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Automate Photoshop to After Effects to Targa Image

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Richie Schut
Automate Photoshop to After Effects to Targa Image
on Dec 7, 2011 at 11:21:29 pm

I am working on something that seems to be a common problem. I sometimes need Targa images with straight alpha rather then premultiplied. My current solution takes to long with the countless images I need to make, so I am trying to figure out how to automate the process.

Currently I save a .psd from photoshop, then put it on a timeline in after effects. Render as a Targa sequence one frame in length with a straight alpha channel. Then I have to rename the Targa. Any ideas on how I can make this happen faster?

Thanks
Richie


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Walter Soyka
Re: Automate Photoshop to After Effects to Targa Image
on Dec 8, 2011 at 4:28:43 am

I am not a big Targa workflow fan. Is Targa really your only option?

See Richard Harrington's tutorial on Photoshop straight alpha [link].

Short version: in Photoshop, reveal only the layers you want to be seen, then create the alpha channel with the "Alpha Channel from Visible Layers" action (in Video Actions). Once that's done, reveal the background layers again and save as a 32bpp Targa with alpha channel.

The TGA's alpha channel, which was defined by the visibility of the layers before you ran the action, will cut the RGB channels, which will include all of the picture information that was visible (including the full BG, not premultiplied white or black) when you saved.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Richie Schut
Re: Automate Photoshop to After Effects to Targa Image
on Dec 8, 2011 at 5:17:28 pm

In my search for an answer I did watch that video. While it does provide improved results the issue is still the same. Targa is not the only option, I can also use tiff or .psd files. However they still need a straight alpha which photoshop will not do. Let me know if you have any other ideas!

Thanks
Richie


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Walter Soyka
Re: Automate Photoshop to After Effects to Targa Image
on Dec 8, 2011 at 6:10:46 pm

Import all your stills into After Effects.

Select them all, then drag the selection onto the New Comp button in the bottom of the Project Panel.

In the dialog box, choose to create multiple compositions, set the duration to a single frame, and tick the box to add them to the render queue.

In the render queue, select all the output modules and change it to whatever still image format you prefer. (If you need something custom, create and save an output module template.) Render.

Optionally use a batch-rename utility to strip the frame numbers from the rendered files.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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