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Ed BlackfordExporting Growing Object
by on Dec 3, 2009 at 4:12:33 am

Hello. I created a flourish and exported it via render que as a .mov file. When I try to import it into after effects now it will only import as a project, not footage. When I import the flourishes from videocopilot's evolution it allows me to import them as footage. Does anyone know what I need to do differently?


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Dave JohnsonRe: Exporting Growing Object
by on Dec 3, 2009 at 6:53:52 pm

In order to answer, it would be heplful to know:

  • what codec the MOV your trying to import is in
  • how exactly you're importing it (drag & drop, file>import menu, etc.)
  • what version of AE you're using
  • any other details you can provide


It's hard to say without much info, but my guess is it's one of two things ... either there is an issue with the file and AE can only read it as a project file or you have a preference set somewhere that makes your default import type project instead of media.

Sorry if I misunderstood your question.


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Ed BlackfordRe: Exporting Growing Object
by on Dec 3, 2009 at 8:19:13 pm

codec = mpeg-4
importing by file>import
AE CS4

I was following the tutorial on forgingfire.com (if you are familiar with that) on how to make an animated flourish. He forgot to tell us how to export the file correctly. I figured out how to import it as footage after working with it for a while but now it imports with the flourish white and has a black background which i didnt want because now I can't colorize.

Maybe the question I should ask is in what format should I export my flourish?


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Dave LaRondeRe: Exporting Growing Object
by on Dec 3, 2009 at 8:48:06 pm

[Ed Blackford] "Maybe the question I should ask is in what format should I export my flourish?"

Not an mpeg 4, that's for sure! Since I'm a Mac guy, I'd RENDER -- not export, but render using the AE Render Queue -- a quicktime movie, either in the PNG or the Animation codec. At best quality, they're lossless, and they support alpha channels. Here, read about the Render Queue:

http://help.adobe.com/en_US/AfterEffects/9.0/WS3878526689cb91655866c1103a4f...

Why not mp4's? Read on:

Dave's Stock Answer #1:

If the footage you imported into AE is any kind of the following -- footage in an HDV acquisition codec, MPEG1, MPEG2, mp4, m2t, H.261 or H.264 -- you need to convert it to a different codec.

These kinds of footage use temporal, or interframe compression. They have keyframes at regular intervals, containing complete frame information. However, the frames in between do NOT have complete information. Interframe codecs toss out duplicated information.

In order to maintain peak rendering efficiency, AE needs complete information for each and every frame. But because these kinds of footage contain only partial information, AE freaks out, resulting in a wide variety of problems.

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


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Dave JohnsonRe: Exporting Growing Object
by on Dec 3, 2009 at 8:59:05 pm

Personally, I consider MPEG4 a web delivery format only (not a working/intermediary or mastering format) so I never import MP4s into AE ... for details as to why, look at any of Dave LaRonde's posts that include his "stock AE answer #1".

There many good formats and codecs you can use to render out your animation ... you just need to choose one with an alpha channel to resolve the black background issue ... I usually use Animation, although I've also started using PNG a lot lately (PNG lossless video codec, not a PNG sequence).


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Ed BlackfordRe: Exporting Growing Object
by on Dec 3, 2009 at 9:34:57 pm

Thanks both Daves. I always use Add to Render Queue but don't really know much about different video files. Now I am going to start reading up on this so I don't have to ask about them anymore. Thanks a lot guys


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