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Copy and Paste Not Converting Mask Path to Shape Layer

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Scott ClementsCopy and Paste Not Converting Mask Path to Shape Layer
by on Aug 24, 2012 at 10:37:33 am

Hi,

I made some text in photoshop and converted into into a shape in order to manually tweak the font. When I bring it into after effects, it comes in as a layer with mask paths. I don't know how to manipulate the stroke and fill now (it's probably not even possible with the mask paths), so I think I need to transform these many mask paths (that make up all the letters of my words) into shape layers or preferably one editable shape layer, so I can change the stroke and fill at once. I looked around the internet and someone kept saying make a new shape layer, then "copy and paste". However, when I do this, all I get is a shape layer with a bunch of masks that I can't adjust the stroke and fill on. I'm relatively new to AE, so could be missing something really obvious. Can anyone help, please? Thanks.

-Scott


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keith mcgregorRe: Copy and Paste Not Converting Mask Path to Shape Layer
by on Aug 24, 2012 at 4:09:03 pm

I suppose you could add the stroke effect? Effects/Generate/Stroke and it attaches itself to masks, which you choose from the dropdown. You should be able to have multiple stroke effects on the one layer if you wanted some to be different colors than others.
But I am unsure how much you want to manipulate said stroke. This way you can have the stroke as an effect, yet still have the fill layer.
Also, did you try selecting the paths in PS and copy from there to paste in AE? I have done it with Illustrator many times and it keeps the paths, the millions there might be, and I can still tweak the masks.
Or if all else fails, use 2 layers, one for the stroke and one for the fill?

-Keith


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Scott ClementsRe: Copy and Paste Not Converting Mask Path to Shape Layer
by on Aug 24, 2012 at 4:23:06 pm

Hi, Keith. Thanks for your help. I guess I didn't try clicking on the actually path in the path window in Photoshop and copy and pasting into AE. Not sure if that would give me a proper shape in After Effects though. I'll try it. What I ended up doing was opening the photoshop file in Illustrator and then exporting from there and opening it in After Effects and then using the "create shapes from vector layer" command. It wasn't ideal though, because Illustrator did a weird resize of the layer and I had to mess with it to get it to match. I wish AE would be able to handle Photoshop vector layers in the say way. Why Photoshop still, after all these years, doesn't have better vector capabilities is a mystery to me.


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John CuevasRe: Copy and Paste Not Converting Mask Path to Shape Layer
by on Aug 25, 2012 at 12:48:13 pm

There is a very long & tedious method to do this if you are so inclined.

Bring in your text as masks. On the Menu Bar choose Layer -> Shape Layer. Twirl it open and choose Add - Group(empty). Now choose Add - Path(when I do this I get an error, but it still works). Go to your text/mask layer and open it up(Press M-that should open all the mask paths), copy the first mask and paste it into the path you created on your shape layer.

Now you would repeat the create mask create mask copy/paste step for every mask in your text(told you it was tedious). When you are done, you would add fills, gradients to your shape layer. Letters with holes like A or E...copy those mask too, for me they correctly subtracted.

Here's a project I made showing my work for a few letters (not sure it's going to help, it's just copy and pasting)---4582_maskstoshapes.aep.zip

Is there a reason not to create the text in AE and just use Layer -> "Create Shapes from Text"?

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"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.


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Scott ClementsRe: Copy and Paste Not Converting Mask Path to Shape Layer
by on Aug 25, 2012 at 5:13:36 pm

Thanks, John.

"Is there a reason not to create the text in AE and just use Layer -> "Create Shapes from Text"?"

In hindsight, that's what I should have done in the first place. I just like designing things in Photoshop - but didn't realise it was going to be such an issue. I think there's some sort of political reason why Photoshop doesn't have easier to use vectors - I think Adobe is maybe afraid of it killing off Illustrator. Or maybe I'm just a big conspiracy theorist. It is weird though that you can't easily import Photoshop vectors into AE like you can with Illustrator vectors.

Nuke Compositor, London UK


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