9 Replies Latest reply on May 26, 2016 10:47 AM by Rick Gerard

    Transforming masks


      I am transforming a layer that I have had to paste an auto traced mask to but I don't want to change the size of the mask itself. The size of the mask needs to be a specific size because I am doing an audio react that I have mapped to the mask. Any ideas/thoughts/suggestions?

        • 1. Re: Transforming masks
          Shaneyshaneshane Level 1

          Can you precompose the layer, and leave the mask attributes on top of the precomp?  If that doesn't work, maybe copying the mask, precomposing the layer, and pasting the mask onto the precomp might work.  Good luck!

          • 2. Re: Transforming masks
            jaredm86741976 Level 1

            Unfortunately that transform is still affecting the pre comp either way I go

            • 3. Re: Transforming masks
              Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              You can always use your original mask layer as a track matte if you need to preserve the transparency generated by the mask.


              If you are using the mask as a source for another effect or as a compositing option for an effect then you will have to pre-compose your mask layer and all of the layers that use the effect driven or controlled been by the mask and then transform the pre-comp.


              More details about pre-composing/nesting, compositing options and using, editing and transforming masks can be found using the search help the field at the top right corner of After Effects. These are all basic AE skills you should know inside and out.

              • 4. Re: Transforming masks
                Shaneyshaneshane Level 1

                Sorry, I may not understand exactly what you're trying to do.  If you're trying to apply a transformation to a layer, (position, rotation, scale, etc.), that transformation should not effect the precomp.  The precomp is just a container.  If you have a mask that is applied to the precomp, it should just sit there.  Sorry again if i'm just not understanding. 

                • 5. Re: Transforming masks
                  jaredm86741976 Level 1

                  I may need to contact support for this because that's not really solving my issue

                  • 6. Re: Transforming masks
                    Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    Customer support is not really set up to handle workflow problems, they are better suited to installation, licensing, and incompatibility errors.  You would be lucky to find an experienced After Effects artist in the customer support department. Support for workflow comes from this forum and other forms dedicated to user support.


                    The very best way for us to help you is for you to include a detailed description of your workflow and screenshots of your entire composition with the modified properties of all the layers that are giving you trouble revealed. The forum makes it very easy to do. You just drag a screenshot into the reply field on this forum.


                    We can probably figure out the error in your workflow if you select the layer with the mask, then press the "u" key twice to reveal all the modified properties of that layer then send us a screenshot and an explanation of exactly what you are trying to do.   You are not asking AE to do anything it is not designed to do.

                    • 7. Re: Transforming masks
                      jaredm86741976 Level 1

                      Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 12.52.22 PM.png

                      So I have copied the mask to my new layer but as you can see my yellow mask is bigger than the mask area on my new layer. I am trying to make my mask fit in that area but when I go to change the size of the area it also changes the size of the mask. My issue is ultimately leading to this and it isn't nearly pulling off the effect as much as I want it to.

                      Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 1.00.45 PM.png

                      • 8. Re: Transforming masks
                        Shaneyshaneshane Level 1

                        How are you trying to change the size of the mask?  Have you double clicked on the mask outline and manually scale it?

                        • 9. Re: Transforming masks
                          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          The size of a mask always is related to the scale of the layer and calculated with the layer at 100%. Let me try and explain.


                          Say you have 2 layers. The first layer is called mask and the second is called video. The video layer is at it's default position rotation and scale. If you press the U key twice on this layer nothing shows up as being modified. You draw a mask on the Mask layer which is also at it's default position scale and rotation. When the mask is complete you decided that the mask is too large so you scale the layer.


                          Now you copy the mask and you paste it to the video layer. It comes in at the same size it was originally drawn.


                          The same thing would happen if you scaled the layer before you drew the mask. Let's say you scaled a layer to 25% and positioned it in the upper right corner of the comp. If you draw a mask on the scaled and re-positioned layer then paste it to your video layer the mask would be the same size and in the same position as it would be if you reset the transform properties of the mask layer and returned it to the center of the comp at 100% scale.


                          Does that make sense. Mask position and size are calculated on the size and shape of the layer and do not take into account the scale. If you are working with masks it's always a good idea to start out with the layer at the default position, scale and rotation so you will know what you are actually getting.