My beginner's mistake was creating compositions from source files (PSDs) that are much larger than the video output needs to be. These compositions are maps with lots of movement over the top and all made into 3D layers. When I go to render the time it takes is torturous.
Is there any way to swap out the PSD source files to much smaller PSD source files whilst retaining all the animations/keyframes? Or any way to speed up rendering of these compositions (I am assuming the 11000 pixel size is the culprit of slow render times here)?
Probably the best way is to create a Null Object, link all the layers to that null using parenting and scale the null to the desired size. After that you can delete the null and all the animated properties will be retained but with the smaller size. Then you can change the size of your composition.
Before starting to work on these big composition it is a good idea to prepare smaller versions of your files or use proxy files. As you said, 11K compositions will be the culprit of your slow render and preview times.
That's fantastic, didn't think of that. So basically, I can swap the map source file from 11K to one that is the same but one quarter the size, for example. Then Null scale all the layers to 25% so that they work with the new quarter-sized source file? I'll give that a go!
Not at this time. If you have animated images and you replace/swap for smaller versions the final result will not be the same. What I'm trying to say is that when your are preparing the images is a good idea to create smaller version to speed up your workflow. Essentialy, prepare images before animation.
But if you have animated elements in a composition, is a good idea use the null object. You can scale the null to 25% to maintain exactly what you have but in a smaller size.
Hope you unnderstand me as my native language is not english...
What I'm saying is, I can replace the large source file with a 1/4 size smaller one. Then the layers that move on top of the large layer can be put into a composition, shrunk down to 25% scale using a Null layer, then placed over the top of the small layer, so everything in theory should be in the correct position.