Hand Lettering in Motion | Jake Bartlett | Skillshare

Hand Lettering in Motion

Jake Bartlett, Motion Designer

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11 Lessons (1h 5m)
    • 1. Course Trailer

    • 2. What You'll Need

    • 3. Breaking Down The Lettering in Photoshop

    • 4. Getting Comfy

    • 5. And Cozy

    • 6. Animation Pt. 1

    • 7. Animation Pt. 2

    • 8. Animation Pt. 3

    • 9. Exporting a GIF

    • 10. Exporting a Video

    • 11. Thanks!

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About This Class


Do you love hand lettering? Have you ever wanted to add some motion to your designs? This class is for anyone who wants to learn the basics of animation, but never had the opportunity! I'll show you step by step my process of how to break down hand lettering for animating in After Effects, and learn the fundamentals of motion design. You'll be able to follow along even if you've never opened the program before.

By the end of the course, you'll have a completely original animation that you can share with the world. I'll see you in class!


Class Outline

  • Animating hand lettering. In his step-by-step animation tutorial, Jake will teach you how to use Adobe After Effects to bring your hand lettering to life. You’ll follow along as Jake shows you his creative process, sharing his keyboard shortcuts and other tips to make your animation simple, efficient, and fun. This animator class is for anyone with an interest in the art form who wants to take their skills to the next level.
  • Creating your own. You’ll be encouraged to choose a word or phrase to send as a greeting to a friend. You’ll post your phrase on the class project page, and then follow up when you’ve finished your hand lettering, to show Jake and your class your initial art before you begin to animate it. By showcasing every step of your creative process, you’ll have multiple opportunities to gain valuable feedback and boost your self-confidence!
  • Breaking down the lettering. Jake will show you how to process your artwork in both Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, so no matter what program you’ve used to create your lettering, you are able to participate. You will learn to resize your artwork, and how to break your phrase down into layers so that you can animate it most effectively in After Effects. Finally, Jake will show you how to order all of your components correctly to stay organized and ensure nothing is lost in translation as you move between programs.
  • Working with After Effects. Jake will introduce you to After Effects, and show you how to create a standard workspace so that you stay focused inside a dashboard layout that looks like his. You’ll learn how to import your art into the program, and how to customize it correctly so that you can work with every individual layer. Jake will also explain options for zooming in and out of your image, changing gridline views, and other tips that will keep you from feeling overwhelmed as you begin his animator courses.
  • Setting up your composition. You will learn how to customize your composition, set your width and height, control your frame rate, and change your time code. Jake will introduce you to easy-to-remember keyboard shortcuts that will help you work seamlessly and teach you how to move your layers or lock them, depending on your project’s needs.
  • Animating type. Jake will show you a number of ways that you can animate your type – giving you plenty of creative options to choose from as you begin to make your class project. You’ll begin by learning to make your characters scale up or rotate, and to smooth their transitions as they move. You’ll also learn how to get your characters to animate at different rates, and to use anchor points to change how your animation plays out.
  • Exporting files. With Jake’s guidance, you’ll learn to make short and long hand lettering animation files, giving you the skills you need to create anything from an internet greeting card to full-length whiteboard animation videos. Jake will also show you how to export both .gifs and videos to ensure that everything stays neat as you move your final product out of After Effects and onto your desktop, YouTube, or any other program that you’d like.

Looking for more inspiration? Head here to discover more classes on hand lettering.


