Select the property, the mask, you want to duplicate and press Cmnd/Ctrl + d
This is the standard duplicate shortcut for After Effects and it work on layers or anything else that can be duplicated.
If you have to masks all you have to do to rename any one of them or any other property that you can select is to select the property and press the enter key. There is a bug in CC 2015 that requires you to press the delete key twice when you rename something to avoid throwing an additional line return or line feed in front of the new name. If you are using the version with the bug renaming still works, you just need to press the delete key twice before you type.
If you cannot select the property it may be locked or you may have some other problem that can only be diagnosed with a complete description of the workflow, OS and AE version down to the last decimal point and a screenshot with the modified properties of the layer or layers giving you problems revealed by pressing the u key twice. Just print screen and paste to the forum or Shift+Ctrl/Cmnd + 3 and drag from the desktop if you are on a Mac.
BTW the link to the tutorial is completely broken. I'm getting a server not found error.
I'll give these a shot and report back. Thank you!
I had high hopes, but it didn't work. Oddly enough, it also didn't work on the Mac, either.
I used snagit to make a video capture of the process: After effects demo - YouTube
The original video tutorial I was following is here: Pull focus for cinematic depth of field - YouTube
The AE version is 184.108.40.206. It's Windows. Not sure what the workflow means. I'm very new to this. I've been editing a video in Premiere Pro, and am really only using this because it doesn't seem to be able be done in PP. Thanks!
You are way overthinking this. You rename everything in After Effects by selecting the property then pressing the enter or return key. This is really basic stuff covered in the very first couple of tutorials on the AE product page.
You cannot rename something by double clicking or anything else fancy, you just press the enter key which select all of the name of the lawyer or the mask, then you type in the new name. If you happen to be using a version of AEE that has the bug you need to press the delete key twice before you start typing the new name.
Thank you for your assistance. It worked.