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How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?

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Andre Anthonio
How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 7:11:55 pm

I'm about to commit suicide. Please save me!

Posting a thread is always a last resort for me but in this case I'm more than 12 hours into trying to learn my way around what I think is a fairly basic problem to which I can't find the answer.

I am new to After Effects but I'm experienced editor and Sony Vegas is my preference.

I purchased an AE composition for use with a project and I've been through several tutorials.

In the composition, there is a layer that is repeated several times (that layer is a box in which a photo goes inside) and I want to change the photo every time the layer is repeated.

I can easily change the photo in the first layer, and when I follow the same steps to change the photo in the next layer, AE changes the photo in all the associated layers.

This is very frustrating.

I've tried copying and making a new composition, then it throws off my settings and I get stuck, again. Hours have gone by. I don't have days to fix this.

Is there a way to change the image linked to a repeated layer but not have it affect the other layers?

Hope I'm explaining this correctly. I've been and searched through the Forums and can't find anything specific to this issue.

I'm at the end of my rope. Any and all responses are appreciated.

With, thanks.

Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Dave LaRonde
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 7:35:06 pm

A couple of diagnostic questions:


[Andre Anthonio] "In the composition, there is a layer that is repeated several times (that layer is a box in which a photo goes inside) and I want to change the photo every time the layer is repeated."

Is this repeated layer a nested composition, a comp within a comp? It certainly sounds like it.



[Andre Anthonio] " can easily change the photo in the first layer, and when I follow the same steps to change the photo in the next layer, AE changes the photo in all the associated layers."

Please describe the PRECISE steps you take to change the photo in this next layer.

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


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Kevin Camp
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 7:48:30 pm

if the repeated photo is not in a nested comp, is there an effect applied to the layer like motion tile or cc repetile?

if so, those effects are designed to repeat out a layer and you won't be able to get that to change to different image for each iteration.

you would need to bring in multiple images and place them where you need them.

Kevin Camp
Senior Designer
KCPQ, KMYQ & KRCW


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Andre Anthonio
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 8:50:13 pm

Kevin:

Thanks for responding. Yes, I can't change the photos as easily as I would like. Can you please give me a vector on how best to change in a nested comp? Here's a short video that I've posted to help describe my situation. Many thanks!

Andre

Here's the link:







Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Andre Anthonio
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 8:47:41 pm

Thanks for responding, Dave. I'd really appreciate all the help I can get. BTW, I was an AP for WMBB-TV (ABC) in Panama City, Panama, years ago. At any rate, yes the layer is within a composition, within a composition. The precise steps, I double click on the layer in which I want to replace the photo, and I can replace the photo, and the new photo goes where I want. The only problem it replaces the photo in all of the other layers, as well. I've prepared a short video illustrating the problem. If you could take a look but I'm sure I have to do something that I've never done before. If you can give me a vector on how to get further down the road, I'd appreciate it. Thanks again. Here's the link:





Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Dave LaRonde
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 9:23:18 pm

Well, that's just too cool; I really ought to learn this YouTube stuff.

Okay, it's what I suspected it was: a nested comp, used over and over in the main comp.

Here's the big question: are there points in time in the main comp where this nested comp is NOT visible on the screen? Even for one frame? I bet there is, and here's what you do:
  • In the nested comp, make sure the timeline cursor is home, at 00:00:00:00.
  • Close ALL comps.
  • In your AE Preferences, you're really going to have to dig for a setting that says, "Synchronize all time-related items". Make sure the check box is checked.
  • Open the main comp and that nested comp.
  • In the main comp, place the timeline cursor at the time when the first nested comp layer is no longer visible.
  • Go to the nested comp. You'll note that the timeline cursor has moved: it's at the time that corresponds to its position in the main comp. This will be the out point of your FIRST Photo layer in this comp, and the IN Point for the SECOND photo layer for this nested comp.
  • Highlight the first photo layer and set an out point: Option-] Mac, Alt-] Win. That's the right square bracket key.
  • Move the timeline cursor ahead one frame only.
  • Add your second photo to the comp. Move it to the timeline cursor's position by hitting the [ ke, Mac/Win. That's the left square bracket key.
  • Go to the main comp. Navigate to the point in time when the second picture leaves the screen.
  • Go back to the nested comp. Repeat the process of setting an out point, moving one frame, adding a new photo and moving it to the timeline cursor's position.
  • Repeat as many times as necessary.

That oughta do it.

By now you've painfully learned that AE is one of these "learn to walk before you run" applications. Here's a good place to learn to walk:
http://blogs.adobe.com/toddkopriva/2010/01/getting-started-with-after-eff.h...

Be sure to check out all the links in that document. A seasoned editor can grasp the concepts rather quickly... and good luck!

