Unit 8.  Layers (II)

Working with Layers. Advanced Options.

Show /Hide Layers : This button allows us to show and hide all layers of the movie. It is very helpful when we have many layers and we want only to see one of them. In order to activate the view of a concrete layer (or to hide it) it is enough to click the corresponding layer in the point (or in the cross) that is under the icon "Show/Hide layers"

Block Layers : It blocks the edition of all the layers, so we'll not be able to edit them until unblocking them. In order to block or to unblock a concrete layer, we'll proceed like in the previous point, clicking on the point or icon "Lock" located in the current layer under the icon "Block Layers".

To block a layer is very useful when we have several objects together in different layers and want to make sure that we don't modify "without wanting" some of them. After blocking a layer we'll be able to work with the security of not modifying its objects, not even to select them, so we'll edit the desired object with greater easiness.

Show/Hide layers as outlines : This button show / hide the contents of all the layers as if they were composed only by borders. Facing numerous set of objects in this way, we'll be able to distinguish all of them easily and to see in what layer each of them is.

Every layer can be also activated or deactivated by using the above mentioned button in a similar manner.

Let's see how these activated and deactivated options are shown.

In the first image the current layer doesn't have any of the buttons activated, we can observe that a black point appears in the column "Show Layers”. This point means that this option isn't activated, the same happens to the button "Block layers". There are a FILLED square in the column "Show layers as outlines", which symbolizes that the objects will be completed and not only its outlines.

There appears a cross located under the column "Show Layers" in the second image, which indicates that this layer isn't visible on the stage. It appears a lock under the column "block layers", which symbolizes that the layer is blocked. And the fill does NOT appear in the column "Show layers as outlines". The layer is shown in this way and we'll not be able to see the fillings until we deactivate this option.

In addition, the color of the outlines will be different for each layer, so that we can distinguish them better. The color of the outline will coincide with the color indicated in each layer. In this example you can see the object depending on the outline option activated or not:

Reorganizing the Layers

We've dedicated a whole unit to how to place objects, we already known how to get an object over another one in a movie, how to group them and many other things. But we'll have realized that if we work with different layers, all this isn't very helpful...

As it has been already commented, the different layers have many features in common with others. The first and main feature is the Timeline, all the layers of a same scene share the same timeline and therefore, the objects of all frames from all the layers will be seen at the same time in the movie as superposed ones upon others.

But what object is over the others? The criteria is given by the Layers position in the movie. The objects that will appear ahead of all the others will be those that are on the top layer.

Pay attention to the previous example:

The goalkeeper appears in front of the goal, because the layer "Goalkeeper" is located upon the layer "Goal", so it can be seen in the image. If we want to change this distribution, it is enough to click the layer that we want to move and drag it upwards or downwards or to the desired position.

We'll see how the objects are placed ahead or behind those of the selected layer according to whether its layer is above or below this one.

In order to move an object from a layer to another one, we'll have to follow simple steps.

Learn to do it by doing the Exercise: Change Objects of Layer

In order to move a frame from a layer to another one, it is enough to select the frame to move and drag it up to the layer where we want to stick it. The frame can also be Copied and then pasted in the destiny layer.

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