key step I am missing

JenJen Website User Posts: 11
I hate to start the topic with the standard "I am new here"; but I am new here  :blush: 
I am having trouble exporting a file with transparency.  I have watched the recommended videos for beginners, read over all the awesome forums to include but still i can't seem to export my file to maintain transparency.  I know that in all my looking I have somehow overlooked or missed a key step and once i know it I'll "get it"  my steps are: 

items imported are .PNG items on transparency layers 
creating my layers and effects in Composite layer
completed my work in the composite layer
drag my composite layer into the editor  (the background appears black in this function rather than white in the composite shot function)
export from the editor layer using 32 bit RGBA (.avi)
I have tried adding a plane layer and then removing the color via a keying function without success (I know sounds stupid, but I was feeling pretty frustrated so I wanted to try everything) 
I even tried to create my layer in the editor function but as you know many of the effects can not be used in that function. 
the layers i am using are created in photoshop and are pretty basic text layers (I haven't gotten my head around all the text functions in hitfim yet so it is quicker for me to build it as i want in PS and then move the .png over) and a simple logo file. 
Anyone with an idea of what I am missing will receive high praise and great appreciation from me! 


  • rgbiirgbii Website User Posts: 965 Just Starting Out
    Nothing wrong with being new, everyone's been new at some point :)
    I can't say for sure why it's not working, but here's a few things to keep in mind (some may seem obvious)
    Black is not the same as transparent (try bringing into into another composite and put a colored plane behind it to verify).
    My preferred method of exporting is a PNG image sequence, making sure 32 bit RGBA is set. (I haven't tried using an .avi, so I'm not sure how well it supports an alpha channel).
    Be sure the program you plan to use it in knows it has an alpha channel. For example, vegas has an option in the media's properties to tell it an apha channel exist and how to deal with it.
    If none of the above helps, do you have a small example project to upload?
  • JenJen Website User Posts: 11
    ohhh good point on the viewer.  I had been using windows media player which would crash with every viewing of the .AVI, i will have to look into whether that can "see" the transparency layer... 
    I am currently exporting rendered stills to see about animating that. 
    your words of encouragement are appreciated!!  
  • rgbiirgbii Website User Posts: 965 Just Starting Out
    I'm pretty sure windows media player will not handle the alpha channel/transparency, in fact, most players won't.  (I think a few that work with browsers might, but not regular players). You'll probably need to bring it into an editor to work with it.  If you are trying to get it to play in a browser or on your desktop with transparency, I'm not sure, but I think you need specific players that handle that.
  • JenJen Website User Posts: 11
    yeah - the player seems to be my issue.  in the interim i downloaded the image sequence as you recommended and can use it like that!  thanks a ton!  happy new year! 
Sign In or Register to comment.