Illustrator .ai import issue

Community Beginner ,
Oct 03, 2019

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Hi all -- I'm experiencing an issue when importing an .ai file I've separated from an .ai file with multiple artboards into After Effects. My goal was to separate my artboards to import into After Effects to animate one at a time. Once separated, each individual .ai file only has the correct layers for that artboard, so it looks fine. But when I am importing into After Effects -- it shows ALL the layers from the other artboards that are no longer together in one file. I don't see them on screen in the .ai file, they are only appearing when I import into After Effects. 

 

Have I done something wrong in saving to separate .ai files in Illustrator?

Or have I gone wrong in the import process in After Effects?

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Import and export

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Explorer ,
Oct 03, 2019

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If I'm understanding this correctly, your single .ai file has multiple layers in it, and this file used to be an artboard in a larger file?

 

Are you making sure to delete the layers in the Layers panel, not just the artwork? After Effects will still import empty layers, same as layers that contain artwork that's outside the artboard.

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 03, 2019

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I had a single .ai file with four artboards, each with a typographic/kinetic type design. I used the Illustrator option "Save each artboard to a separate file" to save each artboard out to its own .ai file and deleted the master. Each new .ai file only has its respective layers, not all like the master with all four artboards. When I import the first new .ai file into AE, it has ALL the layers like the master, even though I'm not seeing them when I open the ai file in Illustrator. 

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Explorer ,
Oct 03, 2019

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Okay, now that I test this out for myself, I see that it is retaining those layers in AE even though they are not present in Illustrator. Weird! I was able to work around it though, by opening the new standalone artboard .ai file in Illustrator, then just resaving it (You may have to make some sort of change to the file first, like hiding/showing a layer or moving something). I was even able to do this after importing to AE, then it marked those defunct layers as offline.

 

As an unreliable computer science amateur, I'm guessing that when Illustrator saves the artboard, the layer data is still in there for AE to read, but when Illustrator opens it again, that data is corrected.

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 04, 2019

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Okay, I'm glad I'm not alone then. I looked at every export setting in Illustrator, and then every import scenario in AE. I then though it was because it was type-based, and AE often struggles importing/retaining text from Illustrator. But alas, its consistently weird and bringing in all the old layers every single time. Thanks so much for helping and trying it out on your end!

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New Here ,
Sep 29, 2020

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THANK. YOU. BEEN. LOOKING. FOREVER.

 

computer science amateur -> computer science pro

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 03, 2019

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After effects will only import one artboard and it will not import any portion of any object that falls outside of the artboard. 

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 04, 2019

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Yeah that part is totally good, it's just bringing in layers that were on another artboard that I separated from a master file -- almost like they live as ghosts in the file.

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