Use an AE Plug-In

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I am embarrassed to admit how long it took me to figure out that you could use After Effects plug-ins on Photoshop files. How, you ask? It just involves a slight "road trip. " You may know that importing a layered Photoshop file into After Effects is easy. You might not have realized that you can make changes and save them back out. I've included a simple, two-layer file called Ch05_For AE.psd in the chapter folder. We're going to take it into After Effects to use a third-party effect created by Trapcode called Shine. If you don't have Shine loaded, you can load a demo from the book's DVD-ROM.

Step 1. Launch After Effects.

Step 2. Import the file Ch05_For AE.psd as a composition.

Step 3. To avoid cutting of the edges of our effect, we must precom-

pose the logo layer. Highlight RP and choose Layer>Pre-Compose and leave all attributes.

Step 5.

Step 4. Click the Collapse Transformations switch for the precomposed layer. Highlight layer 1, the precomp, and duplicate it by pressing ^^+©

Step 6. Select layer 2 and apply the desired AE Effect, in this case Effect>

Trapcode>Shine. You may want to turn off layer 1 so it is easier to see your work.

Step 7. Play with the different options. I added a three-color gradient based on the alpha channel for the layer.

Step 8. This step is critical. Make sure all layers have their quality switches set to Final quality (/). Then ensure that your Comp Window is set to Full Quality and 100% viewing.

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Step 9. Save the file out to the PSD format by choosing Composition>Save Frame As>Photoshop Layers. If you receive a warning about unsupported blending modes you can ignore it.

Step 10. When you open up the file into Photoshop, the new effect is visible. All opacity changes, blending modes, or additional layers are accessible.

This is an excellent way to harness powerful After Effects plug-ins that have no Photoshop equivalent.

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