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Snapshots

As you work, you'll often need to closely compare different frames. In After Effects, you can take a snapshot of a frame to store for later viewing. Then, with the click of a button, you can temporarily replace the current image in a Footage, Composition, or Layer panel with the snapshot image. The snapshot doesn't really replace anything; it's just used for quick reference—like holding a shirt up to yourself in a mirror to compare it with the one you're wearing. Toggling between the current frame and the snapshot makes it easier to see the differences.

You can take and view as many as four separate snapshots.

To take a snapshot:

  1. If necessary, cue the footage to the frame you want to use as a reference snapshot.
  2. Click the Snapshot button vwr_snapshot.jpg ( Figure 3.73 ), or press Shift-F5.
    03_73_snapshot.jpg

    Figure 3.73 Click the Snapshot button to store the current image as a snapshot.

    The current frame becomes the snapshot, and the Show Last Snapshot button becomes available vwr_snapshot_show.jpg ( Figure 3.74 ).
    03_74_lastsnapshot.jpg

    Figure 3.74 The current frame becomes the snapshot, and the Show Last Snapshot button becomes available.

To view the most recent snapshot:

  1. If necessary, cue the footage to the frame you want to compare to the snapshot ( Figure 3.75 ).
    03_75_cuesnapoff.jpg

    Figure 3.75 Cue to a new frame…

  2. Click and hold the Show Last Snapshot button vwr_snapshot_show.jpg , or press F5. As long as you hold down the mouse, the window displays the snapshot ( Figure 3.76 ); when you release the mouse, the window displays the current frame.
    03_76_showlastsnap.jpg

    Figure 3.76 …and then press and hold the Show Last Snapshot button to replace the current image temporarily with the snapshot. Release the Show Last Snapshot button to see the current frame again.

To take and view multiple snapshots:

  1. In a Footage, Layer, or Composition panel, cue the footage to the frame you want to use as a reference snapshot.
  2. To store as many as four separate snapshots, press Shift-F5, Shift-F6, Shift-F7, or Shift-F8—each of which stores a single snapshot. The frame is stored as a snapshot.
  3. To view a stored snapshot, press F5, F6, F7, or F8. The snapshot stored using the corresponding function key is displayed in the window.

To purge a snapshot:

  • Press Command-Shift (Mac) or Ctrl-Shift (Windows), and press the function key that corresponds to the snapshot you want to erase (F5, F6, F7, or F8).

    The snapshot is purged from memory.

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