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>I don't want to precompose,...
Get over it. Sorry, this is AE core functionality and any thinking along the lines of "may I kindly get some plugin" is just wasting time. Work with what you have and learn to use it as a tool, rather than seeing it as a limitation. And personally - seeing the shabby implementations of this feature in other programs - it's my personally least favorite feature request of all time, but if you feel it's important to you:
Regarding your other question: there is a script somewhere that does this, I believe. If you search AEnhancers or other script-related sites, you will certainly stumble upon it.
and I want everything in Photoshop to work like it does in After Effects. I hate almost everything about Photoshop's interface and pixel-level paradigm. Gimme layers and objects.
i Also, is there a way to precompose where it automatically makes the composition the length of that layer?
Here's the script Mylenium is probably referring to:
It's just that I have 15 things falling in. Nothing past that. There really isn't any reason to precompose other than organization. Although, if you precompose tons of stuff then your project area starts to get complicated as well. That's why I wanted something to collapse the layers.
And I totally agree about Photoshop. It really would be nice if it worked a bit more like AfterEffects in many respects. The only thing I really want different is the actual painting options I think. I wish Photoshop could link to files in the same way as well.
I think one feature that could be nice is some sort of connection to AfterEffects. That might be a good transition. If you could link AE layers into Photoshop and vice versa. That way you could keep some things resolution independant, and other things you could paint and make PS edits. I think that's a ways off though. I'm still waiting on 64bit so I can work on some decent size files.
And thanks Aaron. That sounds like what I am looking for.
My opinion too.
Precomposing means rather messing up my project than organizing. that new little button that brings me after somewhat subcomps back to my original comp is rather disturbing.
Grouping layers is the key guys. This should be the AE core functionality. rather then using shy layers. if you then would be able to apply fx to these groups, then go well.
I'm not even talking about being able to apply effects, although that could be cool too.
I just want it to maximize workspace. Yes, shy layers are nice, but grouping would be a quick way to act kind of as shy groups or something like that.
If there is some good interest in this I'll post it on the wishlist. I think that it could be really useful, and it's probably not ridiculously hard for them to do. Hopefully.
Layer grouping and/or editable nested comps is one of the most common requests received by the AE engineers, apparently. But the more people ask, the more likely it is to happen, so be sure to send Adobe a feature request!