|delicia (tetris) wrote in rp_tutorials,|
@ 2011-02-13 03:45:00
|Entry tags:||images: animation, resources: tutorials|
GIF MAKING 101.
What you need is Photoshop CS5 (which I'm using/is shown here), or something similar. I do have it on good authority that it should work with earlier versions of CS. Other programs, I'm not too sure, but I think it could be translateable!
Alright, so. You need an .AVI or .MPG or .MP4 video. Now, what I've been doing is using Youtube videos, popping them in at http://keepvid.com/, and downloading them from there. This is pretty much the easiest way to get your starter video. It does also work with movies, though! So, there's that. Now, in Photoshop you need to go to WINDOWS > ANIMATION and make sure it's selected. It should look like this:
Which will bring up THIS bar at the bottom of the screen:
This is important. You will be using this. Now, what you need to do is go to FILE > OPEN, and select your video that you're planning to use. Press enter, or whatever you do to load a file in Photoshop. That isn't too tricky, right? Give your browser a moment or two to load. Mine usually takes a little while because I have a slow laptop made of failure. Either way, leave it well alone until it loads and you're able to see something. I should maybe add I'm using THIS video of Kemp Muhl, a model and spokesperson for Covergirl. I'm using her at darwinisms, so that was the motivation behind this tutorial.
Alright! Are we loaded? Yes? Do you see something similar to this?
Then we're good to go. You're half way there. I want you to direct your attention to the bottom of the screen from before. The ANIMATION (TIMELINE) section. Do you see this slider?
When you move that back and forth, you're basically going through your movie clip. You can see an example of this below, with Kemp's goofy little puckered face.
The slider is important in determining where you want your gif to begin and end. However, it does not do this job solely on its own. What you really need to focus on is the little dash below it. This one:
This will be vital in seeing where your gif begins and ends. And as you'll see, there's one on either side of the bar. These will represent the beginning and end of your gif. Alright, now, using the slider from before, you will slide it to where you want your gif to begin, and then bring that second nub to align with it. This is shown below for those of you who are confused (as I don't explain myself well, obviously):
See how that lower nub just touches the side of the slider? That's good. The display on the screen where your movie is shows where your gif will start. Now, leaving the lower nub in its spot, you need to do the same thing again with the upper slider, but basically from the other end of the scale, like so:
See how you've got only a small portion of highlighted white? That's your gif, basically. You've done almost all the work. However, one of the bright sides I've noticed in using Photoshop for this is that you can actually edit it like you would any other picture! Because the video was a bit too dark for what I wanted, I was able to use BRIGHTEN, CONTRAST, and CURVES. Just don't merge the layers when you're done. Leave it open. You can also resize the video as well. It doesn't affect the gif at all. It just makes it smaller. No big deal.
Now, when you're done editing and you're pleased with the length of your gif/how it looks, it's time to save it. To do this, you need to go to FILE > SAVE FOR WEB & DEVICES as shown below:
Now, this is another step you have to pay careful attention to. Again, the program will stall for a moment or two while it loads, but a new box will come up that looks like this:
What you need to do is go to the box highlighted by the orange arrow. You need to click on the drop-down menu of LOOPING OPTIONS, and select FOREVER. This is important. Otherwise, your gif will play once and that's it. And that looks silly, doesn't it? Then you press SAVE. Name your gif file whatever you like. Click through on the options. Don't change anything.
Now, just for fun, compare these two I made. One using gifsoup and the other using photoshop:
A FEW WARNINGS: Don't make your gif too long, or too big. And don't attempt this on a temperamental computer that hates you, if you value your sanity. If you've followed the steps correctly you should have your very own, handmade gif! Enjoy!