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Live shape path from Source text?

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Kyle Maven
Live shape path from Source text?
on Oct 9, 2019 at 8:32:15 pm

I am using path elements(stroke, dashes, trim paths, repeater, ect.) to create an animation that I want to duplicate for a bunch of title slides. I want to have one source text layer where I can type anything into, and another shape layer with path(s) that updates automatically based on what the text says. I am newish to expressions so I am not sure if this is even possible. I am just trying to refrain from using "Create Shapes from Text" and moving all those shape groups into the animated layer and re-positioning them.

If there isn't a way to do this with expressions, are there any scripts available to update the shape paths with a button press?

thanks in advance!

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Alex Printz
Re: Live shape path from Source text?
on Oct 10, 2019 at 2:06:50 pm

I don't believe there is a way to do this with expressions, and I cannot think of a script/plugin that does this. Your best bet might be to do it in Illustrator as the styles you want, and link the AI files inside of AE. Just updated the AI files, and it should update in AE. Mask appropriately.

Alex Printz
Mograph Designer

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Dan Ebberts
Re: Live shape path from Source text?
on Oct 10, 2019 at 4:32:39 pm

I'm not sure that this is anywhere near what you're looking for, but if you apply this to the path of a shape layer, it should draw a rectangle around your text layer:

pad = 10;
L = thisComp.layer("TEXT");
r = L.sourceRectAtTime(time,false);
ul = fromComp(L.toComp([r.left - pad, - pad]));
ur = fromComp(L.toComp([r.left+r.width + pad, - pad]));
lr = fromComp(L.toComp([r.left+r.width + pad, + pad]));
ll = fromComp(L.toComp([r.left - pad, + pad]));


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Chris Scalzo
Re: Live shape path from Source text?
on Oct 11, 2019 at 3:36:52 pm

I am not sure if this will help you, but I have done a create shapes manually inside my animation comp and set all paths to trace off the path on index 1. this let me click create paths and send layer to the top of comp and have it update everywhere. Then if I did a couple times, I could even hot switch the linking to the top most traced mask, on the topmost layer just by moving to the top.


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