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DISCLAIMER: I'm not adept with programs like these and I have a very VERY basic understanding (if at all) of what I'm doing, so I apologize if my choice of words is poor or incorrect; bear with me, please.

I'm making a puppet in AI CS5 to be used for an animation in AE CS5. Because it is hand-drawn, I've used the pen tool to fill shapes. I have each leg in its own respective layer and I've created a "pelvis" layer for the legs to be attached. I'd like the character to look as though he wearing pants, so I don't want the top of the leg shape to be seen and I've moved the legs behind the pelvis.

This leaves me with the outline of the pelvis showing over the leg as marked here: enter image description here

I made another "fill" with the pen tool and put that over the thigh area to cover the pelvis outline wherever the leg moves: enter image description here

If I parent the "thigh fill" to the leg while in AE, it does the trick. It stays with the leg and that's great, but that means anytime I have an overlap that needs to be corrected, I have to make a new layer. So my question is if this is a bad way to do this or is there a better, cleaner way to cover areas such as these and keep them covered as parts of the character move around?

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I can't address how to make sure this works well in AE animations, but I can tell you how to attach the leg to the body so they are 1 shape:

Place leg and pelvis on the same layer.

Select both with black arrow, open pathfinder and click Unite.

If you need them to be separate objects on different layers for your animation then you can just continue to make white fills to cover the join or "break" the path of the pelvis where it meets the leg so the stroke is not visible there. You can do this with the eraser or knife tools.

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