1. Course Trailer: Hey, I'm Jake Bartlett. In this course, I'm going to show you how to animate hand lettering. This class is for anyone who's interested in after effects animation, but has never had the opportunity to learn the software. I'll take you step-by-step through my process of animating hand lettered text. I'll see you in class. 2. What You'll Need: For the class project, you'll be picking a word or phrase that can be used as a greeting to send to a friend. Feel free to be as creative as you'd like with the phrase. It could be something funny, playing off of a pun, or be straightforward like a typical greeting card. Once you have your phrase picked out, create a class project on the project page and post your phrase there. Then once you're done with your artwork, post that progress update as well. If you already have a hand lettering that you'd like to use that doesn't fit the category of this project, that's totally fine. The important thing is that you have hand lettering to work with for this project. Once you have your hand lettering completed, you can move on to the first lesson. 3. Breaking Down The Lettering in Photoshop: At this point, you should have your hand lettering completed and open it up in the software that you created it in. Now, my wife gave me this awesome hand lettering to work with for this class, and she created it in Photoshop. But what I do inside a Photoshop is going to be the exact same process as what you would do if your artwork was vector inside of Illustrator. Even if you made it a different way, you can still follow along. Now the way that this artwork was given to me was in three different layers, one for each color. Now, before we go any further, I really have to stress the fact that you need to make a duplicate of your original artwork before you do any editing. The reason you want to duplicate file is so that you can always go back to your original in case anything goes wrong. Absolutely duplicate your file at this point before moving forward. Next, we need to make sure the file is the right size for working inside of After Effects. Chances are you worked at a pretty high resolution when you created your hand lettering. It might be set to something high like 300 dpi. First, let's just resize the document, go to image, image size. The first thing you should change is your resolution. If your resolution is set to something above 72, make sure you change this down to 72 because that's the resolution After Effects works in. Then you can change the units to pixels to get an idea of how large your document would be. I recommend that you work with something where the long edge of your artwork is around 2,000 pixels wide. You don't have to animate in a landscape layout. If you designed this to be portrait, After Effects can work with that just fine. I resize this artwork to fit a three by two ratio so that I can scale this down to 800 by 600 on my final export. Once you have your artwork size the way it should be, go ahead and hit "Okay." Now we can move on to breaking down our artwork. Now the way that you prep your artwork is going to depend on how you want to animate it. I know that I'm going to want to animate each individual character of each word. I want to break up these three layers so that each one of these letters is easily separated. But if you're planning on animating whole words at a time, you would have a lot less breaking down to do. If that's the case, you can still follow what I'm doing, but just apply it to an entire word instead of individual characters. The first step is to make a flat version of these three layers. I'll start by selecting all three of my layers and grouping them. I'm going to rename this folder so that I can always come back to these three layers if I need to. Then I'll duplicate this group by dragging it down to the new layer icon. Then I want to flatten this folder by going to Layer, scrolling down to the bottom and say Merge Group. Now if I hide my original folder, we have a flat layer with all the colors merged into one. We'll use this layer to break down all the individual characters of each word. That way each character, will have all the colors merged on a single layer. Let's start with Lorem. By the way, if you don't know what this phrase means, it's basically randomly generated Latin that's used for filler text when you're making layout mark ups. A lot of times this phrase is the first sentence of that randomly generated text. My wife just thought that would be a fun little thing to make into an art print. Let's start with the first word. I'll again duplicate this layer by pressing "Command" or "Control J," and then I'll rename this Lorem, and I'll hide our flattened layer. Now depending on what type of text you've lettered, you have a few different options of how you could break the text down. For these three words, none of the letters are connected. We can easily just cut each one of these letters out of the original layer to separate the characters into their own. But for this first word, we have two sets of letters that are connected. To give us the most flexibility, I'm going to use vector masks on this first word. I'll start by deleting everything on this layer except for the word Lorem. I'll switch to the Polygonal Lasso Tool and make a quick selection around everything but that top word and press the "Delete" key. Next, I'll duplicate this layer again, rename it to L, then I'll zoom in. Switch to the pen tool, and make sure that we have path selected up here, and then draw a path around the L. Then I'll come up to Layer, Vector Mask, Current Path. This will make a vector mask out of the path that I just drew. Now the reason I'm using a vector mask is because After Effects supports it. When we bring this artwork in the After Effects, our masks will be preserved. I'm going to continue this process for the rest of the characters. I'll duplicate this layer, rename it O, bring it up, and then draw a path around the O. Now this is where it can be a little tricky. I want this layer to be as cleanly masked as possible so that when the O and the R are separated, it doesn't look too unnatural. I'll do my best to make a mask that follows the contour of the R. Now, how precise you want to be is completely up to you. But the cleaner the path, the better the result. Now that I have my mask, I'll go to Layer, Vector Mask, Current Path. If I turn off our original, you can see what that looks like. Now if you wanted, you could leave the O and the R together and have them as a single layer. But I know that I want to separate them, so that's how I'm going to do it. Now, to keep this same contour for the R, I'm going to duplicate this layer, rename it to R, and then just modify the mask path. I'll bring this over here, so that it goes all the way around the R. Probably, I'll have to add some points. That should be good. If I turn off my original, you can see that we have a little slight bit of transparency between the two. I'm going to grab this path and bring it over just a pixel. That looks good. All right. I'll duplicate this layer again, rename it E. Make sure it's turned on, and bring it to the top. You'll notice that I'm working in a reverse stack. This is how I prefer to work in after effects. Whatever order you have inside of Photoshop, is exactly how it's going to appear once we bring it in the After Effects. I begin my organization straight inside of Photoshop so that I have less work to do later on. Now, I'll make another path for the E. Again, try to get as close to that M as possible. I'll complete this path, and go to Layer, Vector Mask, Current Path. I'll duplicate this one again since I just need to modify it, rename it M, and then adjust my path. We get rid of some of these points. Then let's see what that looks like without. Yet we have a little bit of transparency again, so I'll fix that by offsetting this just a pixel. That looks pretty good. Then finally, we need to do the little accent marks at the top, so I'll rename this layer accent marks. Move it to the top, turn it on, and then draw a path around these, Layer, Vector Mask, Current Path, and now we have all the components of the first word. Great. Now we can get rid of this Lorem layer. We can go back to our original, and move on to the next word. Now this one is much simpler since none of the letters are connected. With my flat layer selected, I'll grab the Marquee tool, draw a box around the I, press "Apple J" or "Control J" in a PC to duplicate my selection from that layer, and then rename it I. If I turn this original off, you see that we have our I, right there. I'm going to do that for the rest of the word. There we go. Now these two words are going to be the exact same process. I'm not going to make you sit through this and watch me do every single character. But now you can see the two different approaches to breaking up letters. Now this word is really small, and since the letters are connected, I'm just going to make the whole word its own layer. I'll make a selection around it. Make sure I'm on my flat artwork layer, and then duplicate it and rename it to match the text. Now I'm going to do these other two words exactly the same way that I did Ipsum, but I'm not going to make you sit through it. All right. I'm done. If I turn off my flat layer, all my artwork is still there. I can click on any one of these layers and have them selected individually. Now that all my characters are broken up, I'll make sure that everything is in the right order and my layer is palette. This should be at the top, and then this follows it. This should be at the bottom, then this. Now they're in a reverse order from bottom to the top. Lorem, Ipsum, Dolor or Dolor, I know how you pronounce that, Sit and Amet. For anyone who actually speaks Latin, don't judge me. I have no idea how to pronounce Latin words. Now one last thing that I forgot to mention, is that if you created your artwork inside of CMYK, makes sure that you convert it to RGB before you bring it into After Effects. CMYK is intended for print, and RGB is for anything that's going to be on a display. It's what After Effects will be working in. Now, I know this seems like a lot of work up front, but it's going to make the entire process of animating inside of After Effects so much easier. I really recommend that you do all of this prep work beforehand, stay organized, rename every layer so that it matches exactly what the text is, so it's easily identifiable. Once all of that breakdown is done, you can get rid of this flat layer, keep your original artwork, and then save your PSD. That's all we have to do inside of Photoshop. 