Today I would like to share with you a scrip that I created. It’s simple, but very useful, and saved for me a lot of time.
Problem and solution
Every day we use Pick Whip tool to copy a path to a certain property. I find it outdated and in many situations not comfortable at all.
- Sometimes we need to make several manipulations, drag this whip to special place and so on. For example, try to link position of the layer to a different layer from a different comp.
- It’s not universal. By using Pick Whip you are under a risk to have a client who work with non-english AE. Yes, there is ExpressionUniversalizer script, but now it’s paid, and not perfect (if you give custom name to effect before universalization).
So I created “altwhip” script, that solves those two problems.
- To copy property path you literally need just copy and paste the path where you need.
- It’s 100% universal in any case. How it works? The script checks whole hierarchy to a property, if anything could be renamed, it adds suffix “_aw” to a name. If it couldn’t rename property (like position), it use matchName.
Right now it works only on Windows, because I’m a Windows user, and I have no any Mac to check the script.
But if you are a MacOS user and would like to use this script, please send me a DM. So I could test everything on your side.
“altwhip” is actually a family of three scripts. And I use it with “ft-Toolbar”, but you can, of course, use hotkeys.
Download zip archive from here.
You will get three .jsx files
Give them prefixes “1_”,“2_”,“3_”, like shown in a picture. It’s important, if you want to use them with hotkeys.
And copy to your AE folder:
C:\Program Files\Adobe\Adobe After Effects CC 2014\Support Files\Scripts
For new AE version press (
Type on search “altwhip”. Select key that you want to use, and drag the script to the right-bottom panel. I use (
Alt+F5, Alt+F6, Alt+F7). But you can use anything else.
For old AE versions follow the guide from here.
Open Preferences and make sure that “Allow Scripts to Write Files… bla-bla” is turned ON.
How it works?
Now If you select any property and press (in my case)
…you will copy the path to your clipboard.
comp("Comp 1").layer("my_layer")("ADBE Effect Parade")("Fractal Noise_aw")("ADBE Fractal Noise-0023")
It’s a global path (“altwhip_global.jsx” copy global paths), so you can put this to any property outside the original comp. Just press
Alt+F6) - copy paths relatively to the original comp.
thisComp.layer("my_layer")("ADBE Effect Parade")("Fractal Noise_aw")("ADBE Fractal Noise-0023")
And “altwhip_thisLayer.jsx” (
Alt+F7) - copy path that is local for the original layer.
thisLayer("ADBE Effect Parade")("Fractal Noise_aw")("ADBE Fractal Noise-0023")
I find it very easy to use.
- Select property
- Press one of three hotkeys (depends where you want to put the path)
- Find the property where you want to paste it.
- Alt+click on “watch”
- Paste the path
Five simple steps, works in any situation, absolutely universal.
Hope you find this script useful and it will save time for you. I tried to explain everything on this post, but if you have questions, feel free to ask them.
Thanks for attention!