After Effects Chapter 6 | More About Typography

Did you know that book trailers are all the rage in the literacy world right now? Do you want to learn how to make one? If you’ve been following this series we talk about the key points of Adobe After Effects and how it will help you create a book trailer or project of your own.

Last week in the Adobe After Effects series we talked all about animating your characters. This week we’re going to be discussing typography and how to make text effects that make your video stand out.

How to Add Text:

How to add text to your project

You can add text to your composition by using text layers. Earlier in the lesson we talked about point and paragraph text. Point text is when you enter a single word or line of characters and paragraph text is when you enter one or more paragraphs.

Note! The typography you select should be easy to read across different browsers and screen sizes. Often simple is best. You’ll always want to keep in mind your branding image. Are you known for your whimsical style or modern witty prose. The font you select should coordinate with your brand while also be easily readable.

Text Tools

To add Point Text:

  • Choose Layer > New > Text. A new text layer is created and an insertion point for the Horizontal Type tool appears in the center of the Composition panel.
  • Double-click a Type tool. A new text layer is created and an insertion point for the appropriate type tool appears in the center of the Composition panel.
  • Select the Horizontal Type tool  or the Vertical Type tool , and then click in the Composition panel to set an insertion point for the text.
  • Enter text characters by typing. Press Enter on the main keyboard (Windows) or Return (Mac OS) to begin a new line.

To add Paragraph Text:

  • Select the Horizontal Type tool or the Vertical Type tool
  • Do one of the following in the Composition panel to create a text layer:
  • Drag to define a bounding box from a corner, or Alt-drag (Windows) or Option-drag (Mac OS) to define a bounding box around a center point.
  • Enter text by typing. Press Enter on the main keyboard (Windows) or Return (Mac OS) to begin a new paragraph. Press Shift+Enter on the main keyboard (Windows) or Shift+Return (Mac OS) to create a soft carriage return, which begins a new line without beginning a new paragraph. If you enter more text than can fit in the bounding box, the overflow icon  appears on the bounding box.

Animating Text:

If you’re familiar with Adobe’s other programs be sure to know that you can copy text from other applications such as Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, or any text editor, and paste it into a text layer in After Effects. Useful right?

You can move text around by using the pointer tool in the Composition panel. This is especially useful when you want to make certain animations or to simply change the position of the text.

You can also browse and apply text animation presets just like you would to add effects to a certain layer. All you have to do is browse through After Effects using the Effects & Presets panel. These animations will make your text stand out like the Scribble effect that makes your text look like a hand drawn, traditional animation. There are hundreds of effects to browse through and you can even make your own by altering each effect.

Text Effect Presets

Each text layer has a set of Transformation Properties and just like your footage it can be toggled with and animated. You can Scale a text layer to make it larger or Rotate it to spin it round and round like on a carousel. There are many online tutorials that show you a step-by-step process of typography. Some of these tutorials were mentioned earlier on in the lesson.

We will go over a specific type of typography once the Adobe After Effects basics are over. These lessons will include motion tracking, 2D animation and text that will make your book trailer stand out. Next week is the final After Effects tutorial. It will include a review of all that we have learned over these few weeks and a few treats to make your After Effects experience an enjoyable one.

Let us know what you would like to learn next! There are endless possibilities in After Effects, so if you have a request visit us on the KidLit.TV Facebook or tweet @KidLitTV_NYC

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