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Link Text width to Mask Shape

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Stefan Koler
Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 1:59:53 pm

Hey there,

I'm trying to create template in which a mask changes if text is changed (gets shorter or longer).

So I created a shape layer wit a mask and a text layer. I applied the "link" (I guess that's what its called in the english version) to the shape layer. And here's where problems start: There are no text-parameters that I could choose to make the mask recognize the length of my text. Anybody got an idea how to do that?

Maybe there is a work-around. If I could tell the anchor point of my text layer to always stay on the right edge of my text-area, then I could use the anchor point as a reference and link my mask behaviour to that anchor point.


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Mark Spencer
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 2:09:03 pm

You aren't going to be able to do this, I'm afraid. There is no exposed parameter in Motion that stores a text length. If you move the anchor to the right, then the text will be align right and the anchor won't move as the text length changes. What you CAN do, however, is rig a control to allow someone in Motion OR FCP X to manually adjust your mask to the text length by dragging a slider - or moving an on-screen control.

--
Mark Spencer
Freelance Producer/Editor/Motion Graphics Artist
Apple-certified Master Trainer
Author, Motion 4 from Peachpit Press
http://www.applemotion.net


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 2:41:14 pm

What Mark says is as always exactly right but there is a workaround that I exploited in this template that works as you are wanting it to.

http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/344/5962

It uses the Simple Border filter to create the box but with some extra complications in order to keep everything resizing proportionately.

Simon Ubsdell
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Mark Spencer
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 2:58:42 pm

I'd love to check that out, Simon, but the link is dead. Can you make a new one?

--
Mark Spencer
Freelance Producer/Editor/Motion Graphics Artist
Apple-certified Master Trainer
Author, Motion 4 from Peachpit Press
http://www.applemotion.net


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 3:33:45 pm

Hi Mark

Here you go.

3923_tkysubtitlereffect.zip

I'm honoured that you should think it worth a look!

All the best.

Simon

Simon Ubsdell
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Mark Spencer
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 3:55:08 pm

Nicely done, Simon! The Simple Border effect "knows" the length of the text string because it always adjusts to the bounding box size of the layer - neat trick!

--
Mark Spencer
Freelance Producer/Editor/Motion Graphics Artist
Apple-certified Master Trainer
Author, Motion 4 from Peachpit Press
http://www.applemotion.net


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 29, 2012 at 7:45:24 pm

Thanks :)

Simon Ubsdell
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Stefan Koler
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 30, 2012 at 8:20:02 am

Thanks guys. Unfortunately I only have Motion 4. When I try to open the fil I get an error. Could you try to save it as a Motion 4 project? Or is it only possible within Motion 5?


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Mar 30, 2012 at 11:01:36 am

OK, I'll try to explain.

Make your text layer.

Make a clone of the text layer (not a duplicate) and put it below the main text layer.

Apply a Simple Border filter to the cloned text layer. Set the colour to something you can see - the default is black so if your background is black you want know what's going on!

Set the Simple Border width parameter to 100.

You will now have a box that exactly matches the main text layer whatever you do to that layer, whether it's inputting different text or scaling it or whatever.

The only problem is that it exactly fits the text object with no extra space but that's easily fixed. All you need to do is go into the properties for the clone layer and set the scale and position parameters to whatever you want.

If you want to be perfectionist, you need to offset the anchor point Y position so that any scaling you do is proportional, otherwise you will need to keep adjusting the position as you adjust the scale. If you set the anchor point right you can adjust the scale only and the position will take care of itself.

That's it.

I forgot to add that you'll need to set your text justification to centred for obvious reasons.

Simon Ubsdell
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Stefan Koler
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Jun 18, 2012 at 6:24:59 am

Thanks Simon,
Unfortunately I didn't had time to work on that project for some weeks. I tried to follow your description in Motion4. But I didn't got it working. To which layer do I have to apply the "link" behaviour. And to which parameters should it apply.

What I did:

I applied the link behaviour to my secondary text layer. Then I drag-dropped the clone layer of my primary text into the source box, applied the behaviour to the x-position of my secondary text and chose the simple border width as source-parameter. Next I saved the project as a template and tested it in FCP. Didn't work.


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Jun 18, 2012 at 8:21:53 am

Hi Stefan

It looks as though you have misunderstood the instructions - I didn't say anything about doing this with a link behavior.

The effect is achieved using a Clone of the original text layer.

To make a Clone select the text layer and hit "K". or Right Click and select Make Clone Layer. (This is the important part. The Clone will precisely match the original layer whatever you do to it. Read up about Clones in the manual as these are very useful and very powerful.)

Next apply the Simple Border filter to the Clone layer and set the Width value of the Simple Border filter to 100. Make sure the color of the Simple Border is something you can see - make it blue for example - just while you set up the effect.

Make sure the Clone Layer is below the original text layer.

This is all you have to do to get the basic effect. Read my earlier instructions for more details.

Simon Ubsdell
http://www.tokyo-uk.com


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Stefan Koler
Re: Link Text width to Mask Shape
on Jun 22, 2012 at 8:47:35 am

Hey Simon,

Of course, you're right. I was thinking too complicated. By the way, the text layer has not to be centered, if you create four clones of it and use only the position parameter to create one plane (instead of scale).
Works finde. Thank you.


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