Recommendations before starting your project
You will be creating a dynamic video using the Storyteq Extension. The extension should be compatible with a wide variety of After Effects workflows, but to make your work easier when finalizing your project with our extension, it is recommended to try to build your project with the following points in mind:
- Build your project in scenes - where each scene is a separate stand-alone composition. Having standalone compositions is eventually a requirement of the extension, and keeping that in mind while building your project can save you a lot of hassle at the end. This is especially important if you will be using modular scenes, or swappable scenes, in your project. We will swap modules/scenes on a composition level, so having stand-alone compositions for each scene will help you a lot for that purpose.
- Work towards having one final AE file. Some people may prefer having separate AE files for different languages or aspect ratios, but eventually, our system will need one complete and final AE file. It may be wise to work towards that goal from the start.
- Clearly mark/build dynamic elements. You will have to tell the extension which layers will be dynamic and having these layers built in a clear manner or marked will help you do this quickly and efficiently.
- Keep your project and its layers organized. Keeping an organized structure in your project will help you a lot in the end, be it in keeping files/comps in bins, or having a clear structure to your layers within comps with proper in/out points set will eventually help you.
- Minimize the use of plugins/complex expressions. Our render farm does not support plugins, so applying plugin functionality to dynamic elements is off the table. You can still use plugins for other parts of the video, or use plugins that can operate without having the plugin installed, but note that some plugins create very complex expressions for simple things - like animating the movement of an asset which can be done by some simple keyframes can become a giant block of expression code when using certain plugins. This will slow down your eventual render and the setup process, so only use those plugins when absolutely necessary.
- Keep your compositions in the same frame rate and size as much as possible.
- Try to keep your sizes within reason. We advise using composition sizes around the 1080p mark. Make sure all comps are that same size whenever possible. You can still use 4k/6k/8k source footage - but try to keep the actual compositions in AE at or around 1080p.
- Already thinking of what poster/thumbnail your video should get. Do you want it to be a still or gif? Do you need multiple for different aspect ratios or target groups? Does it need overlays like play buttons etc?