18 Replies Latest reply on Feb 20, 2018 5:20 PM by Kevin-Monahan

    2 point line (pen tool) bug

    toms47936273 Level 1

      I'm trying to create a simple line with the pen tool (shape layer). 2 points, straight up and down.
      For some reason after effects wont let me select this shape unless i select a random dot in the middle of the screen. As soon as I move one of these points over a bit so that the line is diagonal it seems to work fine. Same goes for if I curve one of the points. But If the line is straight (horizontal or vertical) after effects puts a random point in the centre of the screen. If i click on this point it removes my other anchor points.

       

      This has never been an issue for me in older versions of after effects. The same issue is happening to the person I work with.

       

      I cant seem to find any info on it.

        • 1. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
          Gutterfish Adobe Community Professional

          I have seen a post like this before but I cannot remember if it is  a known bug or not.

           

          I cannot duplicate the behavior exactly though.

          When I draw a two point line (straight) and center the anchor point I DO get the ghost dot at the center of the screen

          however I CAN select my line and move it around (the ghost dot moves with it) nothing happens if I click the ghost dot.

          The preceding is in AE 2017.

           

          In 2018 everything is the same for me except when I click on the ghost dot the path vanishes completely (both visually & also in the shape layer's attributes)

          and the ghost dot moves to where the anchor point was.

          • 2. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
            brianhorne8

            I just noticed this bug as well while trying to create a comp with a lot of straight lines. If I use the pen tool to make a 2 point straight line, I cannot use the move tool to highlight the line and move it. It has to be selected in the layer panel and then moved using either the anchor point or the arrow keys. However, if I make a line that's not perfectly straight, I can drag my move tool over it and see the path highlighted, as well as being able to click and drag the layer to move it as desired.

             

            Here's a quick video showing the issue:

            After Effects Path/Straight Line Bug - YouTube

             

            Hopefully Adobe can fix this, or hopefully it's something I'm just doing wrong. It's late and I could possibly be having one of those moments, but it seems like a bug...

            • 3. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
              Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Most likely cause of your problem is user error. You need to use the Alt/Option and Ctrl/Cmnd modifier keys to have access to all of the pen tool options and you need to pay careful attention to the cursor. This shows a mask path but the technique is exactly the same for a shape layer created with the pen tool.

              • 4. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                Gutterfish Adobe Community Professional

                Note the title of the thread.

                • 5. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                  brianhorne8 Level 1

                  Thanks for the reply, Rick. I understand what you're saying, and if I create any shape that's not a 2 pointed, straight line, I can edit it just like I always would. In the video I linked to, you can see that I'm able to do that but unable to do the same when the line is at 90º. I've filed a bug report with Adobe and hope to hear back from them soon.

                   

                  One interesting thing to note is that I can create a non-straight 2 pointed line, edit it, but the second I drag both ends to a guide to make a straight 90º line, the option to edit like I normally would (grab, manipulate, etc) in the composition panel goes away. It's not until I either undo that previous action to make the line straight or go to the layer panel, select the layer, then switch to the pen tool and move one of the points up or down a pixel (thus making it a line that AE sees as anything besides straight) and I can edit as usual.

                   

                  Here's a video showing that problem as well:

                  • 6. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                    Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    I did note the title. I have seen many students try and manipulate the endpoints of a 2 point line and fail because they do not understand the modifier keys and look at the cursor. If you do not properly use a modifier key or observe the tool behavior to click on the endpoint of a line then the path will either close or you won't reliably select a point. Just selecting a path or trying to select one of many two-point paths on a shape layer incredibly complex without careful use of the modifier keys and observation of the points and the tool.

                     

                    My point-- 99% chance this is just user error caused by inexperience with the tools.

                    • 7. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                      brianhorne8 Level 1

                      Rick, with all due respect I've been using AE for 10 years and never encountered this until last night. If you watch the videos I posted, you can see that I'm not even able to have the layer highlighted by the cursor in the window (no clicking, dragging, using any tools, etc) if the line is perfectly flat (90º, 180º). However the second I edit the points (using the tools you're asserting that I don't know how to use), I can highlight it, edit it, etc, all without leaving the composition panel.

                       

                      One thing to note in the vide is that the ONLY time I'm able to access that straight line in the composition panel is by clicking and dragging over its anchor point in the center of the screen. I can't select any other portion of the line via that method and have it work, but the instant it's not a straight line, I can.

                       

                      I'd be 100% fine with eating crow and it being user error, but I feel pretty good about how to get around in AE considering the length of time I've been using it.

                      • 8. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                        brianhorne8 Level 1

                        Can you attempt to recreate this? Modifier keys, as Rick's trying to tell me to use, don't even allow me to edit the line when it's straight. I can only get to them through the layer panel. And I can't even move the layer unless I use the keyboard. Flat line, no bueno. Anything else is business as usual.

                         

                        So strange.

                        • 9. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                          Gutterfish Adobe Community Professional

                          This is my earlier post.  There is definitely some weirdness going on.

