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The 'Pan Behind' Tool in Adobe After EffectsKeyframing content beneath a mask to create a magnify effect
The key to this process is simply knowing which tool to use and which parameters to keyframe. The tool is the Pan Behind tool; and the parameters to keyframe are the Mask Shape and the layer's Position. And here's how it works.
Basic project setup
For our sample project, we'll create a composition that simulates a magnify effect on a layer, in this case magnifying the words on a fictitious newspaper, using a mask, two layers and a simple Expression. (You can download my sample project by clicking here.)
To do this, we'll have two layers on top of a black canvas: a newspaper layer at reduced size ("newspaperbg") and a magnified duplicate of the newspaper layer in the foreground ("newspaperforeground").
I'll scale the foreground up to about 180 percent for my magnify effect, and I'll make it into a 3D layer and angle it just a little bit (X Rotation -24, Y Rotation +27) to add a little interest. And I'll turn down the opacity of the background layer ("newspaperbg") to about 34 percent to de-emphasize it. Something like this:
To my foreground layer I'll add my elliptical mask and feather the mask by 10 pixels.
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