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Chapter 15. Complex Projects > Using the Expression Language Menu

Using the Expression Language Menu

When you start writing your own expressions, you'll discover that the language's “vocabulary” is quite extensive. Fortunately, you can plug in most of the terms you'll need automatically, by selecting them from a categorized list contained in a convenient pull-down menu.

To use the Expression pull-down menu:

1.
Expand the layer outline to reveal the property you want to adjust with an expression.

2.
With the property selected, do either of the following:

  • Choose Animation > Add Expression.

  • Press Shift-Option-Equal sign (Mac) or Shift-Alt-Equal sign (Windows).

An Equal Sign icon appears next to the property, and a default expression appears under the time ruler. The default expression won't modify the property values. The property also expands to reveal buttons in the Switches panel of the timeline.

3.
In the Switches panel of the timeline, press the Expressions pull-down menu.

A categorized menu of expression-language terms appears (Figure 15.77).

Figure 15.77. In the Switches panel of the timeline, press the Expressions pull-down menu to make a categorized menu of expression-language terms appear.


4.
In the pull-down menu, select the term you need.

In the time ruler area of the timeline, the term appears in the expression text. A cursor appears at the end of the text, indicating the insertion point for additional expression terms (Figure 15.78).

Figure 15.78. The term appears in the expression text. A cursor appears at the end of the text, indicating the insertion point for additional expression terms.


5.
If necessary, enter expression language manually (Figure 15.79).

Figure 15.79. If necessary, enter expression language manually.


6.
Repeat Steps 3 and 4, as needed.

7.
Click anywhere outside the expression text field to get out of edit mode.


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