I know how to use the shatter effect. When I try to use it for the individual triangles (each their own layer) making up the word, the entire word shatters, but I want the triangles to shatter, or explode, independently. I'm new to After Effects by the way. I dragged each layer into the composition. I tried to do an adjustment layer above the layers, but that did not work. I tried to parent all the layer beneath the upmost layer to the top layer and used the shatter effect on that layer, but that didn't work. Right now, I have the multiple layers precomposed so that all of the layers can be affected. I don't know if it's the shatter tool that I even need, but I just want the triangles to fly away from each other, and moving each of their positions would be time consuming (Monday project deadline). The file is below. Thank you.
You cannot use an adjustment layer. You must apply shatter to every layer you want to explode and then animate force one to control when each layer explodes.
I suggest that you type "shatter" into the search help field at the top right corner of the app and go through some training on the effect. It's difficult if not impossible to figure out that effect without some training.
If you want to move all layers individually in a random direction, you can apply a wiggle expression to all of them, set its frequency to 0 and link the amplitude of the wiggle to a slider control.
If you then keyframe the slider to go from some very high value to 0, the triangles will move from a random position to their desired target position.
You can apply the same expression also to the rotation, the triangles will also rotate randomly.
This tutorial show how to use the wiggle iExpression: