After Effects Tip: Edit Original

In this post, you will learn how to locate an original project file you can no longer find in After Effects with Edit Original. So let’s dive right in!

I’m sure this is probably something a lot of you can relate to. For example, you might have a video that you have exported out of After Effects, and you just can’t seem to find the original project file anywhere. Sounds familiar?

Well, I have good news! You can quickly locate the original project file in After Effects. Let me show you how to do it.

Applying Edit Original

Step 1: Double click on this project panel in After Effect.

Double click on the project panel in After Effects

Step 2: Bring your clip into the After Effects.

Bring your project file into After Effects

Step 3: Make sure your project file is selected.

Project File Selected In After Effects

Step 4: You can do one of two things:

You can either go to Edit and click on the Edit Original.Edit Original After Effects

Or you can select your project file again and apply the Edit Original keyboard shortcut do CTRL+E on a PC or CMD+E on a Mac. Next, it will ask you whether or not you want to save the current project file, which I do not want to do. So I’m going to click on don’t save.Edit Original Keyboard Shortcut in After EffectsDon't Save Project File After Effects

So after doing all that, Edit Original will open up the original project file for you, which is extremely useful! I have to say this thing has saved my life so many times!

Edit Original Adobe After Effects

There is one thing you have to do in the Output Module Settings when you are rendering out of After Effects.

Output Module Settings

Let’s send this composition into my render queue control with the keyboard shortcut CTRL+M on a PC or CMD+M on a Mac.

Render Queue Control After Effects Keyboard Shortcut

Click on the Output Module in the Render Queue, and you have to make sure the Include Project Link checkbox is checked.

Include Project Link in After Effects
The Include Project Link feature will let you trace back to your original project file. Hit OK when you are ready and when you render your project file, you will be able to quickly bring back your render into After Effect and quickly locate the original project file.  Render in After Effects
I hope you found this After Effects Tip useful. You can check out all of our Tips on our website. Also, make sure to subscribe to our email list!

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About the author:

Sergei Prokhnevskiy

Sergei Prokhnevskiy is a Charlotte, NC based motion graphics designer, an online tutor, an entrepreneur, and Adobe MAX Master Speaker. Sergei is known for his quick and practical After Effects tips and tricks on YouTube, where he generated well over 6 million views on his tutorials. He has authored an online video course on After Effects Expressions and developed scripts for After Effects. He is also a former senior motion graphics designer at Fox Sports where he worked on graphics for NFL, Super Bowl, MLB, World Series, College Football, NASCAR, Women’s World Cup, and NASCAR Race Hub. He is very passionate about learning and teaching others.


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