It’s still the first week of January, so not too late for a new year’s resolution. We all use automation all the time. And there are soooo many associated key commands and shortcuts; it’s impossible to remember and use them all. We all have our favorites that we fall back on, and that’s fine. That’s human nature.
My New Years Automation Resolution
My resolution is to make it a point to incorporate a new technique in my automation workflow. In a recent chat with fellow Groove3 and logic-pro-expert colleague Doug Zangar, he shone a light on some extremely useful specific marquee tool functions that, although I had technically known about, had not been using.
So here it is. Option-click with the Marquee tool on a region header to automatically create two automation control points at each end of the region boundary. It also automatically selects the inner control point at each boundary, so that you can simply drag the automation line up or down to create your automation offset. This is a fantastic technique for creating automation handles that allow for instant adjustment of the desired parameter, set to the exact region length.
Until now, I had been using the marquee and drag technique to create the four automation control points with the inner two automatically selected. Although that works well, and I will still use it, it really only works best when there is empty unused space on either side of the region. When you have regions butted up against each other, the Marquee Option-click method is bulletproof in getting the control points exactly where you need them.
So, if you have your Marquee tool assigned as your alternate tool, simply hold down the Command Key along with the Option key, and click on the region header. Then just drag the automation line up or down.
Without having to learn or remember anything new, there is a bonus to this workflow. If automation already exists within the region, Option-clicking the region header will select all automation control points within the region boundary, which is perfect for when you need to offset the automation within a region. So, here you get two tips for the price of one! Seriously though, there is only one thing to remember and integrate into your workflow, and you get two useful functions from it, dependant on whether automation already exists or not.
Option-click a region header that already contains automation control points, and they will all be selected. then you simply drag up or down to adjust/scale the entire automation curve. And all exactly within the boundaries of the region!
So, there you have it, two for the price of one. Option-click the region header with the Marquee tool and get two useful functions. That’s my new year’s resolution: to use this function.