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Thread: Align to selection question

  1. #1

    Default Align to selection question

    I have the align panel and everything, and I understand how all the align features work, they are just like in illustrator.

    However, in illustrator, if i click an object a second time once selected, it draws a thick stroke around the selection to notify me that i've made that selection the master, and all align commands will align relative to that object without moving it.

    I don't see how i can achieve that with after effects. Is there a way to select an object as master so that i can center relative to that object without moving it?

    Edit: In case there is another better way, I'll explain what I'm doing as well. I have text that will appear and disappear along the bottom of the video. In order to make it more easily visible, I have made a black shape layer, which i have then made semi-transparent, that goes along the bottom.

    I would like to have my separate lines of text appear centered over this translucent box i have running along the bottom.

    If i use align panel, the only way i know how, It will move the box AND the text to get them centered. I would like to just align the text to the center of the box, while the box remains stationary, in place, at the bottom of the frame.
    Last edited by YouNoob; 07-02-2013 at 10:12 PM.

  2. #2


    If anyone else wonders how to do this, I found a sort of workaround that could be useful for other things as well. But, if anyone knows of an easier way, I would be interested to learn it.

    If you open the properties of the layer you want to remain still, you can alt click the stopwatch icon, which will let you write in a script, where you could put [xxx, yyy] where x and y and your two dimensions for positioning the shape. they will be the coordinates written right next to you current position.

    This way, that layer cannot move, but you can still select it, and stuff like that. So, all you have to do at that point is select that immovable shape and whatever else, and when you hit center, the immovable shape will not move, and other layer will move to center to it.

    EDIT: I think i noticed a glitch for this method. I think the math works as though the shape had moved, so the item that moves does not center to actual shape, but to where shape aught to have been were it not stuck from you rendering it immovable.

    That's ok though, because all that means, is that you have to keep pressing center until the item stops moving, and that's the real center.

    EDIT 2: If you plan to do this with text, then change your plans, because what you really want is for the text to sit on a guide line, centering alignment is useless, which is obvious if you think about it.... yes, I'm an idiot.
    Last edited by YouNoob; 07-02-2013 at 11:38 PM.

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