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Animating the Clock

The animation now looks very much like a time-lapse photo—except that the clock isn't working yet! The hands of the clock should be spinning quickly to show the progress of time. You'll add animation that was created specifically for this scene. The animation was created in After Effects as a set of 3D layers that are lit, textured, and masked to blend into the scene.

  1. Bring the Project panel forward. Close the Sunrise Layers folder, and then double-click an empty area in the panel to open the Import File dialog box.
  2. In the AECS3_CIB/Lessons/Lesson06/Assets folder, select the file and click Open.

    The QuickTime movie appears at the top of the Project panel (see Figure 33).

  3. Click in the Sunrise Timeline panel to make it active and then press the Home key to go to the beginning of the time ruler. Then drag the Clock footage item from the Project panel to the top of the layer stack in the Timeline panel (see Figure 34).
  4. Preview the animation by pressing the spacebar. Press the spacebar to stop playback when you're done.
  5. Choose File > Save to save the project.

Rendering the Animation

To prepare for the next task, retiming the composition, you need to render the Sunrise composition.

  1. Select the Sunrise composition in the Project panel and then choose Composition > Add to Render Queue.

    The Render Queue panel opens.

  2. Choose Maximize Frame from the Render Queue panel menu to make the panel larger.
  3. Accept the default Render Settings in the Render Queue panel, and then click the blue, underlined words Not Yet Specified next to the Output To pop-up menu.
  4. Navigate to the AECS3_CIB/Lessons/Lesson06/Assets folder for your destination and name the file Lesson06_retime.avi (Mac OS: Then click Save.
  5. Expand the Output Module group, and then choose Import from the Post-Render Action menu (see Figure 35). This setting will import the rendered file when it's done.
  6. Hide the Output Module section.
  7. Click the Render button in the Render Queue panel (see Figure 36).

    After Effects displays a progress bar as it renders the composition, and plays an audio alert when it's finished. It also imports the rendered composition into the project.

  8. When After Effects finishes rendering the composition, choose Restore Frame Size from the Render Queue panel menu, and then close the Render Queue panel.
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