4. Getting Comfy: All right, now you can open up After Effects. If you've never used After Effects before, your layout is probably going to look something like this. If it doesn't look like this, you can come straight up to this little drop-down here under workspace and select "Standard". If standards still doesn't look like mine, you should be able to go to the drop-down again, say Reset Standard and After Effects will ask you if you're sure you want to reset, click on "Yes". It should reset to a layout that is similar to mine. Now there are tons of tools and tons of panels inside of After Effects just like Photoshop, just like Illustrator, and if you've never seen it before, it can be a little bit overwhelming. So I'm going to help you stay focused inside of this class by closing all of the panels we don't need. So up in the top right we have the info panel. We're not going to need that for this class, so if you click on these three little lines, the first option is to close panel. We're not going to be working with any audio, so we can close this panel as well. We will keep the preview panel and we're not going to need any effects or presets for this project, so we can close that one as well. That should leave us with just the project panel, the composition panel, the preview panel and our timeline. If any of these panels are missing from your layout, all you have to do is come up to the window drop-down, and check any of the panels that aren't open. So these ones with the check marks are the only ones we'll be using. The project panel is where we manage all of the assets that we're going to be using inside of After Effects. It's kind of like a file manager within After Effects, so I could bring in images, video or audio, and they would all be contained right here. Also anything that we generate inside of After Effects will show up in our project panel. So before we can do anything, we need to bring our artwork into After Effects. I'll go up to "File", "Import", "File". Then navigate to wherever your artwork is, select it and click on "Open". This will bring up a window that's allowing you to customize a few things. The first option is the import kind. If we leave it set to Footage and ignore everything else and just press "Okay", you can see a thumbnail preview of the artwork right here, but are brought in the file as a single PSD with no layers, so I'm going to undo that, go to File, Import, File one more time, select our artwork, and then under Import Kind, I'm going to change it from Footage, to Composition; Retain Layer Sizes. Now the retain layer sizes part is important. If we were to leave it as composition, each layer would be the size of the document and we don't want that. If we change it to retain layer sizes, each layer will be sized to the artwork that it contains. You don't have to worry about anything else in this panel, go ahead and hit "Okay", and now we have two items in our project. The first one is a composition. You can think of a composition inside of After Effects similar to a document inside of Illustrator or Photoshop. It's basically a document that contains layers and effects, and it's where we'll do all of our animating. The next is a folder. You can see that it's named Lorem Ipsum Layers. So if I expand this folder, you can see that we have all of our different layers separated out into individual files and they're named in such a way that you can see they're all referencing the same PSD file. So that's helpful with our organization, but we don't need to worry about this folder, that's just where After Effects is organizing it all. If we double-click on the composition, that opens up inside of our composition viewer. Now right away, my artwork is too big for the screen, so the first thing I want to do is zoom out. Just like in Photoshop and Illustrator, there are a handful of ways to do every single operation. If I have my mouse over the composition and scroll out with the mouse, that zooms out. Every time that I scroll, it zooms out further and further. If I scroll in, it'll zoom in. I can keep going and keep going. If you look down here in the left corner of the composition panel, this is telling you what magnification you're set to. If you were to click on this, you could select from a bunch of preset scales. So if I went to 25 percent, I can see more of my artwork. Another option is to fit the composition to the composition viewer. If I click on that, now my composition zooms to fit, so I can be sure that I'm seeing all of the composition. Another thing you'll notice are these guides. After Effects translates the guides from Photoshop, so even though they were hidden in Photoshop and I didn't even know they were there, they appear inside of After Effects. If you have guides appearing and you don't want to see them, come up to View and uncheck Show Guides. Now that we can see all of our artwork, let me explain a little bit more of what we're seeing inside of After Effects. Inside of our timeline panel, you see that we have all of our layers. If I scroll down to the bottom, everything is accounted for the same way that it was inside of Photoshop, but we have a lot more to deal within our timeline than we do inside of our layers palette in Photoshop. In some ways, it's similar. Like whatever order you have these layers in, are the order that they'll show up on top of each other, and these little eyeball icons will hide or show layers. If you are familiar with blending modes inside of Photoshop, you have access to all of the same blending modes inside of After Effects, but there are a whole bunch more buttons and parameters that we don't need to worry about right now, so what I'm going to do is come down to the very bottom left of After Effects and select this second button that says Expand or Collapse the Transfer Controls Pane, and click on it, and that will hide some of the switches that we don't need to worry about. Then if I come up to this little black divider line, you see that my mouse switches to a double arrow. If I click and drag on this, I can resize each column. That will give us some more room to work with over here on our timeline. So what is the timeline? This is a visual representation of our layers over time. If you look up here at the top of the timeline, you can see time values. So we've got 0, 30 seconds, one minute. There is 30-second increments through the duration of our composition. If I select one of these layers, you see that this entire bar highlights. That means that that layer exists for the entire composition. For now we don't need to get much deeper than that, I'll explain things as we go, but now you should have a basic understanding of what these three panels do. 5. And Cozy: Next, we need to make sure that our composition is set up inside of After Effects the way that we want it. To do that, I'll come up to "Composition", and go to "Composition Setting". This allows us to customize a lot of information about our composition. This is where we can set the width and the height, which are exactly what our PSD would've set to. There are only two other things that I'm concerned with right now. The first is frame rate. The frame rate of a composition is how many individual images you will see per second of video playback. If that's a little confusing, don't sweat it. What's important is that, working in this class, we're going to be using 30 frames per second. Click on this little drop-down, come down to 30, and then you'll be working in the correct frame rate. Then I'll come down to my duration. This is called time code. The way you can read it is hours, minutes, seconds, frames. Right now, this is telling me that my composition is set to be five minutes and 30 seconds long. That's way longer than I need it to be. I'm going to change this to be zero minutes, 10 seconds, and then press "Okay". Now, if you look at the top of the timeline, you can see that we have increments of one second, so our composition is much shorter. That's exactly what I wanted. Right now, we're looking at the composition's first frame. Our composition can change over time. The way that I know I'm on the first frame is because, down here at the top left of our timeline, we have our time code readout. It says that we're on frame zero. If I come over to this tool called the current-time Indicator, or sometimes referred to as the playhead, I will click and drag that. As I'm dragging this, you can see that the numbers are changing over here in the time code readout. If I went to rate here, we're at two seconds. Because we haven't animated anything yet, our composition looks exactly the same. All of these layers exist for the entire duration of the composition. No matter where I go inside of it, our artwork is going to look exactly the same. But let's say, if I was at two