JULY 11, 2001
Parent-child relationships aren't limited to footage layers. You can also define relationships between light and camera layers in 3D compositions. This allows a camera to track individual elements in a composition and lights to keep objects illuminated regardless of their movement.
Establishing parent-child relationships is just a matter of dragging a target icon from the source layer to another layer's parenting column in the timelineor you can use scripting (called "Expressions"), which we'll address below.
For example, you can link the opacity of one layer to the scale of another, while the tracking of path-based text can be linked to the rotation of another layer.
To create these types of expressions, you drag the expression picker from the property that is to be animated to the property that the animation will be based on. After Effects automatically creates the expression for you. You can also drag the picker between the Timeline and Effect Controls windows.
After Effects is a pleasure to work with, and, of course, its features make it one of the all-time great applications for video professionals, whether you're new to After Effects or thinking of upgrading from version 4.1, whether you use the standard edition or the Production Bundle. It belongs at the core of every video professional's suite of tools.
Adobe After Effects 5 is available for $1,499 for the Production Bundle and $649 for the standard version. Upgrades from the 3.x/4.x Production Bundle to the 5.0 Production Bundle Cost $299. Upgrades from the 3.x/4.x standard version to the 5.0 standard version cost $199.
For more information, visit http://www.adobe.com.
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Dave Nagel is the producer of Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; host of several World Wide User Groups, including Synthetik Studio Artist, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, Adobe LiveMotion, Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; and executive producer of the Digital Media Net family of publications.