After Effects Keyboard Shortcuts Every Motion Designer Should Know

Layer Properties

P – Toggle position property

A – Toggle anchor point property

T – Toggle opacity property (think “opaci-T”)

R – Toggle rotation property

S – Toggle scale property

U – Toggle open all keyframed properties on layer

U + U – Toggle open all properties on layer

+ A – Select all layers

+ ↑ or ↓ – Move up or down one layer in layer list

[ or ] – Move selected layer’s beginning or end point to current time code


Tool Shortcuts

V – Selection tool (return to pointer curser)

+ T – Text tool

H – Hand tool (drag the canvas around)

G – Pen tool (draw a shape or mask on screen)



+ + or - – Zoom in or out in the video preview window

+ or - – Zoom in or out in the timeline


Work Area / Previewing

B  or  N – Set work area Beginning or End point

+ 0 – Preview the selected work area’s video and audio (this is a zero, not an “O”)

. – Preview audio only (This is the number keypad dot. For those of you working on a laptop, I suggest reconfiguring your keyboard shortcut to make it  + .  so you can quickly audio preview in the same way as RAM video previewing)

Shift + Number Key (0-9) – Add a timeline marker (Double click the marker and change the comment to rename it from a number to a specific note)

CNTRL + 8 – Add a layer timeline marker (Double click the marker to add a note on the layer)



+ CNTRL + M – Send selection to Render Queue inside After Effects (export video)

+ ALT + M – Send selection to Media Encoder Queue (export video) – this is a better way to export unless you need to export with transparency or lossless.