By T. Meyer

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If you like, type t and reduce its Opacity as well. 38 Finally, nudge the position of your solid up or down to nicely balance the frame. There is no right or wrong answer; you could try the middle, centered behind the photos or title, or acting as an underscore to anchor the photos. Save your project at this point. Quick Effects 36–38 Create a Solid layer, color it red, and use it as a graphical element to tie together the three flower photos. You’ve created a nice little animated composition here, but it looks a touch flat.

After Effects will create and open a comp that is the same size as your file, flattened to a full-frame single layer without access to the individual elements. 1 Select your Sources folder in the Project panel, and type Ci (Li) to import a file. Navigate to the Lesson 01 folder you copied from this book’s disc, open it, then open the 01_Sources folder inside that. psd and select it. Turn your attention to the bottom of this dialog, and click on the Import As popup. Here you see options of whether to treat this file as a single source or as a composition.

For now, choose Merged Layers, and click OK. 4 Repeat step 1, but this time in step 2 select Choose Layer under the Layer Options in the second dialog. Pick a layer from this popup, such as Butterfly. Underneath it, the Footage Dimensions popup will become active. If you select Document Size, After Effects will create a footage item the size of the entire layered file, with this one layer placed where it was in the original file. We prefer the option Layer Size, which auto-trims the layer to just the pixels needed.

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