Project Pane

The Project pane of Motion Preferences contains settings for project and layer duration and other project options. There are two categories of controls: Default Project Settings and Still Images & Layers.

Figure. Motion Preferences window showing Project pane.

Default Project Settings

These controls in the Project pane of Motion Preferences determine default values for new projects.

Note: These settings only take effect in projects created after the preferences are set and Motion is quit and reopened. To change the settings of an open project, use the Properties Inspector instead (press Command-J, or click the Project object in the Layers list, then click Properties in the Inspector).

  • Project Duration: Sets the default duration for new projects. You can enter a number into the value field and choose Frames or Seconds from the pop-up menu.
  • Background Color: A color well that sets the color of the background for any new projects that are created. Does not change the background color of the current project.

    Note: To render a new background color into your final output, you must choose Solid from the Background Color pop-up menu in the Properties Inspector (press Command-J).

  • For New Documents: These controls determine what occurs when you create a project.
    • Show Project Browser: When this option is selected, the Project Browser appears when you want to create a project.
    • Use Project: When this option is selected, the Choose button becomes available. Click Choose to specify a specific project to be opened when a new project is created. (If the project you want does not appear in the browser, click Open Other to locate the project using the Finder.) For more information on bypassing the Project Browser, see Bypassing the Project Browser.

Still Images & Layers

These settings in the Project pane of Motion Preferences control the default duration, placement, and size of still images and imported layers, as well as layers created in Motion, such as text, shapes, and masks.

  • Default Layer Duration: You can specify the duration of still images, generators, and other layers that lack an inherent duration in one of two ways:
    • Use project duration: All layers are the same duration as the project.
    • Use custom duration: Layers are the duration defined in this value field.
  • Duration: If Default Layer Duration is set to “Use custom duration,” enter a value in this field, and use the pop-up menu to set the time to Frames or Seconds.
  • Create Layers At: When you drag media items to the Canvas, Layers list, or Timeline, they can be added to the project at the current playhead position or at the first frame. This setting also applies to layers created within Motion, such as text or shapes.
    • Current frame: Creates layers at the current playhead position.
    • Start of project: Creates layers at the first frame of the project.