Post Production

After Effects Classic Course: Set Matte versus Track Matte

There’s more than one way to create transparency in After Effects…

One of the most useful compositing features in After Effects is the ability to use the properties of one layer to create transparency (an alpha channel) for a second layer. To do this, many use the Track Matte feature that’s available in the Timeline. However, there is also an effect plug-in – Set Matte – which can also do the same thing. In this movie, we compare the pros and cons of each approach.

(If you are not already familiar with Compound Effects – which Set Matte is – see this post for more background.)

This movie previously appeared in our Insight Into Effects course on Lynda.com/LinkedIn Learning. They’ve retired that course from their library, so we’re making the movies from it available publicly for free. You can either scan our page on ProVideo Coalition to see the other free movies, or click here for the playlist of previous movies we’ve made available.


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Chris & Trish Meyer founded Crish Design (formerly known as CyberMotion) in the very earliest days of the desktop motion graphics industry. Their design and animation work has appeared on shows and promos for CBS,…

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