I have to do is add a simple looping expression to the time remap, and we're good to go. I'm gonna hold down option and click on this little stopwatch here to enable expressions. I'm gonna type in loop, capitol O U T. Open parentheses and close parentheses. So this is gonna be the default loop out expression, and when I click off of it and hit the space bar to preview let's give it a little bit time to load up.
And there we go! Every single time that the coffee bean bounces off, we got the coffee creamer splash back and a little bit of that moving and rotating coffee creamers without having to add loop expressions to every single one of those values, so yeah, we just saved ourselves a lot of time. This is a really popular and simple method for creating simple loops from complex animations. And you can use it for things like character walk cycles or entirely animated scenes. It's pretty fantastic.
- Working with loop expressions
- Looping mash and shape paths
- Combining expressions
- Looping footage with Time Remap
- Looping with effects
- Rendering loops as animated GIFs