1) I have put together a pretty complex animation with a voice over. It has had to change a bit so now the syncing of actions is affected. Is it possible to insert a certain amount of time in the time line that simply stretches the time that elapses before before the next key frames to the right of a certain point? So that it affects all key frames on all layers. In other words it pushes everything to the right for the amount of time you specify? If you do this by selecting all key frames and dragging them, the layers get left behind?

Please see the steps below:

  1. Pre Compose all your animated layers (Without the audio) into its own composition (you do this by selecting all the animated layers and then from the Layer menu or Right Click choose Pre-Compose).
  2. In the Pre compose dialog choose ‘Move all attributes into the new Composition'.
  3. Select the pre-comp layer and from the menu bar choose Layer > Time > Enable Time Remapping. This will reveal the animated property of Time Remap with a keyframe at the start and end positions of the layer.
  4. Find the place in time of your animation that that you want to synchronise with the audio and add a keyframe for Time Remap.
  5. Move the keyframe to the point in time that you want this this part of the animation to happen in respect to the audio.

This method allows you to animate the timing of the entire animation within a single property.

2) I have created a black and white animation 90 secs in length. I decided to render using media encoder for use on you tube at 1080 HD (their default) and it comes up asa 70 MB MP4 file. for 720 HD I get 50 MB. Any hints on how to get it down any further. I envisage this just being seen on social media platforms such as Yout tube. Is this a fair question to ask on this forum?

50 - 70 Mb is not a bad size for HD video these days. 

  • It seems you may have chosen Media Encoder’s "Youtube 1080P" preset option - sometimes you will get a better file size result if you choose "Match Source - High Bitrate" as a preset.
  • You could also modify it by adjusting the Target bit-rate or increasing the Key Frame Distance in the Video tab of the Export Settings dialog.
  • The main issue is how well your video streams. H.264 should compress your video  quite well because of the simplicity of the graphics.
  • Having a static title fade in and out at the start can also aid streaming for H.264 long GOP  (VBR) producing fast buffering to allow the buffering of larger frames in advance of playback.

3) How do I motion track a speech bubble (created in Photoshop) to move with an already motion tracked person? Do I analyse and apply on comp or layer?

(Additional information) I've been just going through the same process on the composition we did together in class but when I get to the stage of using the pan behind tool to place anchor point on the point of shape, I'm doing it wrong as the track motion isn't working. On my video layer, I can't see the shape, I can only see it on my comp layer but I shouldn't be doing track motion on that should I? 

Here are the steps for motion tracking:

  1. Place the video and the speech bubble image in the composition together with the bubble layer on top.
  2. Use the Pan Behind tool to move the anchor point of the bubble to the point where you want it to be tracked from (Usually the end of the external spike of the bubble)
  3. Select the video layer and click on the Track Motion button of the Tracker panel. (This will open the video layer on the layer window so you won’t see your bubble for the moment)
  4. Set up your tracker frame around the object you want to track and the click the Analyse Forward button.
  5. Once you are happy with your tracking click on the Edit Target button (in the Tracker panel) to ensure you have the correct layer targeted (your bubble) to apply the tracking animation to and click OK to close the dialog.
  6. Then click the Apply button at to bottom of the Tracker panel. (Often new users forget this step
  7. You will then be returned to the composition where you can fine tune the results (Usually by adjusting the Anchor point value in the timeline to adjust the relative position).

Note: There is an exercise in Single Point Motion Tracking in the After effects classroom in a book on page 322 (CC2014) or 327 (CC)

4) I want to make a master comp consisting of lots of mini comps I have made, all combining into one comp, ready to output. However I am working to a soundtrack in the parent comp. How do I edit the lengths of individual child comps to tweak them to fit the soundtrack. When I open up a child comp I can no longer use the soundtrack layer to guide me. I found this script to transfer markers but not sure where I would input it if this is the best answer?

  • In the master comp select the nested comp you want to re-time with the audio and from the Layer menu choose Time > Enable Time Remapping.

