Prepping your After Effects files
It is important that you keep your files clean and tidy so that we can make any quick changes that the brand need, without having to reorganise your files first! Here is exactly how you do that...
First things first, let’s make sure there are no unnecessary files in your project. To do this, select your MAIN video compositions (you can do this by holding down the cmd button and selecting them), then, head to File > Dependencies > Reduce Project. This will reduce your project down to only the assets used in your main comps.
If you have been working in our preset file structure (as you should be!) the next step should be really simple. Save your project and close it. All we need is your After Effects Project and any assets that you have modified (i.e. the last two folders in your pack), please remove the other folders from the pack as we don’t need them. Name the folder with your name and the project name and zip it up like so 👇
Depending on your file size, you can email the zipped file (prefered) or Wetransfer it to email@example.com, with your name and the project name in the email subject.
Precomps can make or break a project when it comes to organising. There are good ways to use them, and terrible ways to use them. Here at Vidsy, our clients often ask us to reformat your vids (for example from square to portrait), or supply a range of languages. Having a lot of badly labeled precomps spread out in different places in your project, makes this process very difficult for us!
If a precomp is essential, make sure you:
- Name it appropriately (Animated_Logo is better than Precomp3)
- Put it into the right folder (eg. Video 01 > Precomps)
It is important to use our AE preset from your asset pack so that all the files we get back are organised in the same way! Check out the tips below to see the best way to organise your project.
- Always give your precomps friendly names (Animated_Logo rather than Precomp3)
- Put precomps in the right folders
- Colour coordinate your layers to make them easier to understand
- Cut layers where they start and end (If they fade in and out for example)
- Label any masking layers as MASK and change the colour
- Never scale text up using scale keyframes (use text size) unless you are animating in and out (But always keep the readable text at 100% scale)
- Try animating text using the text animator tools rather than duplicating and masking layers. This makes it easier for us to change any copy.