Don't require track mattes to be above the layer it modifies (and also allow re-use)
Requiring a track matte to be right above the layer it modifies seems like an archaic convention at best. Get rid of that requirement and make them like parent layers which can be anywhere and used by many layers.
Saar Oz commented
Martin Klöckener commented
Updating the Set Matte effect will not do the trick. Due to the render order, effects are rendered after the transform which will lead to issues when making a comp continuously rasterized.
Picking the alpha layer like parenting would be the better solution.
Jeremy Dance commented
Either this or update the set matte effect. This is the problem -> I have a layer with animation on it that needs to be used as a matte. So I duplicate it, go into key properties (often with parametric shape layers) and use the expression pick whip to connect them via expressions. Then I duplicate this layer a couple times for different uses in mattes and already I have project with tons of expressions. Precomp this layer you say? Yes, that would work, but only sometimes depending on the project. Just update set matte or make it so you can alpha matte with the pick whip like you can with parenting.
Michael Wilson commented
I like After Effects way of Compositing Layers. Can we Make Set Matte work more like track mattes? the Precomping, and or Transform options get a bit tiring, and makes the work flow take longer.
I hate knowing that this will never be implemented :( It's just too common sense of a feature for it to ever be included, even considered.
the dudes commented
This equals to an UPGRADE of the heavily deprecated "Set Matte" Effect. It WOULD be the solution if it was any USABLE 😡
Carlos Albarrán commented
Yes please this one would be my top priority if I had anything to do with new AE features
Prof. Seb Hirsch commented
If you select a layer, it would be nice to highlight other layers that a referenced by it. be it by this new track matte idea, that i like, or by any other filter, like displacement map or camera blur.
Joe Clay commented
Rfred, it won't solve everything, but if you're just doing simple transforms, you can apply the Transform effect and then force Set Matte—in Take Matte From Layer—to use Effects & Masks instead of Source from the second dropdown menu. That way you can alter things without needing to precomp.
I currently am duplicating the layer to be used for the track matte for each layer that needs it. added 20 layers to my current job when one would do.
Precomp will work but it removes the ability to edit and adjust layers and see the results over the background and under this track matte.
Why not have track mattes work like parenting, simply choose the layer for a track matte.
Jakob Thorhallsson commented
Make a new effect called "Track Matte" which can be applied to the layer. Or fix "Set Matte" to have that option!
Jakob List commented
The set matte effect is great yes. And may be for visual help in the timeline a lasso could be nice.
And the node based comping for ae would also be awesome in my opinion.
Or, give the "Set Matte" effect some love. Generally, some filters feel like they were completely abandoned. Example: Ramp.
Agreed. Or they could improve the functionality of the set matte, which is absolutely useless if you ever have to precomp. AE really, really should introduce some kind of node-based workflow option. AE is great (for now!) but working exclusively with layers is so old-fashioned for compositing/animation.
Antoine (Autokroma.com) commented
Agreed. AE compositions organization should get closer to nodes / graphs
Nimble Media Solutions commented
I would love this feature to work how it does in Photoshop. Can make folders (not pre-comps) - and - apply a mask(s) to that folder/group.
For now, we need to create some sort of Master Control Layer that other layers can reference. Could be done with pre-comps or Pick Whipping the properties of your Master Layer.
Steve Adam commented
i have just completed a project where it would really have helped to be able to let multiple layers refer to the same track matte. OK it's easy enough to duplicate them during the build but if you ever need to come back and re-edit something for a client, or worse still need to give that job to someone else to do, you really need total recall of what you duplicated and where/why in order to be able to do this... I'm only human!
Joshua Leckrone commented
This would be so useful!
Matt Dean commented
It would be cool to use one matte for multiple layers, I'm not fussed whether they have to stay above as I find that easy to locate them.
Siamak P commented
would be great to be able to link layers to track mattes, as they are usually the layer above, so when linked you won't move them separately by mistake and would be a lot easier to manage them.