                           

                          Gutterfish  wrote

                           

                          I cannot duplicate the behavior exactly.

                          When I draw a two point line (straight) and center the anchor point I DO get the ghost dot at the center of the screen

                          however I CAN select my line and move it around (the ghost dot moves with it) nothing happens if I click the ghost dot.

                          That's in AE 2017.

                           

                          In 2018 everything is the same for me except when I click on the ghost dot the path vanishes completely (both visually & also in the shape layer's attributes) and the ghost dot moves to where the anchor point was.

                          To anyone else who may be reading this: the "ghost dot" is NOT the anchor point.  The ghost dot remains even after centering the AP.

                          • 10. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                            Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                            I did not see the tool change when you were selecting the endpoints. I can reproduce the selection issues if I am a little sloppy in my technique but holding down Ctrl/Cmnd and waiting for the open selection tool gives me the ability to drag around either endpoint to make the selection and then move it anywhere I want. Even if I select the entire line with the solid selection tool, then hold down Ctrl/Cmnd and move the tool off the line to get the open selection tool, I can drag around either endpoint and make a selection then drag the point around anywhere I want to drag it. There is no change in behavior from any previous version of AE that I recall that has the pen tool.

                            • 11. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                              brianhorne8 Level 1

                              Exactly! Sorry that I didn't note that I was able to replicate your disappearing line act as well. It's a drag that something so essential to what I'm trying to do is hampering me this much. I'm sure there are workarounds, but those workarounds are definitely not faster than making a two pointed line, selecting it in the comp, and dragging it/editing it how I'd like to without leaving that window.

                               

                              I wonder if it's a combination of OS and CC version? Just seems like something that would have been noted sooner.

                               

                              In the words of Ted Theodore Logan: "Strange things are afoot at the Circle K."

                              • 12. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                I don't think that you are seeing a change in behavior. Using a modifier key to drag a selection around any path point is not slow, it is efficient. Once you have one point selected you can select the other point directly using the modifier key. If the path is closed you do not need the modifier key to select a different point.

                                • 13. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                  brianhorne8 Level 1

                                  Rick, I appreciate your insight, but you're still missing the point of what I'm trying to do. I don't need to modify the lines in any way other than to move them around. The entire point I'm trying to make, and the issue that I've been having, is that when the line is straight, I cannot select that line without selecting the anchor point in the center. The instant that line goes to anything else (curved, angled, you name it) I can simply slide my cursor over the layer and see all edges, the path, and am able to select it on the fly. I don't need modifiers. I'm not trying to modify anything right now. I'm trying to build up an object using lines that I'll eventually need to bend...but for now, I need to be able to move them into place so that later I can bend them when I'm animating. For now though, forget about modifiers. I don't need any of that. I just want to be able to select a line on the fly.

                                   

                                  And per Gutter-Fish's comment, when that line is straight, AE is making some sort of phantom point just above the line that is unrelated (and never created by myself or him). If you move the anchor point, AE still leaves that phantom dot. If you select it, the line disappears. It's bizarre and something is up.

                                  • 14. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                    Roei Tzoref Adobe Community Professional

                                    toms47936273,brianhorne8, Gutterfish thank you for your insights.

                                     

                                    I have come across these issues from time to time but could not pin point them.

                                     

                                    there is definitely a bug for straight lines path shape paths, I have tested it in previous versions and it happens there as well.

                                     

                                    here's a sure way to reproduce it:

                                    1. if you create a straight line shape path, deselect it (F2) - now you cannot select it in the comp window by clicking on it (like with any line that is not straight)

                                    2. if you create a straight line shape path, and change the anchor point, it leaves a trace like a layer handle that doesn't do anything aka ghost dot.

                                     

                                    here's a recording of the issues:

                                    straightlineshape_bug.mp4 - Google Drive

                                     

                                    workaround for #1 : drag with the Selection tool to draw a marquee-selection box around your shape to select it - now the layer is selected. you have 2 choices to access the shape layer:

                                    1. once the layer is selected, activate the pen tool (G) and you will have access to the path vertices if the layer is selected

                                    2. with the selection tool active hold the Ctrl key and click on the shape - now the shape group is targeted. if you want the path click one more time. if you want one of the vertices, marquee select one of them.

                                     

                                    I will submit a bug report as well

                                    • 15. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                      Kevin-Monahan Adobe Employee

                                      Hi TomS,

                                      Have you filed a bug yet? Please do so, so that the developers can provide a fix.

                                       

                                      Thanks,
                                      Kevin

                                      • 16. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                        brianhorne8 Level 1

                                        I filed a bug report the day I discovered the issue. The Adobe team is aware and has notified me they're looking into a fix.

                                        • 17. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                          hee_chong

                                          HI Kevin,

                                           

                                          Did you know When the bug can be fix?

                                          • 18. Re: 2 point line (pen tool) bug
                                            Kevin-Monahan Adobe Employee

                                            Sorry hee_chong, I do not. Make sure you file one as well here.

                                             

                                            Thanks,
                                            Kevin