Animated gif and Happy New Year… :)

I am done with 75 % of my Master in Science degree… almost. I still need to finish my thesis proposal but I think I am doing good on that front and that is why I decided to take a little break from work during the last week. But given the restless person I am, I ended up cleaning my hard disk and organizing my data from my laptop which broke two years ago. Since that happened just as I had finished my internship and before start of semester, I had just copied my data on an external hard drive and forgotten it… till I found it last week. And among that days I found the following file:

Animated Logo
This is the logo of the project I was working on at Fraunhofer ITWN called SynPlan. The static version of this logo existed already when I started working on the project, but as the synchronization in my part of the code took a few seconds, I added a progress bar, and since it was not cool enough, I decided to surprise my supervisor with this gem. Everyone loved it… And given I managed to create the logo in a German language software, it is very easy to do. I will now show you how to do it with a couple of examples highlighting a few features I find particularly interesting.

Since I was a total Photoshop noob at that time, I took the original logo and make six copies of it and used paint to create 6 images which would then be the 6 frames of my animation. However, you could achieve the same effect using layers as I will show now.

So I want to make an animated greeting card. The basic image .psd can be downloaded from here. First thing to do is to enable the animation window. This is done as shown:

Now you see that the image that we are currently working on can be seen here as a frame. Since I want the animation to start off as blank, uncheck all layers except the original picture. This can be seen in the picture below. Now we will start with the animation. What we want to do now is create a new frame. This is seen in the image below, at the bottom of the image, where the mouse can be seen.

Now select the “Happy” layer and click the new frame button. Repeat this with “New” and click the new frame button. You will end up in the following situation:

Keep doing this for “Year” and “2012”. You get the point, right? :).

You can also select the time below the frame to indicate how long you wish to show it in the animation. You can select multiple frames using “Shift” key. You are done. You can now export the image as shown below.

I always prefer if the animated gif always end up in the same frame as they start. This makes them seem to go on forever without interruptions.

To do this, I will be using another cool feature in Photoshop. This feature automatically creates frames between two given frames. For example, if you have two frames where a layer is moving from one side to another, this feature will create frames in the middle to make the movement less obvious.

To do this, create a new frame, select the group of “Happy New Year” and move it out of the image as can be seen below:

Now select the last frame from the animated window, and click the menu button in the above image. Now select the option shown below:

Select the number of frames you want created, and the frames to use.

Now adjust the timings, and you are done. 🙂

 You can now export the image as a gif. This is done from “Save for Web & Devices..”. Select the required size, and save the image.

Many websites disable animated gif unless the image is expanded. Choose smaller size of the image.

You will end up with following image :

A few other images I created recently:

and yeahh…

HAPPY NEW YEAR 🙂

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