I’ve worked in broadcast television graphics since the dawn of time. And I choose the word ‘dawn’ deliberately. I used to have to book overnight sessions at an Atlanta production house where I could laboriously create layered animation using video switchers, multiple rolling VTRs, a $140,000 Quantel Paintbox, and a lot of luck. I’d stagger out of the building at dawn, squinting mole-like, tapes clutched in my hand, dying for a little sleep.
When I encountered After Effects 1.1, I remember thinking “boy, this would be a great way of working—IF it could really handle full-resolution, full-frame-rate, interlaced broadcast NTSC digital video.” Turns out that with enough patience and caution on those early CPUs, it sure could.
And that led to an entirely different workflow, where I would stack up comp after comp for rendering in my home office at the end of my day, and instead of driving to a facility, I’d hit the render button and go upstairs and get six hours of sleep.
I am so grateful to the determined development team for keeping this essential tool ahead of the curve (amazing that 4K comps can render faster than early standard def ones) and I’m grateful to Adobe for giving these creative folks a home where they could craft AE into an industry standard.
Happy birthday, you all. I’m taking a nap in your honor.
My reel: http://vimeo.com/40679202