seconds, I wanted the out L layer to be turned off. Well, with that layer selected, I can come to the very end here, and you see that, again, my mouse switches to this double arrow. If I click and drag, I can cut this layer down so that it doesn't appear at the two second mark. You see now that my L is missing. If I back up, it's there. Once it gets cut off, it's no longer there. This is the foundation of how After Effects works. I'll undo that by going to "Edit", "Undo", or by pressing Apple, Z or Control, Z on a PC. It's never too early to start learning keyboard shortcuts. I use them all the time and a lot of them crossover from Photoshop or Illustrator. That's an easy one to remember, Control, Z or Command, Z to undo. The next thing I want to point out is that, as I move my mouse over this composition, you can see that a box forms over whatever layer I have highlighted. If I highlight the O, we've got these four corners showing up around O. If I click on it, we have transformed controls just like inside of Photoshop, with our anchor point in the middle and our handles on each side in all the corners. This is just a little bit of a visual feedback of what you're about to select inside of your composition. I can click and drag to reposition my layer. I can grab one of these handles to scale it and hold Shift to constrain the proportions. Because we broke all of these letters up into individual layers, it's very easy to move stuff around. Now, what I don't want to do is accidentally grabbed the background layer and throw it off center. So since I'm not going to be animating the background at all, I'm going to lock that layer by coming down to the Timeline panel, coming to this column with the Lock icon, and clicking on that switches box. Now that background layer is locked and I can't even select it. If I come up here in the composition, I can't move around it, and it will make things like selecting multiple layers at the same time much easier. Now that our document is pretty much set up, we can start animating. But before we do anything else, I just noticed I have not saved this project yet, and that's very bad. So we need to go ahead and save this. I will go to "File", "Save", and then rename this Lorem-Ipsum, and click on "Save". Now my project is saved and I don't have to worry about losing any of what I've already set up. Now, you might notice that my composition is displaying in a lower quality than what we were seeing inside of Photoshop. That's because we're looking at quarter resolution right now. What After Effects is doing is automatically down-sampling our artwork so that it displays faster based on the zoom that we have our composition set to. Because this is being displayed in parentheses, that tells me that After Effects is set to auto. So if I were to zoom in one click, you can see that now it switched to half and our artwork looks a little bit better. By zooming one more time, we're at full because we're looking at it 100 percent. But what if I wanted to look at full quality while zoomed out to 20 percent? Well, I can do that by clicking on the resolution and selecting "Full", and then my artwork looks much cleaner. But if this is slowing down your computer, absolutely feel free to change this to half or auto, whatever you'd like to do. I'm pretty sure I'll be fine working in full, so that's what I'll set mine to. Now, if you remember, in Photoshop, I made vector masks around these letters. You can see that mask shows up inside of After Effects exactly how we had it in Photoshop. If I click and drag on one of these points, I can modify that path. That's why I used vector masks inside of Photoshop. If I click on any one of these letters, you can see that the mask has appeared with it. Now, I don't want to accidentally modify one of my mask paths, so I can actually turn the visibility of them off by coming down to this little button here in the composition window and unclicking it. Now my mask paths don't show up on top of these layers. Another thing you might have noticed is that, on all of these letters, the anchor point is centered in that layer. But up here on my first word, the anchor point is not showing up inside the center of each letter. Now, the reason for that is because the layer is actually the size of the entire word, but all we're seeing is the part of the word that's being masked off. So to After Effects, the anchor point is centered on the layer. But looking at it like this, the anchor point looks completely off-center. Now, there's some big reasons why the positioning of the anchor point is very important. One reason is that scaling a layer is based off at the anchor point. So if I were to grab this transform handle and scale it down, you can see that it's scaling down towards the anchor point or scaling up away from it. But if I were to do that to one of the other letters, you can see that it scales around the center. That's because the anchor point is in the center of the layer. Same thing goes for rotation. If I were to rotate this, it's rotating around the center of that anchor point. But on the O here, it rotates around the center of the letter. Once we go to animate the scale or the rotation, the anchor point is going to play a very important role. We need to be able to modify this anchor point so that it's set to exactly where we wanted on the layer. If I want to center the anchor point on the M exactly, all I have to do is right-click on the layer, go to "Transform", and then down to "Center Anchor point in Layer Content". If I click on that, you see that my anchor point just snapped straight to the center of the M. Now, if I scale this layer, it scales from the center. If I rotate it, it rotates around the center. Now, I want to do that for all of these other layers, but I don't have to do them one at a time. I can select all of my layers by clicking and dragging a box around all of them. You can see the boxes showing up around the letters that gives us visual feedback of what we're about to select. Then I'll let go, right-click on all of them, "Transform", "Center Anchor Point in Layer Content". Now, every one of my layers has the anchor point centered on its letter, including the accent marks. That's great. Now, right now, almost all of my layers are the exact same color. It'd be pretty easy to get a little lost as to what I'm looking at inside of my timeline. So to make this a little bit easier, I'm going to change the color of each layer group. I'll start with Lorem. I'll click on the letter L, hold Shift, and then click on the accent marks so I have all the layer selected between those two. Then I'll click on the label switch, which is this little colored square. Click on it, and then change it to red. Then I'll scroll up the list, go to Ipsum, Shift, and click on the accent marks. Click on the label switch, and go to yellow. Then I'll scroll up, select the next word, choose aqua. Take the next word, pink. The last word is already a different color. Now we can very quickly see, visually, which layers belong to which words. You also notice that, as I hover my mouse over the words, the boxes around them have also changed color. That's just another great way to stay organized inside of After Effects. Now that all that organization is done and we've set up our composition, we can move on to animation. Make sure everything is organized and looking exactly how you expected it to inside of After Effects. Also, double-check to make sure that your composition settings are set up the way that you want them. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them on the Ask Me Anything thread on the Discussions page. 6. Animation Pt. 1: Now we get to have some fun and actually add motion to the hand lettering. Now, there's an unlimited number of possibilities for how you could animate your type. My goal for this set of videos is to show you a bunch of different possibilities for how you could animate your type. But I won't even be able to scratch the surface of how many possibilities there are to animate your type. If you're completely new to animation, just take this as a way to get familiar with the way that After Effects works and use it as a starting point for developing your own animation vocabulary. I'll start by animating the first word. I'll zoom in and I want to reposition the composition window so I can see all of the word. To do that, I'll hold down the spacebar and you'll see that my mouse switched to the hand tool. Now I can click and drag inside the composition to reposition my artwork. I'll just drag it down so I have my Lorem word centered in the comp to make it easier to focus on that word. Now, I want to animate this first word by having each character scale up from nothing to where it is now. If I click on the first letter and scroll down in the timeline, we see that that layer is selected and then I'll come down to this little arrow on that layer. If I click on that, it will twirl open some options for that layer. I want to go to the transform controls. I'll click on that dropdown arrow and now we have access to all the different transform properties for that layer. If I were to come over to the transform handles of the layer and grab the one in the corner and change it, you can see that down here, the scale is changing as I'm scaling this up and down. If I were to reposition it, the position values are changing while I'm doing that. I'm going to undo to get back where I was. I can also control these values by just clicking and dragging on the values themselves. If I wanted to change the scale, I could just click and drag or the position, and it's doing the same thing as just clicking and dragging the layer. But this way, I could be a little bit more