5 Replies Latest reply on Apr 24, 2013 12:20 PM by Rick Gerard

    Mattes in AE




      I seem to have trouble grasping the concept of trackmattes in AE, and I was hoping you guys could help clear up some issues for me.


      I've created a "text wheel,"  where different words rotate and bounce in every few seconds.  When a specific word comes into view, I would like the color of the word to change from grey to black.  Would masking be the best way to accomplish this feat?  Here are a few screenshots:



      the word "media" is grey, and once it rotates into the mask, I would like it to be black



        • 1. Re: Mattes in AE
          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          There are a couple of ways to go about this. Assuming your text wheel is a bunch of text layers in a pre-comp you could duplicate your text wheel Pre-comp in the Project panel, open the duplicate and change the character color to black, nest the black pre-comp and then simply mask the black layer.


          Another way would be to add an Adjustment Layer above your text wheel, mask the adjustment layer, and then use something like change color to change the gray to black.


          Another way would be to add a black solid to the comp, mask the black solid and then use the Text Wheel as track matte for the black solid. You would then add a duplicate of the Text Wheel on the bottom.


          There are at least a dozen other options. Here's a project file with the three solutions for you to look at.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Mattes in AE
            Fyin.com Level 1

            The effect that I am looking to emmulate can be found in this link at :30 seconds:



            • 3. Re: Mattes in AE
              Fyin.com Level 1

              Thanks Rick.  Project files really appreciated.

              • 4. Re: Mattes in AE
                Fyin.com Level 1

                could you explain the -index expression you used for the text layers?

                • 5. Re: Mattes in AE
                  Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  In expression language "index" is the number of the layer starting from the top.


                  I wanted to make each duplicate layer rotate 30º counter clockwise so I simply add a minus sign to the index and multiplied that by 30. Layer 1 then rotates -1 * 30. Layer 2 rotates -2 * 30, and so on.


                  To set up the wheel I created the first text layer, offset the anchor point to the right and at the center of the text then added the expression  -value*30 to the rotation property. Each time I duplicated a layer it rotated another -30º. I then created a null, moved it to the anchor point of the text layers and made it the parent. This gives me an easy way to rotate the wheel as a group. Total time required to set up the wheel was about a minute.