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Forums Adobe After Effects Text style copy paste or save then apply?

  • Text style copy paste or save then apply?

  • Mark Palmos

    March 5, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    Hello guys,

    I have a client who keeps changing their mind… (sound familiar?)
    I have a LOT of simple text animations, and each time they say, “hmmm, maybe make the font blue and make the drop shadow darker…” I have to change several parameters to each and every text animation.

    I looked, searched and have not found a way to save the style of a font – colour, size, kerning, leading, stroke colour, thickness, shadow, etc…

    Is there a way around this seemingly obvious area for automation?


  • John Cuevas

    March 5, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    The script pt-TextEdit will cover some of the functions you need. Color, size, stroke.

    For some of the others like shadow, I would create a master text layer add the the shadow effect- and then on my child layers have the shadow effect controlled by the master via expressions. You could also add a line spacing animator on your master text layer and use and expression on the child layers to change the leading also, same with tracking.

    Johnny Cuevas, Editor

    “I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work.”
    —THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.

  • Ridley Walker

    March 5, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    Not exactly what you want, but there is a terrific script that does much of what you need.

    Edit: John beat me to the punch!

  • Roland R. Kahlenberg

    March 5, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    Most of the properties in the Character & Paragraph panels are not available in the Timeline. Hence they cannot be saved as Animation Presets. Your best bet is to duplicate the text layer, to serve as a backup, each time a change occurs.


    Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

    Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
    & Adobe After Effects ACE/ACI (version 7)

  • Roland R. Kahlenberg

    March 5, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    [John Cuevas] “The script pt-TextEdit will cover some of the functions you need. Color, size, stroke. “

    This is Good!


    Intensive mocha & AE Training in Singapore and Other Dangerous Locations

    Imagineer Systems (mocha) Certified Instructor
    & Adobe After Effects ACE/ACI (version 7)

  • Mark Palmos

    March 5, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    Hi guys, thanks for the responses.

    I have not fiddled with scripts before, but the 3rd party plugin Ridley and John mentioned,

    Is exactly what I would want AE to do… looks like a very nice little programme. I reckon AE could very easily implement a style saving/applying feature, so I’m going to request it at Adobe.

    Tx again,


  • Paul Roper

    March 5, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    You can actually do most of this in AE, and I almost always do whenever I’ve got a few comps with text – I assume that the client will want to change the text color/size etc.

    First, make a master control layer with a null and add some expression controls: colors, sliders – depending on how many things you want to automate in your text.

    Then, on your text layer, you just need to add an animator to the text, and within that, add fill color, stroke color, stroke width, tracking, scale, etc. Then option-click the relevant value (eg. fill color) and pick-whip the master control’s color or slider value. If you do this with all your text (or just copy and paste this animator), then everything will be linked to your palette of colors and values on your master null. Your text doesn’t have to animate to make use of animators!

    You can’t change the font using this though, which is a pain. You also can’t change the point size of the text, but you can change the scaling which kind of achieves the same thing.

    I use this same ‘master control’ technique for a whole load of things – line widths, line colors, etc. I find it REALLY helps when I have dozens of comps and the client wants to ‘just change the line width by a couple of pixels’.

    – Paul

  • Mark Palmos

    March 5, 2013 at 10:30 pm

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks for the suggestion and instructions. I think the scripting thing is a little above my head, though I may try it when I have a spare couple of hours… it would be very useful to deal with bulk tweaks on this project though!


  • Joseph W. Bourke

    March 5, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    Mark –

    I know all those changes are a PITA, but I do hope you make it clear to the client that changes which aren’t your mistake are billable “client changes”. Since I made that a policy some time ago, I find that many of the trouble clients are perfectly happy with the first or maybe second round of changes.

    I just make it painfully clear that they can have a couple of changes on me, but after that, the meter is running. Of course, with a repeat client who you get regular work from, it’s also sometimes good policy to give them the freebie, but put it in the final bill that it’s a discount. It makes them see what you’re giving back…

    Joe Bourke
    Owner/Creative Director
    Bourke Media

  • Mark Palmos

    March 5, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    Hi Joseph,
    Yeah, I typically am very straighforward with them, though in this case, my client is a PR agency and the PITA is my client’s client… which makes it a bit more tricky since I know that telling them I will charge more (which I have) means they have to then speak to their client. Though that is fair, it does mean that my choice puts them in that situation.

    Hopefully they will be happy with the latest font changes now…



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