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Chapter 4. Compositions > Adding Footage to a Composition

Adding Footage to a Composition

When you add an item to a composition, you create a layer. A layer can be a footage item in the project, a solid or adjustment layer generated in After Effects, or another composition. You can add an item to a composition more than once to create multiple layers, or you can duplicate existing layers (using Copy, Paste, and Duplicate commands). In this section, you learn to create layers in a composition. Later chapters are devoted to the ways you can rearrange and modify layers.

To add footage to a composition by dragging:

1.
Set the current time of the composition, using one of the methods described earlier in this chapter.

2.
Drag one or more items from the Project window to any of the following (Figure 4.41):

Figure 4.41. You can drag one or more items from the Project window to a composition in the Project window (1), its Composition window (2), or the Time Layout window (3).


Composition window

Time Layout window

Name or icon of a composition in the Project window

Items become layers in the composition, beginning at the current time (Figure 4.42). Layers created from still image footage use the default duration for stills (see Chapter 2).

Figure 4.42. A new layer begins at the current time of the composition.


Tip

Dragging footage to the Composition window allows you to freely position an image as a layer in the composition. Dragging footage to the Layer window, or to a composition icon in the Project window centers the footage in the composition.


Tip

Another quick way to add footage to the composition centered is to select the footage item in the Project window and press Command-/ (Mac) or Ctrl-/ (Windows).


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