How to Export a Movie with a Transparent Background in After Effects

June 25, 2015

In this quick tutorial I’ll show you how to export a Quicktime movie with a transparent background in After Effects.

You’ll learn what your composition should look like and how to check your transparent background before you render. I’ll also walk you through the exact render settings for exporting a transparent background.

Bonus at the end
At the end of the video I’ll walk you through the easy peasy steps to saving the render settings so the next time you need to export a movie with a transparent background so you don’t have to push all these buttons in the future.

Let’s get started!

1. Check Transparency

toggle transparency button in after effects
Click on the ‘toggle transparency’ grid button to view the transparent areas (shown as a gray and white checkerboard grid) and your visible layers.

If everything you want to be transparent (in this case the background behind the text) turns into a checkerboard grid then congratulations you’re ready!

Hold on, what if you click the toggle transparency button and you don’t see a checkerboard background?

Take a look in your timeline and look for any solids or layers that are covering up the background. Turn these layers off then re-check transparency.

2. Render Settings

Add the comp to the Render Queue. Go to the Composition Menu and select Add to Render Queue.
add to render queue in adobe after effects

In the Render Queue tab click on “Lossless”
render queue lossless

In the Output Module Settings window select Quicktime as your format and “Animation” in the Format Options area. Go to the Channels menu and select ‘RGB + Alpha’.

render settings for alpha channel in after effects

Click OK and Render away!

Too much button clicking? Let’s create an Output Module Setting template for next time.

In the Edit menu, select Templates, then Output Module…
output module template

In the pop up menu click on ‘New’:
output-module-after-effects

Select same settings from Step 2 above:
render settings for alpha channel in after effects
Click OK

Re-name the setting to “Render with Alpha”
new-settings-name
Click OK

Add a comp to the Render Queue (Edit/Add to Render Queue). Select your new setting from the Lossless menu:
output-module-template

All done!

Hang on- did you download the Free Lower Thirds pack yet?

You did? Great!

Now that you’ve got some sweet animated lower thirds for your video project watch this tutorial to see how they can be imported into your favorite video editing software.

Enjoy!

The post How to Export a Movie with a Transparent Background in After Effects appeared first on FluxVFX.






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