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


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Kevin Camp
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 9:30:38 pm

it's unfortunate that the same pre-comp was used for each image in the main comp... they really should have had a pre-comp for each, so they would all be independent.

i see 2 options. since, in the main comp, it didn't look like you ever saw two image pre-comp at the same time, you could time out each image in the image pre-comp.

or you could duplicate the image pre-comp in the project window, so you have one for each image placeholder in the main comp (the way it should have been done). then, start replacing those in the main comp...

i would go the second route. just find the image comp in the main project window (if you have the image com popen, just right-click in the gray area around the preview and choose 'reveal in project'). once you find it, select it and duplicate it (edit>duplicate) as many times as there are instances of it in the main comp (if it is used 10x in the main comp dup it 10x). ae will add a number after each duplicate.

now go bck to the main comp. select the second instance of the image comp in the timeline, then in the project window select the image comp with a 2 at the end, hoold the option (mac) or alt (pc) key and drag the comp from the project window to the timeline to replace it. do that for each of the image comps so that each has a unique comp.

now if you change the image in say image comp 2, it should only effect the image placeholder for image comp 2, and not any of the others.

Kevin Camp
Senior Designer
KCPQ, KMYQ & KRCW


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Kevin Camp
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 9:32:39 pm

ask two ae guys, get two ae answers....

:)

Kevin Camp
Senior Designer
KCPQ, KMYQ & KRCW


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Dave LaRonde
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 9:36:58 pm

There are usually a couple of ways to skin a cat in AE....

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


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Andre Anthonio
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 5, 2010 at 2:13:31 am

Dave:

I followed your steps but was not successfuly. I may have misunderstood something along the way. If you can stomach it, I've prepared another video to show you the steps I made following your instructions. I should mention that I tried Kevin's method and it worked perfectly. So, I'm in good shape (for the moment at least). So, to the extent you had time, I'd like to know if I followed something wrong in your instructions and if I could consider your technic in the future, etc. Thanks again. (Oh, and what was not included in the video, ("Synchronize all time-related items")...that box was already checked but I did follow that step to make sure, as well.

Andre

Here's the new link:







Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Dave LaRonde
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 5, 2010 at 2:43:39 pm

I apologize, but I'm under a time crunch. The whole idea behind my method was to make that nested comp change photographs when it wasn't seen.

However, it relies on the nested comp being in sync with the main comp. If, for example, the main comp always uses each the nested comp beginning at start of the nested comp -- 00:00:00:00 of the nested comp, it isn't going to work.

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


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Andre Anthonio
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 4, 2010 at 9:56:24 pm

Kevin:

I've been wrestling with this one since about 6:00 a.m. At one point, I tried to do what I think is they way you are describing; basically, copying the comp and the "presets" within in them (and I'm not sure the term I am using "preset" is actually the correct term; but, within every layer there's another layer within it, one for motion, the other for effects, masking, etc. The point is I copied everything into a new layer, then renamed the new independent layer, then had planned on doing that...about 20 times....since I've got at least 20 football players on this youth football team. BUT two things happened: 1) I couldn't get the new independent layer (clip length on timeline) the same length as the old one I was replacing, and 2) When I double clicked on the new layer, the new different photo would appear there (I could see it which was assuring). But, the photo wouldn't show when I scrubbed through the new compilation from the beginning. I was thinking that I needed to render but wasn't sure. In the end, these two factors discouraged me; and so it was at that point I went online to look for answers and for several hours before reaching out to the Forum. I should also mention (for what it's worth) is that took myself through the online courses this morning at video co-pilot.net which were very helpful but didn't get into (I think) this specific situation. That's the extent of my AE experience outside editing but I think I could really get into it. Thanks for your response. I'm going to go right back at it and see where it may lead. I'll update later. Thanks again.

Andre

Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Andre Anthonio
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 5, 2010 at 2:19:34 am

Kevin:

It worked! I'm out of steam for the moment but I'm going to take the project further tommorrow first thing. But, I copied/duplicated the composition, just like your instructions, then dragged the copied comp in to the timeline; then changed the picture of each of the new comp clips and none of the other independent clips were effected. I really think holding the "alt" key down when dragging heped me a lot. I think I was missing that step in my earlier efforts. Many thanks.

Andre

Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Michael Szalapski
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 5, 2010 at 2:19:27 pm

Glad those two gents were able to help.
Welcome to the world of AE. If you haven't already, you might consider going through the basics. Once you get them down there are more in-depth options.
I, personally, really enjoyed Total Training's AE DVD's.

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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Andre Anthonio
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 5, 2010 at 3:13:30 pm

Thanks, Michael. I'm all over the tutorials. Any more details on the "Total Training AE" DVD tutorials to which you referred? Thx.

Andre Antonio
PHATeFX Panama


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Michael Szalapski
Re: How do I stop a photo from being repeated in a repeated layer?
on Nov 7, 2010 at 4:19:33 am

Here you go. AE hasn't changed much fundamentally since version 7, so any of their DVD's from 7 through 10 (CS5) should be useful.

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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