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AE is best suited for working with short scenes or shots. I use dynamic link to isolate separate elements from Premiere Pro or simply copy the shots that I want to enhance or modify and paste them into After Effects. Copy and paste is probably used about 75% of the time. Once the shots are finished I bring them into my NLE and replace the existing footage. On rare occasions I'll bring an entire sequence or scene into AE to process or enhance, but this scene is all ready at the final edit stage. The only time I bring an entire program into AE is for final color grading. In that case I bring in the rendered final cut and not the entire sequence so I only have one layer to deal with.
This brings up a good point. Whenever you work on individual sections of a production you should always include handles on the in and out points that are long enough to facilitate some fine tuning. I always add at least 30 frames or 1 second to the head and tail to make room for transitions. Sometimes there's more like 3 or 4 seconds. If I've shot entire green screen sequences I may process the entire take so that there's more flexibility in the NLE to modify things. The longer I'm in this business the faster I get at the first cut and the more time I spend on finish. The re-edit or finish is where the story is really told. It's where most of my time is spent so It's important to me to keep my options open.
What do you mean by copying and pasting? Are you refering to copying segements from PP and pasting them into AE? If so, I cannot get that to work it seems. I can only import the original unedited footage into AE which is much more footage than I actually need to apply effects to.
Copy and paste is a CS3 feature. Open Premiere Pro, Open After Effects.
Pick the shot you want to move into After Effects in the Timeline. Copy. Note the length of the shot and add about 2 seconds.
Go to AE, start a new comp that's long enough to bring in your clip.
Select the empty timeline panel and paste and then use Cmnd/Ctrl + home to move the in point of the clip to the start of the time line.
This does bring in the entire clip, but it doesn't duplicate it so there's no extra drive space needed. You can then add the appropriate handles and render out a replacement.
Hope this helps.
My own standard workflow is slightly different. The majority of my work is very short duration - 15 and 30 sec TV commercials, for example. Typically, I'll export the entire edit as an uncompressed Quicktime, then import that file to AE. (I use Final Cut Pro to edit.)
For longer complex edits that require a lot of treatment or colour correction, I use a third party plugin called Automatic Duck that works a little like Dynamic Link, and allows the FCP timeline to be imported directly to AE.
I've gotten as far as copying the file portion from the timeline in PP...when I paste it into AE it is going into the 'comp 1' window in the bottom left of the screen.
Is that right? Also, if it is I have no idea how to tell whether or not the CTL+home worked or not.
That's as far as I've gotten and, excuse my ignorance with AE but, the rest of your instructions are a bit too vague for me in regards to placing handles and rendering out what is needed.
Thank you. I'm very close!
You better be careful copying from one app & pasting to another. If you don't keep the source clip in the same path (like if you delete it or move the AE project), you will lose the link and get a color bars placeholder in AE. Make sure, since we're talking about workflow here, your sources stay with the project.
Oh, *that's* what causes that color bar thing! I'm so glad I checked in. (-:<br /><br />(Another thing that I think is important to remember is that if you have applied PP effects that AE does not support and then you copy and paste, I think AE will just ignore those effects, so you will have to either apply them again later or find something similar in AE.)<br /><br />I have a question that's very much a workflow question, as well:<br /><br />I am trying to preserve as much quality as possible in my projects, and have been told to do *all* of my effects and rendering in AE, but I guess I don't understand how that works. As Rick pointed out above, it seems that AE is much better for very short clips, so it would make sense to render out the final project in the NLE, but I'm told I will lose color depth if I do this (I'm trying to work in at least 16 bit), among possibly other quality concerns. So I don't know what to do. <br /><br />So far I have been bringing my footage's top 10 percent luminosity (from YUV space) into RGB range using the ProcAmp effect in PP, then rendering out each clip as Quicktime Animation, highest quality setting. (I would love to render out as a TIFF sequence, but that's just images, and I have linked sound with many clips.) Some of these files are, of course, huge, and seem to be too much for AE RAM preview, despite my best efforts to improve performance, using <shift> RAM preview, etc.<br /><br />I'm not sure what to do to make this all work better. I feel as though I have learned all these important steps, but no cohesive path upon which to lay them out. Should I chop my clips up into subclips per edit before rendering out to animations? Should I just bag the notion of saving my higher 10 percent luminence data? Should I install a RAID and try again? Is it normal to have to edit your piece in your NLE and then edit it again in AE? Do most people just bring them back to the NLE in the end, anyway?<br /><br />Okay, that was more than one question, but any help on this will be appreciated. (-:<br /><br />Thank you!<br /><br />Leha<br /><br />Any tips greatly appreciated!