precise and even type in a number if I click once on the value and then type in 100, then it's back to 100 percent. Again, I'll undo to get back to the original position, and the property I'm going to be animating on all of these letters is the scale. To create animation and After Effects, we need to use what are called keyframes and that's what these little stopwatches are for. To set a keyframe, you click on the stopwatch that belongs to the property that you're trying to set a value for. If I were to click on this stopwatch, we see this little diamond icon shows up wherever the playhead was. That's a keyframe. What that's doing is telling After Effects that at frame zero, our scale is set to 100 percent. If I were to click and drag on this keyframe, I could move it to say one second, and now After Effects is keeping a record that at one second, this letter should be at 100 percent scale. If I go back to zero and then change the scale from 100 to zero, a second keyframe is added, and our layer has been scaled down to zero, so we don't see it anymore. Now, we're telling After Effects at frame zero have the scale of this layer be set to zero. At one second, have the scale be set to 100. Now, you can see that at one second, our layer is back. But what's really cool about After Effects is that if I click and drag on my play head between these two keyframes, you can see up here in the composition viewer that the layer is being scaled from zero to 100 between those two keyframes. After Effects is generating that animation based on two values that we have set. If I were to click and drag on this keyframe to bring it backwards in time, now there's less time between the two key frames and the scaling happens much quicker. Let's say I wanted the scale to be at a 100 percent at frame 10, so there's 10 frames between scale zero and scale 100. Now, if I step through this animation one frame at a time by pressing the page down key, you can see that my scale changes by 10 percent every frame. That's because there are 10 frames between zero and 100. The scale is going to increase incrementally by 10 percent every frame. By default, that's how After Effects interpolates to keyframes. It evenly spaces the value change in-between the two keyframes over time. This is how keyframing for every property inside of After Effects behaves. Let's say I wanted these two keyframes to be applied to all of the letters in this word. Now, if I click and drag inside my timeline, I can draw a box around these two keyframes to select both of them. Then I can go to edit, copy, then scroll up to my second letter. Make sure that I go back to frame zero and go to edit, paste. Now, if I open up the transform controls for that layer, you can see that those keyframes have been applied to that second layer as well. If I scrub through with my play head, you see that both layers are now scaling from zero to 100 percent over 10 frames. Now, since both of those keyframes are already copied, I can actually select all the other layers in that word. Go back to frame zero, go to edit, paste. Now, all my letters are scaling at the same time. Now, to preview what our animation is going to look like once we export it, we need to do what's called a RAM preview. All that means is that After Effects will process the frames that you've animated so that it can play it back in real time. By default, After Effects will RAM preview whatever you have your work area set to. Now, your work area is whatever these two handles are set to inside your timeline. Right now it's the entire composition. But if I were to click and drag on this handle, I could bring it in to about one second and let go. Now, when we RAM preview, it'll only preview between these two handles. To tell After Effects to RAM preview, we're going to come up to our preview palette and click on this last button here. You can see that that says RAM preview. If I click on that, After Effects will take a second to process, and then it starts playing back our animation in a loop. You can already see we're getting some motion on our text and that's great. But we can do some things to make it look a little bit better and a little bit more interesting. I'm actually going to give myself a little bit more room in the timeline by moving my mouse to right here on this dark line until my mouse changes to this double arrow. Then I'll click and drag upwards to expand the timeline palette so that I can see more layers at a time. Now, I want you to remember another very helpful keyboard shortcut and it's super easy to remember. With any layer selected, if you press U on the keyboard, it brings up all the keyframes you've set for that layer. That way we can focus on just the scale property of each layer, which is the only property we're animating. Then I'll scroll down and click on the O layer and press U on that one, so it just shows me the keyframes and the same thing for the L. Now, what I want to do is draw a box around the second keyframe for each layer. Now, you can actually select keyframes across multiple layers at the same time. Again, I'm going to click and drag in my timeline to draw a box around just the second key frame of each layer. Then I'll let go and now we're going to apply what's called an Easy Ease. I'm going to right click on the Keyframe, come down to Keyframe Assistant and go to Easy Ease. Click on that. The shape of our keyframe changes to let us know this is an eased keyframe. I'm going to ram preview to give you an idea of what this is doing. An eased keyframe basically just smooths out the animation of your motion. It works on any property. If you remember before, when we had regular keyframes, every frame increased the scale by 10 percent. Now, if I click through this animation by pressing the page down key, you see the first frame isn't 10 percent anymore, it's 10.9, and then it's 22.9, 35.1, 47. So it's not evenly interpolated values anymore between this keyframe and that keyframe. What that translates to in animation is having a smoother or eased animation for the second keyframe. Play that back again, it just eases into that motion of the second keyframe. Now, let's say I wanted to take the ease off and I'll do it on just the L, so we can compare it to the rest of the word. With that layer selected, I will click on this keyframe, hold down command or control on a PC and click once on it, and that takes us back to our regular keyframe. Now, if I RAM preview, you can see that the L takes longer to scale up to a 100 percent than the rest of the letters. If I do this to a couple more of the letters, we might see the difference a little more clearly. Now, the L, O, and R are not eased and the E, M, and accents are. You can see that the L, O, and R take longer to get to that final value, than the E and the M do. So we'll set these back to Easy Ease, and that's just a really quick and easy way to smooth out the motion of your animation inside of After Effects. Now, you can do so much more with easing inside of After Effects, but I'm not going to go any further down that road in this course. If you're interested in learning how to take control of your motion even further, go check out some of my other classes, specifically, the animating with ease course. But for now, Easy Ease will do just fine for what we're trying to accomplish. 7. Animation Pt. 2: All right. So this animation is great, but we can make it a little bit more interesting. I'm going to select all of my layers and then press U again. You see that collapses all of the properties that had keyframes. So you can press U once to open all the keyframes and U again to close them all. So right now, all of our layers are scaling up at the exact same time. But what would happen if we offset each letter by a frame? Well, let's try it. I'll select all of my layers except the L, then I'll zoom in on my timeline by pressing the plus button on the keyboard. I'll scroll over by grabbing this scroll bar, so I can see the start of my animation. Then I'll click and drag until that group of layers jumps one frame forward. Then I'll hold down command or control on a PC and click on the outer layer. Then I'll grab the group of layers again, move it forward one frame, and then I'll continue doing this until every layer is offset one frame. Now, if we ran preview, our animation has a little bit more flow to it. It's now scaling offset one frame at a time from left to right, so that's a little bit more interesting. If we wanted, we could offset this by another frame, run preview. Now, it just takes a little bit more time. I like it having a two frame gap, that's what I'm going to leave it as. Now, we can take this even a little bit further. If you remember the anchor point of the layer dictates a lot about how the layer animates. Right now, all the anchor points are centered on the layer, so the scaling is happening from the center, but let's say I move the anchor point from the center to the bottom left. If I open up the transform properties, you can see that we have an anchor point value. But if I click and drag this, it doesn't do what you would expect it to. The anchor point is staying in the same spot of the composition while the layer is moving around it and that's not what I want, because if I got it to the point that I wanted it on the layer, I would then have to reposition it. But I have no guarantee that that's exactly where it was before, so I'm going to undo to get back to where I was. There's, actually, a simpler way. If we come up to this tool right here, it's called the pen behind or anchor point tool, I click on it then I can click and drag this anchor point to wherever I want. As I do this, you see the position and anchor point values are changing, but