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The best thing you can do is to stop treating AE like it's just another application you can use intuitively, and then buckle down and learn the basics... without which, you will become hopelessly lost. Come to think of it, that's where you are right now.
Blow it off at your peril.
But to answer your immediate question, here's another question: do you have your Caps Lock key toggled on?
My caps was off. Thank you for the link to the basic tutorials i will give them a look however i did not originally have this issue. I created and renderd one project and closed AE then later when i opend it again this issue occured i've already whatched a few tutorial and non of them point in the direction of a solution. With all this in mind is there anything that might spring to mind?
also when i made my first project if i wanted to bring up a picture in the composition view i could drag it over the veiwer and a white outline with a triangle at the bottom if i remember correctly would appear as to say i can drop it into the view and if i did it would appear in the viewer. Now with this current issue this outline and triangle does not show up but an outline of the the square thumbnail of the image and a rectangle around where the name of the image would be gets dragged to the comosition viewer and if i drop it in. it remains black
Can we see a screenshot?
I'm especially interested in the buttons and dropdowns at the bottom of your composition window. (Specifically, what camera or view you're looking through.)