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Animating masks and shatter effect

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Joe Stas
Animating masks and shatter effect
on Feb 3, 2011 at 6:08:14 pm

I have a couple of questions regarding masks. I've recently started a prokect where I have to use moving footage and place objects behind people.. For example, some text. Now, I've been animating a mask frame by frame on the text layer and setting it to 'subtract'. Is this the normal way to do this or is there an easier way? I haven't figured it out yet but I always hope there is a way just to track around the person and then apply that animated mask to any layers that I want to place 'behind' the subject. Can anyone advise me? Is there a 'best' way to handle a task like this?

Secondly, when I animate a mask on my text layer to place behind a person and then add the 'shatter' effect to the text, the mask no longer seems to operate properly. There are pieces of shattered text inside the mask and there are other pieces that aren't showing up outside of it. I don't really understand why this is happening but any advice would be appreciated.

I'm still learning so excuse me if I'm committing heinous crimes somewhere. Thanks ever so much for reading and I look forward to seeing any responses.

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Michael Szalapski
Re: Animating masks and shatter effect
on Feb 3, 2011 at 7:52:42 pm

For cutting people out (AKA rotoscoping) and putting text behind them, I tend to use a duplicate of the layer with the person on it, mask the person out, and sandwich the text layer between the two footage layers.

This page [link] will provide you with tons of great tips and tricks to make rotoscoping easier and faster.

As for your masking issues with the Shatter effect, you have to understand the rendering order that AE uses...but I think if you do what I suggested, you won't have to worry about it. Basically, this is yet another time when precomposing is your friend.

- 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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Joe Stas
Re: Animating masks and shatter effect
on Feb 7, 2011 at 12:23:19 pm

Perfect. Thanks so much for helping. you've saved me a lot of time!

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