Hi, this is definitely a newbie question. How do I make an animation that I can bring into Final Cut Pro, and it will go in front of the video that already exists? Meaning, I don't want a black background. I only want the animation itself to be brought in, and have already existing footage (in FCP) to be behind it.
Do I have to bring the video itself into AE? I didn't think so.. is there an easier way to do this?
I'm not sure what the codecs one whould choose for FCP, but what you want to do is render out your animation with an alpha channel(if your comp has transparency). Ctrl+Shift+/ (Windows) or Command+Shift+/ (Mac OS) is the command to add a composition to the render queue.
Check out the rendering tutorial from Andrew Kramer:
"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.
You need to render (Don't export! Use the AE Render Queue!) in a quicktime codec that supports Alpha Channels. They are ProRes 4444, which is available only in FCP 7 and AE must be installed on the machine running FCP; PNG, which is 10-bit; and Animation, which is available to any machine on the planet with QT installed.
After you add the comp to the Render Queue, open the Output module controls, select your quicktime movie in the codec of your choice, Millions (or perhaps Trillions) of Colors +, RGB+Alpha, and STRAIGHT, not premultiplied, for use in FCP.
The chances are excellent you'll have to render in FCP. That's life.
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