Best Way to Interact with the After Effects Motion Plug-In UI Besides Found Image?

I'm specifically looking for a good way to use the popular Motion plugin in After Effects, I attached a screenshot if it's helpful. I built macros using Found Image, but of course, they are not reliable at all.

I've been using SuperKey elsewhere (similar to Wooshy) to select items by name, but there is no text to use for this. There are also no items for it in the app menu to interact that way.

I'm new to Keyboard Maestro and automation, so I wondered if there was an option I wasn't seeing? Maybe a way through scripting the specify the element with which I want to interact?

Would love any ideas or advice people have, thank you.

Hey Jesse,

This kind of thing is a pain in the neck...

Sometime you can get found-images to work very reliably, but sometimes you can't.

Download the Script Debugger demo. Don't worry – it reverts to its freeware lite version after a trial period – which is still head and shoulders above Apple's Script Editor app.

Run this script with the Motion plug-in window open:

tell application "System Events"
   tell application process "After Effects"
      return name of windows
   end tell
end tell

Post the result.

There's a good bit of information on AppleScript UI-Scripting on the forum, and you can also find knowledgable people on the Script Debugger Forum.

UI-Scripting isn't particularly fun, and Apple has made it much more difficult than necessary – but it's darn useful.


It may not work in this situation but I usually try to see if I can tab over to a specific UI element from a known location. That has been a lot more reliable than find by image. There is a system setting that makes using tab more useful. One write up I found explaining this.

Hey Chris!

Thanks a ton for the guidance. I did as you said, and I'll post the results below, but I don't know that I quite ran it right. I looked through the Script Debugger website and peeped the forum but I'm not familiar with this and wasn't able to discern much. I wanted to avoid asking you every dumb beginner question, but is this right? If not could you point me in the right direction please?

The only other thing I found poking around that seems it might be helpful was this:

I'm super excited for this, thanks for your help! I haven't scripted before, but I've heard how helpful it is since getting into Keyboard Maestro and would love to start using it. Thank you again for your help!

Hey thanks Mike! I was really excited for this idea, but it doesn't seem to be doing what I need in After Effects :confused: I'd really love if I could tab the elements... Even if the buttions had words I could make a shortcut with HyperKey, but no dice. Appreciate the thought, please let me know if you have any other ideas!