You have certainly met them on the Internet: Animated GIFs are shared and liked millions of times on social media platforms. Messenger services like WhatsApp or Snapchat use many entertaining videos and images to inform or emotional states in brief to make. In this tutorial, we will show you how you can easily make an animated GIF yourself.
1. What exactly is a GIF?
In contrast to rigid formats such as JPG or BMP, a GIF file can also display moving images.
For this purpose, several individual images are stored on top of the other, which specific applications (e.g., web browser) interpret as animation. GIF was also the first compressed format that was supported by all browsers.
In the original form, images were displayed in GIFs with a maximum color depth of 256 (8 bits per pixel). In the meantime, more complex color representations have established themselves, but only its animation ability keeps the GIF alive today.
A significant advantage of GIF files is their size: With a maximum of 65,535 x 65,535 pixels, they can be compressed without loss and thus also save a lot of storage space.
2. Make GIF files yourself – this is how it works!
Making your GIF yourself is not that difficult. Here we show you the three most common variants with which you can bring movement into your pictures.
2.1. For hobbyists: Assemble animated GIFs with an image editing program
To create an animated GIF on your computer, you need an image editing program that has the necessary functions. This includes
- the regulation of frame rate, the file size as small as possible.
- a loop mode with which you can specify the number of image repetitions
- a slow motion, with which movements take place in slow motion, the ability to fade in text
But it doesn’t always have to be Photoshop: You can find a lot of free software for Windows on the Internet that you can use to animate GIFs.
- Start the application and create a new picture via File -> New.
- Set the size. This largely depends on the purpose of the GIF.
- Open the layer tool via Window -> Dockable Dialogs -> Layers or the shortcut Ctrl + L. Each layer you create will later correspond to a frame in your GIF file.
- Please assign a name of your choice and put the display time behind it in brackets.
Create content and export it as a GIF
- Now add the desired content to your layers.
- Go to “File” in the menu and select the “Export” sub-item. Enter a name for your picture and change the file extension to * .gif.
- Select a destination folder and then click on “Export.”
3. The quick way: create GIF files online
There are numerous providers on the Internet where you can assemble funny animations directly online :
Make GIF yourself with Giphy
Giphy is currently the provider with the largest GIF archive, which also provides a free image editing program with which you can create, edit and preview your memes. You can choose from three options:
- a clip from one of your videos
- a slideshow of several individual images
- a clip from videos from YouTube, Vimeo, or the Giphy archive
Create personalized GIFs with ImgFlip
With ImgFlip, you can also choose from numerous videos and photos and use them to create your animated GIF files. With just a few clicks of the mouse, you can easily create GIFs as photo sequences or short clips.
In the Pro version, you not only have more functions and storage space available, but you are also rid of the annoying advertising and can remove the watermark at the same time.
A similar, albeit less extensive, the range can be found on these platforms, among others:
- However, at MakeAGif, you can upload pictures directly from the webcam
- Gickr’s offer includes small GIF files made up of a maximum of 10 individual images
- MySpaceGens allows you to adjust the GIF size to the purpose.
WhatsApp: Make memes the mobile way
iOS and Android users can also assemble and send GIFs in WhatsApp. The function is hidden directly in the messenger app: Open WhatsApp and start a new chat. Alternatively, you can, of course, also select an existing conversation.
- Record a short video sequence or select an existing video from the gallery. Please note: WhatsApp GIFs have a maximum length of seven seconds. Longer lines must be shortened before conversion.
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