Better Hierarchy Management Coming to After Effects

Mike Overbeck’s Squirrel Brings a C4D-Like Object Browser & Hierarchy Management After Effects

Better layer and hierarchy management are headed for After Effects, thanks to third-party developer Mike Overbeck. Actually, “better” implies that After Effects has some semblance of tools to manage parent-child relationships — It doesn’t. Overbeck’s Squirrel is a layer tree browser that aims at dealing with complicated timelines that burden so many of us within After Effects.

If you are familiar with Cinema 4D’s object browser or Maya’s Outliner, then you may feel right at home with Squirrel. The AE extension will instantly convert your working composition into a tree-view based on your layer parenting. It’s going to be a great organizational tool for working with rigs in After Effects.

Squirrel is not yet available but will be soon, and then you will be able to:

  • Quickly parent and unparent layers with a drag-and-drop interface
  • Group layers to clean up your comp.
  • Quickly locate layers in time
  • Visually isolate your selected layers with lightTable mode
  • Search your layers
  • Manage color labeling
  • Peek into the contents of nested precomps

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