Flashback 8 months ago, I was an aspiring novice video editor with limited knowledge of Adobe Premiere and little to no knowledge of After Effects. Operating with a 4-year-old laptop that would shit the bed even if my mouse came close to hovering over the After Effects desktop icon. However, against my computer’s will and to the detriment of my CPU, I decided to give it a shot. The window opened to what appeared to be a simple interface like Premiere and styled very much other Adobe software. Although I soon realized this evaluation was far from the truth as I struggled to do the simplest of tasks. Frustrated, I closed the program and went back to my safe area, aka Premiere. Sometime later my creative mind was looking to expand past the borders of Premiere. Armed with a new and very capable laptop, I gave it another shot. Six months later and continuing to learn the endless capabilities of After Effects, this is what I have learned, and these are five reasons why Adobe After Effects is an ESSENTIAL software for new editors to learn.
For many Adobe Premiere is a steppingstone into video editing. The software has a friendly user interface that with some assistance from YouTube tutorials, is very intuitive and easy to learn. With capabilities for professional-level productions, Premiere is a fantastic program to grow within as an editor. Eventually, many users reach a point within Premiere that require software with more creative capabilities. Enter Adobe After Effects. Unfortunately, unlike Premiere, After Effects’ User Interface is much more intimidating to the first-time user. Although visually similar to Premiere, After Effects is a significantly more in-depth and capable software. However, this should not scare new editors from learning the software. The endless capabilities the software represents gives editors far more creative possibilities to enhance and build content.
The biggest hump for new editors is the learning curve associated with After Effects. Luckily, it seems like anything is possible these days as there is likely a YouTube tutorial for any subject you are looking for. After Effects is no exception. I cannot stress this enough! YouTube is your friend and will make learning the software much less intimidating. I still rely heavily on YouTube tutorials to accomplish my projects as often times I’m attempting to push my capabilities with each opportunity I get.
Some YouTube Videos for you to get started:
Improving Motion Graphics
Premiere’s motion graphics limitations are just that, limitations. Motion Graphics in After Effects are very easy…. once you have learned them. (Cough cough, Youtube) However, After Effects opens many more doors for typography, visuals, and 3D animations that are leaps and bounds cooler than anything you can do in Premiere. Using After Effects for graphics alone is worth the time spent learning the software.
What is a MOGRT you ask? A MOGRT, for those who don’t know, is your best friend and Premiere’s ally. A MOGRT is a motion graphics template. Using After Affects you can customize and build intros, outros, lower thirds, and many more graphic visuals that can be exported as a customizable MOGRT for use in Premiere. This will drastically increase your workflow as the graphics formatting will be automatic and is essentially plug and play. MOGRT’s are especially useful for vlogs, podcasts, or any other repetitive projects that utilize the same graphic, but with changing source text or settings.
Adobe Dynamic Link
For me, and likely many of you, Premiere is my home base. The software comes naturally to me and I enjoy working within the UI. Although, what if you need to implement one small graphic that must be done in After Effects?! Before you go searching for the After Effects icon, right-click the clip you want the graphic on and select “Replace with After Effects Composition.” This magical button will launch After Effects, import the clip you selected, and automatically link the two projects in real-time. Simply make your graphic, pop back into Premiere, and your work is already there. (Only having to export ONCE through Premiere)
After Effects gives you the power to conjure up some amazing pieces of video content! By not learning the software you miss out on a massive advantage. The ability to bring your vision to life and to its fullest form is very satisfying. Do not short yourself on it because you did not take the time to learn it.