10 Replies Latest reply on Dec 9, 2010 4:31 PM by Dave LaRonde

    New to AE -Question

    mentlity Level 1

      I have been working on Flash for years and I just started looking into AE. From some lynda tutes I was able to do basic importing, animation and few effects. I see something I need to find out a bit more about and have not seen in any tutes, here is what I mean:


      I have a psd layered file that needs to be animated, the file needs to be 1920 x 1080 at 24 fr rate. My question is, do I need to have the composition settings set to the same as the finished output file would be? Reasons are when I try to view in the composition window I cannot get the correct view to have the file appear in it's intirerty as I only can get the actual view of a piece of the file not the whole file at a smaller view. So if I imported the file then changed the composition settings to the same aspect ratio of 16:9 but a smaller size like 600 x 480 (just an example) will I be able to view the entire file within the comp view panel?



      Playing back the file at the original file size is a ram hog as well and a smaller file will use less ram for playback which leads me to the second part to this,  if I'm on the right track is it OK to do all my edits and animations in the smaller file size, then when I'm ready to render the output file change it back to the original required file size and svae to the final output file?





        • 1. Re: New to AE -Question
          Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Your main composition really should be the same settings as your final output will be.

          You can lower resolution of the comp window which will give you longer RAM previews. More about that here.

          Also, you can set the zoom level of the composition window to make it smaller.


          You should really go through these resources though. They are the fastest way to get the basics taken care of.

          • 2. Re: New to AE -Question
            mentlity Level 1

            Thx for that , one more question here. As I mentioned I need to animate a file and set the composition to




            1920x1080, square pixel aspect


            Frame Rate per Second: 24 or 23.98


            2 Channel Audio embedded in file: LT/RT or Stereo L/R


            Title Safe area: 20% from all outside edges


            I'm able to select in the composition settings but the .psd file is 5575 x 1750 pxls. from studying the basic AE pricipals if I import this file and render at the current composition size the viewing area will be cut off. So do I resample the photoshop .psd to 1920 x1080 and then import in?


            I will have pixelization no?



            • 3. Re: New to AE -Question
              Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Resizing a Photoshop document smaller will not introduce pixelization. So, if you don't plan to "zoom in" to your Photoshop creation, feel free to make it smaller in Photoshop. Don't forget that you can also scale things in AE if you need to.


              Also, the correct frame rate is 23.976, not 23.98

              • 4. Re: New to AE -Question
                mentlity Level 1

                Thanks for this as I did some additional studying and see that whatever size the doc is imported into AE will render the same in the output, correct?.


                So I advized the client to have the psd the correct size before me starting to animate in AE or as in this case I did scale everything  down in Photoshop and there was no pixelization so either way I'm good.





                • 5. Re: New to AE -Question
                  mentlity Level 1

                  After reading up on this I'm a bit confused. I have a .psd that is 5575 x 1750 pxls it has title safe markers and I need to convert the psd to  1920 x1080 hd.


                  how do I import the psd in photoshop to make it render to the output size I need and retain the title safe markers?



                  • 6. Re: New to AE -Question
                    Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    In Photoshop, just change the image size and then Save As and give it a new name so you don't overwrite your original file. Don't change the aspect ratio in Photoshop, keep that linked.

                    • 7. Re: New to AE -Question
                      Dave LaRonde Level 6

                      After reading up on this I'm a bit confused. I have a .psd that is 5575 x 1750 pxls it has title safe markers and I need to convert the psd to  1920 x1080 hd.

                      You're not the only one who's confused -- nobody has a clue about what you're animating in AE.  Scale?  Position?  Rotation?  An AE effect applied to the photoshop document?  Something else?  If you don't animate anything, this psd is going to just lay there like a dead animal.


                      But to answer your question directly:

                      • Import the psd file into your AE project.
                      • Create a 1920x1080, square-pixel comp at 23.976 frames/sec.
                      • Drag the psd file into the comp
                      • Scale and position this layer as necessary to make it fit in the comp as it should
                      • Animate something.  Exactly what?  Cripes, we don't know.


                      Nor do we know why there are visible title safe markers on this file.  They won't become invisible in AE, y'know.  How do you plan to get rid of them?

                      Then there's this tiny little matter of what your client expects you to deliver; you haven't said anything about it.


                      As you've probably noticed, AE is not the kind of application that lets you learn a couple of neat tricks and get going.  You can't just jump into the deep end of the pool and start swimming.  It's the kind of application that demands that you learn to walk before you run.  You have to learn the basics before you get to the fun stuff.  And you've been given links to help you learn the basics.


                      I suggest that before you attempt to do work for paying customers, you should learn a bit about AE.

                      • 8. Re: New to AE -Question
                        Szalam Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        As Dave said,

                        You have to learn the basics before you get to the fun stuff.  And you've been given links to help you learn the basics.


                        In case you didn't notice it before, here's the link that Dave mentions..

                        • 9. Re: New to AE -Question
                          mentlity Level 1

                          Sorry to confuse you let me explain a bit. The 5575 x 1750 pxls psd file is in layers that need to be animated.


                          text on one layer scaling on another so on and so forth. I'm used to working in Flash and found AE to be much more superior. My question was  based on scaling as I found out if I import a file of that size (5575 x 1750)  into a new composition  set at 1920 x 1180 either animating or not the file will render at the composition size. So I was reading that I can either import a 1920 x 1180 psd which would have to be scaled down from the original psd file whichid obvious. But I was confused when I read that I can import a file 5575 x 1750 into AE and have AE scale it down to the 1920 x 1180 size and AE will also render the title safe markers as they would have to be re calculated to fit the 1920 x 1180 size.


                          I hope this is a bit clearer as I also understand what you mean about knowing AE better. But I have been working in Flash for 5+ years along with Photoshop and Illustrator  I have enough knowledge in AE to animate, use some basic effects just enough for what the client wants. What I needed to know about was importing psd files and have AE scale it down to my chosen composition size.


                          Your expertise is appriciated as I still have a long way to go mastering AE.



                          • 10. Re: New to AE -Question
                            Dave LaRonde Level 6

                            Well, the way you're going about this is NOT the way to properly do it, I assure you.  You have to unlearn old Flash concepts and learn new AE concepts, and right now, you're still in Flash-Land.

                            So if you promise not to do any second-guessing, here's a step-by-step to get you going, and you By-God follow it, okay?


                            • Open your photoshop document.  Rename all the layers, giving them descriptive, logical names.  DO NOT use "Layer 0", "Layer 1", "Layer 1 Copy" or any of that nonsense.  You will thank yourself later.
                            • Import the psd as a composition; you should go here: http://help.adobe.com/en_US/aftereffects/cs/using/WS3878526689cb91655866c1103906c6dea-7f78 a.html  and look for the Heading, "Import a still-image sequence as a composition".  This document, incidentally, will become you new best friend.
                            • Create a 1920 x 1080, square-pixel comp at 23.976 frames/sec.  forget about that 1920 x 1180 jazz -- it's WRONG.
                            • In the project window, navigate to the folder containing your photoshop layers.  Add them to the comp.  Understand that like in photoshop, the uppermost layer in the timeline covers up the layers below it.
                            • Scale and position your footage until it looks right in the comp window.  That's it -- you don't have to fart around with resizing things; just scale 'em until they look right.
                            • To see the Title Safe and Action Safe overlays for your comp, click on the button at the bottom of the comp window.
                            • Animate your layers using keyframes.


                            That should get your started.  Since you presumably have no notion of the codec in which to render your epic, your fun is just beginning.