That will put a keyframe at the beginning and the end of the layer for the Time Remap property. 

  1. Either position your playhead at the point in the audio you want to sync a frame to in the nested comp and set the time remap value to the desired frame … or
  2. Add a keyframe for Time Remap on the frame where the desired sync of the nested comp appears and then move that keyframe to the sync point in the audio.

5 I’ve been asked to put together some footage and make/overlay animated text with glares. An external editor is putting this video together. I’ve been asked to export the text with glare sections without the background so he can overlay it over footage (I think he is using Final Cut Pro).  The sections comprise of two layers – Text photoshop comp underneath the glares comp which has ‘Add’ selected. Is there a way that I can export and the transparency will remain? I’m sure you told us about this in class?

Steps to export video with alpha transparency for FCP:

  1. Composition > Add to Render Queue
  2. On Output Module click on the word Lossless
  3. On Video Output / Channels choose RGB + Alpha
  4. Click the Format Options Button
  5. Under Video Codec choose Apple ProRes 4444
  6. Ok out of those 2 dialogs and then Render

Note: Once you have chosen those settings you can save them as a Preset

6) As my part of the footage edit/animation, I have been given a globe which is 29.97fps, and the video is 25fps. The globe has been made in C4D and is flickering white stripes, even though I have converted the composition to 25fps. The video editor is also telling me that I have still supplied 29.97fps when I exported at 25fps. I may be brave enough to say that he isn’t right, but wondered if you can help?

 Frame rate issue:

  1. From Project panel right click on globe video and choose Interpret Footage > Main
  2. Conform Frame rate to 25fps
  3. Also check in Fields and Pulldown that Separate Fields is set to Off (Progressive)

7) My video is 1280x720. I’ve now been asked to make it 1080x1920. Is there a way of upscaling everything without losing the position of everything and having to adjust it all?

Answer to your upscaling issue:

  1. Create a new comp at 1920x1080
  2. Drag you 1280x720 comp into it
  3. Scale it up to fit the frame.
  4. Check the "Collapse Transformations / Continuously Rasterise" layer button on the layer (Switch box on layer 4 columns to the left of the Motion Blur switch) This will take care of any scaling/pixellation issues with text and vector graphics. Unfortunately, any video or images that were at 100% scale would be losing a little quality by upscaling.

8) Using a camera to track across a number of layers. one of the layers is a pre comp. But when i move the camera around, the pre comp moves in tandem with the camera. If I parent it to another layer it still moves with the camera. I do need the pre comp to move independently now and then so cant pre comp it to another layer to lock it down. All layers are 3D enabled. How can I get the pre comp to stay where i position it!?

It sounds like the pre-comp is no longer 3D within the present comp and therefore always facing the camera. (Even thought the layers inside it may be 3D it is treated like a video as a layer in the present comp) If you pre-compose 3D layers the 3D attributes will be transferred to the new comp. If you don’t want this it is best to pre-compose your layers while they are 2D and then make the new pre-comp layer 3D within the present comp where your camera is. Alternatively, if you ensure your pre-comp is set to 3D in the present comp and also check the Collapse Transformations switch on the layer (A few switches left of Motion Blur) this will reveal the inner 3D depth of the pre-comp layer.

9) I want to edit a person out of some footage they are hidden but not enough and we can make out the person, dont really want to use blur effect, was wondering if importing into photoshop would be better but cant find how i can do this as its greyed out?

If your camera is still (On a tripod) you can export a frame by clicking on the Export Frame (Camera Icon) button on the Program Monitor (Shift + E (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + E (Win)) Choose PNG and Import into Project. Then open the image in Photoshop, clone out your person however you like and then delete the rest of the frame to make an alpha (Transparency) channel.

(This could be more efficiently done if you have a frame that does not have the person in it so no cloning is needed.)

Back in Premiere Pro, add this image to a track above your video and the person will be hidden. Check through the frame that the person does not move out from behind the image and also that no other foreground people hit the edge and go behind it.

If there is camera movement in the shot this will obviously be more difficult and would require work in After Effects.