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How to unlink compositions

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Julie Allen
How to unlink compositions
on Jan 9, 2017 at 7:57:18 pm

Hello all,
I am working with an AE template, in AE 2017, with which I will create a bunch of custom version to use as openings to a series of videos. I have a master composition with everything set the way I need it to be, but when I create a new composition and then copy the layers from the master into my new composition, things are linked. If I change text in one composition, they are also changed in the other composition.

I have used this process to create a series of related files before with no issues, for example, a series of lower thirds for a video. Is there a better way to duplicate a composition several times so I can update the text in each one individually without affecting the others?

Thank you in advance for all suggestions.

PC specs are:
Toshiba laptop
Windows 10
Intel Core i7-4700MQ
2.4 GHZ
16GB RAM

Julie

Julie Allen
Writer | Producer


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Walter Soyka
Re: How to unlink compositions
on Jan 9, 2017 at 8:50:34 pm

When you duplicate a comp in Ae, it makes a unique copy of only that comp; any precomps (other compositions used within a comp) are referenced as they are; they are not duplicated.

To duplicate the entire tree, you can use this script:
http://aescripts.com/true-comp-duplicator/

... or you can import your original AEP several times into the same new project; each complete project will be separate.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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Julie Allen
Re: How to unlink compositions
on Jan 10, 2017 at 2:05:14 pm

Good morning Walter,

Thanks for the idea - it worked well to just import multiple copies of my original composition. I'll keep this in mind for next time.

However, I have created pieces before by just copying and pasting into new compositions the layers I copied from an original composition within the same project. Do you think this issue is something new with 2017? Just curious.

Thank you,
Julie

Julie Allen
Writer | Producer


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Walter Soyka
Re: How to unlink compositions
on Jan 10, 2017 at 3:09:15 pm

[Julie Allen] "Do you think this issue is something new with 2017"

No. I think that some of the layers in the main comp are other compositions, but some screenshots or the project file would help me understand what you're working with better.

Think of it this way. Let's say Comp A1 has a layer inside it that is another comp called Comp B1, as well as a text layer named T1 and a footage item called F1. (When compositions are nested like this, they are called pre-compositions or precomps.) When you copy and paste these layers into a new comp, that text layer T1 becomes a whole new object unrelated to the original you copied -- but the layers which refer to project items, Comp B1 and Footage F1, still refer to project items. They are not automatically duplicated. If you wanted to make them separate, you'd have to manually duplicate Comp B1 in the project panel (now getting Comp B2), and REPLACE the use of Comp B1 with Comp B2.

In other words, when you copy and paste a layer that is a reference to a source in the project panel (comps, footage, solids), it copies the reference. Both copies refer to the same original, so changing the original affects both uses.

When you copy and paste a layer that does not have a source in the project, like a shape layer or text layer, there is no reference and the two copies are separate and distinct.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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