the layer isn't moving, so this makes it a lot easier to reposition the anchor point. Let's say I wanted it in the bottom-left corner. Now, if I ran preview, you can see that the scale is happening from that bottom left corner and it's scaling up in a diagonal motion towards the rest of the layers, if I were to move that anchor point to the top, run preview. Now, it's scaling downwards. So you can see that the anchor point really plays an important role in how your animation plays out. I'm going to do the same thing for the rest of these letters, just move the anchor point to the bottom left of each layer. It doesn't have to be exact. Just reposition it to where you'd like it and we'll see how it plays out. Now, for the accent marks, I don't want it to scale from the bottom left I, actually, wanted it to scale from the word itself. So now if I preview this, all of the letters are scaling up and to the right in a diagonal motion that kind of parallels the letters themselves and the accent marks pop up off of the words at the end there. Now, we have a much more fluid, nicer looking animation just by animating the scale of each letter, I'm pretty happy with the way that looks. So let's move on to the next word. I'll click on this layer and press U twice to collapse it and in the timeline panel, if you hold down the spacebar, it also switches to the hand tool and you can click and drag to pen around the timeline in the same way that you would in the composition. So I'll hold down the spacebar and scroll up. Then I want to select my next block of letters and I'm going to move them forward in time after the first animation has already happened. For this group of layers, I want to animate the position as well as the opacity of each layer. I'm, actually, going to do all of them at the same time. So I'll select the first layer, hold shift and select the last layer, then I'll open up the transform controls and you see that all of the layers expand at the same time and then I'll set a keyframe for the position and for the opacity. If I scroll down and move the play head out of the way, even though these aren't expanded all the way, you can see these little dots that represent keyframes are set for those layers. Now, with all of them selected, if I press the U key, all of those keyframes appear. I'm going to give myself a little bit more room again, just so I can see the word and so I can see all the layers at the same time in my timeline. Now, these are the keyframe values I want for the end of the animation. So with all of them selected, I want to move them forward ten frames. Right now they're at frame 20, so if I press page down ten times, I'll move forward ten frames, one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10. Now, you'll notice something about our time code. Instead of saying it's on frame 30, it's now at one second. If you remember, we had set our composition settings to be 30 frames per second, once you get to 30 frames in your timeline, it automatically resets the frame count to zero and adds one second. If you look directly below this time code, you'll see a frame number. So this is good reference for if you're trying to keep track of the number of frames while looking at a time code readout. Now, we're ten frames forward from where the layer started. I'll click and drag these keyframes to be at the play head. Then I'll come back to the first frame of all these layers, this time instead of typing in a value or clicking and dragging, I'm, actually, going to just move my layers inside the composition viewer. So if I click and drag on any one of these layers anchor points, I can reposition them and you can see these paths being drawn between these two points. In this point our representations of the two keyframes that we have set on the position value. The line drawn between them with all the little dots is a representation of the animation happening between the two. I want these letters to animate from left to right, similar to the way that we scaled the first word but this time on a position value. So I'm going to move them just to the left and a little bit down from where they end up. If I change the work area to preview just this part of the animation and then ran preview, you see that all of my letters are moving from left to right at the same time. Right now they're just appearing and moving. So what I want to do is, actually, animate the opacity of all these layers so that they don't just appear out of nowhere. I'll go back to the first frame of the layer, select all of them again and this time, click on any one of the layer's opacity values, type in zero and press enter. This changes the value for all the layers that you had selected and adds a keyframe for each one of them, since we already had set a keyframe at the end of the animation. Now, if we ran preview, the layers fade up and move over at the same time. Now, I want the opacity animation to happen quicker than the position animation. So I'm going to select the second keyframe of every opacity value by clicking holding Shift and then clicking on the other opacity keyframes. Then I want to move it back until it's about halfway through the animation, if I ran preview this. Now, the letters are 100 percent opacity halfway through the position animation. Next, I want to draw a box around the second keyframe of the position value for every layer. Right click, keyframe assistant, easy, ease, ran preview. Now it all comes to a stop at a much more gradual pace. Then I'll press U to collapse all those keyframes. I want to offset each layer by two frames the same way that I did with the first word. So I'll unselect the first layer by holding command or control on a PC and clicking on it. Then move this group of layers, two frames forward, de-select two frames, and do that for the entire group of layers. Now, if I make my work area a little bit bigger and ran preview. Now, we've kind of cascaded this motion, if I change my work area again and give myself a little bit more viewing space, ran preview both of these animations. Now, we have one animation followed by another. I could, actually, close the gap between these two animations a little bit. So I'll select all of my second word and bring it back until it, basically, matches up with my first layers animation, ran preview. Now, that motion flows together pretty nicely. 8. Animation Pt. 3: Now before I do the other words, I want to point out something about the anchor point. If I zoom in on the word ipsum and click on the letter I, see that our anchor point is smack dab in the center of that layer. I'm going to press U to bring up the keyframes. Since I already have position values keyframed to produce our animation, something weird is going to happen if I try to move my anchor point. If I switch to the anchor point tool and try and click and drag, you see it's moving the anchor point, but it's also setting another position keyframe. If I RAM preview this, now we're getting motion that we were not expecting in our original animation of the two keyframes isn't happening where it used to. Now unfortunately, moving the anchor point around after you already set position keyframes is always going to produce this result. That's why it's so important to know where you want the anchor point for you do your animation. On an animation like our first word, all we're changing is the scale. Changing the anchor point isn't affecting the position animation because there is none. The same thing would be true for it if we add a rotation animation. Moving the anchor point around doesn't change the rotation or scale values, so it won't mess with your animation, but it does change the position value of the layer, so it will mess with an animation that you've already set keyframes on the position value for. That's just something that you need to be aware of and plan ahead for. I'll undo so then I'm back to the animation I had. I'm pretty happy with the way that those two animations are looking, so I can move on to the next word. I'll collapse this layer by pressing U, scroll up, grab the next block of layers, drag it forward in time, and then go to the start of those layers. This time I want to animate the rotation and the layers. Again, I'll troll down the transform properties, set a keyframe on the rotation, press U to bring up just the rotation keyframes, give myself a little bit more room, and then I want to move forward 10 frames. You can see we're at 110. Then I'll drag these keyframes forward. Then I'll go back to the start of the layers and then click and drag on the rotation value until they're rotated to where I want them. If I set my work area to just this portion of the timeline and RAM preview, I can see what's happening. After effects is interpolating between these two key frames so that we have rotation animation on each one of our layers. Now, again, we're having the same issue as our last word, where the letters are just appearing and completing their animation. I don't want them to appear out of nowhere, so this time I'm actually going to animate the scale as well. So I'll collapse these layers, open them up, and then set a scale keyframe across all of my layers. Press U one more time to just focus on those. Since my scale keyframes are all selected, I'll just click and drag them to line up with the ending rotation values. Then I'll change the scale from a 100-0, RAM preview and now the letters scale and rotate. I'll select the second set of keyframes for each layer, right-click, Keyframe Assistant, Easy Ease, RAM preview and now the motion is smoothed out a little bit. Next, I want to opposite the anchor point of each one of these layers like we did with the word Lorem. I'll switch to the