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Chapter 9. Mask Essentials > Viewing Masks in the Layer and Comp windows

Viewing Masks in the Layer and Comp windows

With After Effects 5, you can create and work with masks in not only the Layer window but the Composition window as well. The window you use will depend on the task at hand as well as your personal preference. A Layer window shows masks in the context of a single layer, letting you view the image outside of the masked areas (Figure 9.4). In addition, the Layer window shows you the layer before any property changes (scale, rotation, and so on) are applied. In contrast, the Composition window shows only the masked portions of a layer and places them in the context of all of the layers that are visible at the current time (Figure 9.5). By the time you're able to view a layer in the Comp window, Mask, Effect, Transform, and 3D properties have all been applied.

Figure 9.4. The Layer window shows masks in the context of the layer; it also lets you see the image outside the mask.



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