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Text layers from Illustrator into After effects

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Sam KiddText layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 2:25:25 pm

I have been out of the editing world for a bit but I'm now getting back into it. I have an issue that I can't remember how I solved back in the day.

Years ago I could export a text file out of Illustrator and into AF. (I'm sure as a tiff) this allowed me to then import into AF which each letter of the text file on a different layer so I could then control each individual letter within AF.

I have tried so many options here, I'm now using CS5 and I'm about to kick the laptop across the room. I know this used to be a really easy to achieve thing but I can't for the life of me get this to work now.

Any help would be really welcome at this stage.


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Dave JohnsonRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 2:57:20 pm

The letters just have to be on separate AI layers (not grouped within one) and the file imported to AE as a comp (not just footage).

Since you mentioned being away from AE for a while, I'll mention that it's not nearly as necessary as it once was to do text separately in AI ... AE's text tool now generates text it treats as scalable vector and can even be converted to outlines within AE. Generally, I'll only create text in AI now if it needs to be fully custom (not font-based).


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Sam KiddRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 3:36:14 pm

Hi Dave,

Thanks for that, giving it a go now. The text I'm working with is a logo so that is why I was trying to bring it through from AI.

Thanks again for the help


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Karl-Jason MawdsleyRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 4:07:39 pm

Hi Sam,

As far as I know there are a number of different workarounds. By far the easiest way to is to just import your .ai file and make sure you select 'Composition - Cropped Layers'. Then all your layers will come into After Effects exactly as they are in illustrator. Make sure you 'Create Outlines' for all your text though. However if for some reason that won't work for you I find a good way to bring anything from Illustrator to After Effects is to 'Create Outlines' on my text, Select all, then copy it. The jump on over the After Effects, create a new solid and then paste. All your stuff will come in as masks on the solid. Then, if you'd like a greater level of control, you can run run the Masks to Shapes script and create shapes of all your masks. Then you'll be able to add layer styles, fills etc...

Hope this is useful.

KJ


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Sam KiddRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 4:08:12 pm

Hi Dave,

Still no joy. I have everything in seperate layers but when I bring it into AF It's just one file. I can't expand it down to show all the letter of the logo.

Any ideas? is there some way to show layers within AF

Sam


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Dave LaRondeRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 4:14:58 pm

I'd double-check that Illustrator document.

Unless you create new layers in Illustrator (Layer 1, Layer 2, etc.), and then move the various pieces as needed into those newly-created layers, you won't get layers when you import the Illustrator document into AE as a comp.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Dave JohnsonRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 5:10:03 pm

Sam,

As Dave L. suggested, are you sure you've got the letters on separate layers and you're importing an .ai into After Effects as a comp?

The AI letters have to be on separate layers ... not just separate groups or clipping paths within one layer). The .ai file also has to be imported into AE as a comp ... the "import as" checkbox has to be changed to "comp" from the default "footage".


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Sam KiddRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 17, 2010 at 9:03:48 pm

Finally got it. I did have the text separated into group layers and not actual layers. Nearly broke me :-)

Took a break had some food, and wine then it suddenly made sense and sorted it very quickly.

Thanks to you all for you help.


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Todd KoprivaRe: Text layers from Illustrator into After effects
by on Aug 18, 2010 at 4:14:07 am

Jumping in a little late here, but here's a page that gives some more information about preparing Illustrator files for use in After Effects.

I think that you might find the script for converting sublayers to top-level layers to be particularly handy.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
Technical Support for professional video software
After Effects Help & Support
Premiere Pro Help & Support
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