anchor point tool, have the first layer selected, and this time I'm going to move it to the top left corner of each letter. Do that on each one of these layers and then RAM preview. Now each letter is scaling and rotating from the top left corner. Next, I want to offset each one of these layers again by two frames. So I'll select all of them, collapse them by pressing U, and then offset by two frames. Make my work area a little bit longer in RAM preview. Now, we've got this cascading animation. I'll back this up a few frames so it lines up a little bit more with the word before it, set my work area to the beginning of the animation, give myself some more viewing space and I zoom out so I can see this as a whole. Now, we can see the first three words animating. I'm actually going to back this up just a couple more frames and bring the second word back with it a little bit. I'll RAM preview. Now the animations are just overlapping each other a little bit more. Don't be afraid to animate multiple words at the same time. Adding that little bit of overlap helps keep a flow throughout your entire animation. If I were to offset these words to be animating one at a time, it would take much longer to see your animation and there'd be much less flow. All right, let's move on to the next word. For this one, I'm going to go back to animating the position value. What I want to do with this animation is make it look like it appears out of nowhere, drops down, and then bounces back into the position that it's in now. We're going to do this using the position and scale properties. I'm going to drag this layer forward in time and then I'll go 10 frames forwards. Right now I'm at 110, so I'm going to go forward to 120, open up the transform properties, set a position value keyframe and a scale value keyframe, and then I'll go back to the beginning of the animation. I want to drag this upwards, but I don't want it to move left or right at all, just straight up. To do that, I will hold down shift while dragging and that will constrain your movement to being either up and down or left and right, but not in a diagonal motion. So I'll just move it up until it's about as high as I want, let go, and then I'll move my work area forward so we can preview this animation. Right now it's just appearing out of nowhere and dropping to its final position. But what I want to do is add a third key frame about halfway through the animation where it goes down past the final keyframe value. I'll again, click hold shift and drag down. If I zoom in a little bit, we'll be able to see clearer what I'm trying to do. Let me undo before I set that value. Right now, we have the first keyframe represented by this square right here, and the second keyframe being represented by this square. So what I want to do is that it third keyframe about halfway between these two that goes down below this keyframe value. So if I click, hold shift, and drag, I'll move it until it goes past that keyframe and then let go. Now, if I zoom out a little bit and preview this animation, now our word drops down and bounces back up a little bit. Preview that again. That's great. Now, I'm going to select all three of these keyframes, right-click Keyframe Assistant, Easy Ease. Now, let's play that back. Now, it looks just a little bit more bouncy. I really like the way that that motion looks. Now to help the animation not look like it's just appearing out of nowhere, I also want to add a little bit of scale animation so that the animation looks like it popped like a piece of popcorn instead of just appearing out of nowhere. So I'll backup to the first frame of the layer and then just click and drag on the scale value to make it come down just a little bit. I don't want to go from 0-100, I just want to knock it down to somewhere around, let's say 84. Now if I RAM preview this, you see that the scale animation is now happening in addition to the position value. But just as we set a third position keyframe that goes beyond the resting value before getting there, I want to set a third scale keyframe that goes beyond the 100 percent keyframe value before it gets to that value. Right now, if we lined this play head up with a second position keyframe, our scaled value is 92 percent. But if I were to scale this up to be something more like a 106 percent and RAM preview that, now our scale is also a little bit bouncy. I can select these three keyframes as well. Go to Keyframe Assistant, Easy Ease, RAM preview, and now everything is smooth there. Now this is great, but we can take it even one more step further. If I were to have these three scale keyframes selected and then drag them forward, say two frames, now the position animation and the scale animation are offset. Lets RAM preview to see what that does. You can see that produces a more wobbly animation. This is called overlap. As you can see it's very simple to do, but it adds a lot to your motion. I like the way that that looks, so now I can move on to the last word. I want to change it up a little bit with this last word and have it come from off-screen and end where it is. To do this, I'll select this last set of layers, drag it forward in time, and then open up the Transform controls, set a position keyframe, move it forward 10 frames, press U to bring up just those keyframes, go to the beginning of the layer, and this time instead of clicking and dragging the layers, I'll just adjust the position value right here in the timeline. These two values represent the x position and the y position of the layer. X is side-to-side and y is up and down, so we want to adjust the y position value. I'll click and drag this until it's all the way off screen. I'm going to reposition my comp to make sure that all of these layers are completely off. Now if I set my work area to this portion of the timeline in RAM preview, our layers are rising up from the bottom of the screen. That looks pretty good. I'll then ease the second set of keyframes by going to Keyframe Assistant, Easy Ease. Now if I RAM preview this, see that our entire word is rising up all at the same time and easing into that final position. So let's collapse these values by pressing U. I forgot to do that with the other layer too, so I'll just collapse that quickly. Then I will offset each one of these layers, two frames so we get a cascading animation RAM preview. I'll expand my work area a little bit so we have more time to see a resting position. I think that looks pretty good. I'll just backed these up a little bit in time so that they line up with the word before it. Then I'll set my work area to be the length of the entire animation. I'll drop this down and set this to be fit and then RAM preview the whole thing. Now, I have a complete animation of my hand lettering. Now at this point, I've finished my animation. But like I said before, this is one of an unlimited amount of ways that I could have animated it. My goal was just to show you all of the main properties that you have access to to create the animation, but it's completely up to you how you want to combine it. If you wanted to use the same type of animation for each word, you totally could. Or if you wanted to change the type of animation for every letter, you could also do that. Let's say you're happy with the way that your animation looks, but you want a part of it to be a little bit faster. So let's use this last word as an example. If I press U to bring up the position values, and let's say I wanted to come up much quicker, I'll just click and drag a box around the second set of keyframes and move it backwards in time. Now if I RAM preview, that last word jumps up much quicker. Let's say the two frame offset doesn't really work for me on this last word. Well, then I can change the offset to be one frame apart and now it happens much more quickly. You also don't have to do anything in a specific order. If I wanted to, I could completely randomize when these layers are coming on for every single one of my words, and it will produce a completely different result. Now if we RAM previewed animation, it's randomized. It looks like I forgot to do that to the first layer, so I'll just offset these quickly. Now I have a completely randomized animation. So you have complete creative freedom to do whatever you want with the animation of your hand lettering, and you get to decide how everything should look. Don't be afraid to get creative and try doing things differently than the way that I did. Now you get to be creative, try new things, and have fun animating. This is where you really get to be creative and decide exactly how you want your animation to look. If you have an idea in your head and you're having trouble figuring out how to actually do it inside of after effects, definitely post a question on the Ask Me Anything thread. I'm more than happy to work with you and try and explain how to do some more complex things. Once you're happy with the way that your animation looks, you can move on to the next lesson. 9. Exporting a GIF: At this point, you should be finished with your animation and happy with the way it looks. Now, we can export it from After Effects so that we can share it online. Now, depending on how you want to share it, there are a couple of different ways that we can export it. I'm going to start with doing a looping GIF. Now, by default, whatever you have your work area set to is what After Effects will export. If you run Preview and you like the way that this timing is working for your loop, that's exactly how your GIF is going to look when we export it. I want it to hold on the animation a little bit longer before it loops. I'm going to expand this out a little bit further, say around four seconds, and run a preview of that. That's a little bit too long. Let me zoom out on my timeline, and maybe three seconds will work a little bit better. I like that timing much better. With my work area set, I'm going to go up to Composition, Add to Render Queue, and this will open up a new panel called the Render Queue, which is how you can export things from After Effects. There are only a couple of things we needed to change. The first thing is the output module. Click on the little blue letters next to the output module, and that will open up the output module settings. We want to change the format from a QuickTime to either a JPEG sequence or a PNG sequence. If you know the difference between the two and you know when to use one over the other, go ahead and choose whichever one you would use. But for my purposes, I'm going to set it to JPEG sequence. All these settings should be just fine at their defaults, but then I want to come down here and click on the checkbox next to Resize. Because if you remember, right now, our comp is very large, it's 2,000 pixels wide, but I don't want a GIF that big. I'm going to change this value from 2,000 to 800. It automatically constraints my proportions because the aspect ratio is locked, so the resolution changes from 2,000 by 1,500 to 800 by 600. That's all I need to do in here, so I'll press "Okay". Then we need to come out to the Output To dialog. If I click on these blue letters, this lets you choose where you're going to export your image sequence. I'm going to leave mine set to the Desktop, and I'll make sure that "Save in subfolder" is checked. That way, After Effects will create a folder, wherever I have selected, to put the image sequence into. You can change the name of that folder right here. I'm going to actually change this to Lorem Ipsum GIF. Everything else is fine and I'll click "Save". Now, the only thing left to do is click on this button that says "Render". When I click on that, you'll see this progress bar go by. Our animation is being compiled up here in the composition. That chime means that our export is finished. Now, if I come to my Desktop folder, we have this new folder called Lorem Ipsum GIF, and inside that folder is a whole ton of images, one for each frame of our animation. That's all you have to do inside of After Effects to export for a GIF. Next, we need to open up Photoshop. Then we'll go to File, Open, and go to the folder where you exported your image sequence. Click on the first file in that folder, and then come down here and see this little box that says Image Sequence. If I check this box, Photoshop automatically detects that this is an image sequence based on the numbers that were generated by After Effects for each frame. If I click on "Open", Photoshop's going to ask me what's the frame rate of this image sequence? Well, we set ours to be 30, so I'm going to make sure that I change this from 24 to 30, and then press "Okay". Right now, all I'm seeing is the background, and that's because I'm just looking at the first frame of the animation. But if I open up my Timeline panel, you see that we have a timeline that's pretty similar to what we had in After Effects. If you don't have the Timeline panel open, just come up to Window and make sure that Timeline is checked. Then I can scrub through this timeline, just like I did in After Effects, to see my animation, just to make sure that everything turned out okay. Now, I'm actually working in the latest version of Photoshop and they've changed things a little bit around from the previous version. If you're working in a version before 2015, you're going to want to go to File, Save for Web. But if you're in CC 2015, they moved that from being in this panel here to Export, Save for Web, Legacy. That's still how I want to export. Make sure that you go to the Save for Web panel, whether you're in CC 2015 or a previous version. Now, we'll open up this panel, and the first thing we want to do is change the preset to be GIF 128 Dithered. That's going to have to process. Then once it's done processing, it'll give you an updated preview of your GIF. At this point, it's up to you to determine what settings you need to use for the best quality of your GIF. Right now, I'm not getting the best quality on this gradient in the background, so I'm going to change my dither from 88 to 100 percent. That cleaned up the background just a little bit. I could also increase my colors from a 128 to 256, but increasing these values is also going to increase the size of my GIF. But even with those values all the way up, my GIF is only 910 kilobytes, which is great. Anything under a megabyte is completely fine. I would recommend that you wouldn't go any larger than five megabytes. But if you keep things to this resolution or smaller, and your animation isn't too long, you should have no trouble getting your file size down. Once you've gotten all of your settings to where you want them, the last thing you need to do before hitting "Save" is makes sure that your looping options is set to Forever, otherwise, your GIF will not loop. Photoshop just seems to really like to change this value on you when you least expect it, so make sure that says "Forever" before you hit "Save". Everything's set, so I will save, and I'll name this GIF, Loremipsum. I'll press "Save". Photoshop will export that, and then if I come to my desktop and preview this, we've got a looping GIF. Now, you can upload this image into your project page or share it online. 10. Exporting a Video: If you want to upload a video clip to YouTube, or Vimeo, or another video hosting site, then you want to export your animation as a video file. But with something like this animation, if it just plays back once and then stops, that video is going to be very short, and you're going to have to click "Play" again and again if you wan to see the animation over, and over again. So what we're actually going to do is create a loop within After Effects, so that when we export it, the animation plays back five times. To do this, I'm going to come over to my project panel, click on my animations comp, and then drag down to the new composition button. Dragging my composition to the new composition button, automatically creates a new composition the same size, frame rate, and duration of the original composition, and puts the original composition inside of it. So now, we have Lorem Ipsum 2, automatically opened it and inside of it is our Lorem Ipsum composition. So I'll rename this Lorem Ipsum loop. Then I'll go to three seconds again in this timeline, and I want to trim this layered down to that value. So I'll click, drag, and hold shift on the keyboard, so that it snaps to my play head. Now, I know that my composition is exactly three seconds long. Now, I want to duplicate this layer by going up to Edit, Duplicate, and now I have two copies of the same composition. Then I will click and drag this animation, hold down shift, so that it snaps to the end of this layer, and now I have a loop between these two compositions. Then I'll do that again, go up to "Edit", "Duplicate", click and drag, hold shift, and now I have three loops. You know what, I think three these just fine, so I'm just going to leave it at that. Then I'm going to move my work area, hold down shift, so it snaps and preview the loop. Now my animation plays through once, place through a second time, and then plays through a third time before coming to the end. Now, with my work areas selected to just that duration of those three layers, I will come up to composition, add to render queue, and again, we want to come into the output module. Leave the formatted QuickTime, come down to the format options, and change the video codec from animation or whatever it's set to. Scroll down to H.264, which is just a compressed version of a QuickTime file, you can leave the quality at a 100. Check this box next to key frame everyone frames, and change it from one to 30. Then come to the bitrate settings, and check the box next to limit data rate two, and change it from 1,000 to 20,000. Then press "OK". We need to again change the size, because 2,000 pixels wide is way bigger than we need it to be, so I'll change it to 800 by 600, and then I can press "OK". You can change your output two, again, I just want to export on my desktop, then click "Render". Again, this progress bar will appear, showing you the animation preview up in the composition viewer. Once it gets through the entire animation, you'll hear that chime again, which lets you know that everything went just fine. If I go to my desktop folder, we now have a QuickTime file. If I open that up and play it back, we now have an animation that loops three times, and it's a very small, three megabyte file, at pretty good quality for that resolution. Now, you can upload this to YouTube, or Vimeo, Facebook anywhere you would like to share it. 11. Thanks!: Thanks so much for taking my class. I hope you enjoyed it. Again, if you have any questions, please ask them on the Ask Me Anything thread and I'll be happy to help you out. If you like my class, I would love it if you left me a review. You can follow me on social media @jakeinmotion. If you post any of your projects online, tag me so I can show up your art. If you want to learn even more about animating hand lettering, get ready for more, because soon I'll be posting more classes on how to animate hand lettering in more advanced ways. If you're interested in how to take the animation fundamentals I taught in this class further, check out my Animating with Ease Class. That's a great next step for anyone who's interested in improving the quality of their animation. Again, thanks so much for taking this class and I'll see you next time.