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How to Make a GIF - Ultimate Guide to GIF

Emanuel Pires
Emanuel Pires Originally published May 22, 24, updated Jul 03, 24
Man reacting GIF

Without a doubt, the most popular image format on the internet is GIF. Similarly to memes and emojis, animated GIFs have become more popular than ever on social media. These animated GIFs provide people with the opportunity to connect with their audience on a more emotional level by eliciting emotions on the spot.

It is easy to search for animated GIFs online from different genres, or you can put your imagination to work to make unique GIFs that show off your uniqueness. This is the summary of the different methods and multiple-purpose comprehensive guides that are compatible with the different platforms. Learn GIF creation techniques.

In this article
  1. What Is A GIF?
  2. How Do You Create An Animated GIF From A Video?
  3. How to Make GIF Files Using UniConverter?
  4. How Do You Create a GIF on an iPhone?
  5. How to Use Android to Create a GIF?
  6. How to Use Photoshop to Make a GIF?
  7. Types of GIFs
  8. Conclusion

What Is a GIF?

The Graphic Interchange Format, abbreviated as GIF, is a digital image format that is widely used on the internet. Introduced in 1987 by Steve Wilhite, GIFs became very popular because they not only support static but also animated images as well. In contrast, with the typical video files, GIFs play in a looping cycle without the need for an external media player. Thanks to this, such cartoons are perfectly suited to be shared as visual short stories to convey feelings or funny or dramatic situations.

GIFs are instrumental in digital communication and appear in a variety of digital content ranging from email to social media platforms, where they add a new dimension to the interactions. This is due to their simplicity and the fact that they are easy to include in text messages as well as posts, which gives them the power to tell visual stories and express reactions. Being compressed files, they load fast, thereby improving user experience that entails viewing visual content without delays in the process.

How Do You Create an Animated GIF From a Video?

Learning how to make a GIF from a video involves simply taking a video clip and converting it into a GIF format. You may have often seen funny GIFs on Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. Most of the GIFs are created from videos, including TV shows, films, and celebrity interviews.

A GIF generator is available from GIPHY, the popular animated GIF search engine. This online tool converts YouTube URLs to GIFs and supports submitted videos on PC browsers.

Step 1

Open the GIPHY Create page. To upload a video from your computer, click Choose File. Alternatively, you may use the video URL to convert a YouTube video to GIF.

Step 2

To use the service, you must first register as a user. To register and log into GIPHY, follow the steps.

Step 3

Choose the beginning and ending points of the section you wish to save as an animated GIF on the video editing screen. To carefully choose the segment by frame, make use of its timeline manipulation features. Once you have selected the duration, click Continue to Create.

GIF trimming video
Step 4

Creating an animated GIF online simply takes a few seconds. To save the GIF to your PC, click Download. It is also possible to publish it to GIPHY for public viewing.

Download GIF

See the GIF that was animated using GIPHY:

Rachel reacting GIF

How to Make GIF Files Using Uniconverter?

GIF files are widely used to include text and animated pictures that resemble videos. The article that follows will show you how to use the GIF Maker to create GIFs in just three easy steps.

When you launch Wondershare UniConverter on your computer, the primary features are listed on the left side of the main screen. Select Tools > GIF Maker from the menu.

Uniconverter GIF maker

You may now choose to convert Videos to GIF or Photos to GIF by opening a new window. Select the "Photos to GIF" menu.

Uniconverter GIF

Convert Photos to GIF

Windows-compatible input image formats include JPG, JPEG, PNG, and BMP.

Step 1Add Photos To The Software
Uniconverter photo GIF maker

To browse and load the picture from your computer, click the plus symbol in the middle of the window or the add files button in the upper left corner.

 Step 2Set GIF Preference

In the bottom-left section, specify the file location, frame rate, and output size.

Uniconverter GIF maker preference
Step 3Create GIF

Click Create Gif button to start converting photos to GIF.

Uniconverter GIF maker create GIF

Turn Video to GIF

Video formats for Windows input that are supported are MP4, M4V, 3GP, MPEG, MPG, AVI, MOV, VOB, MKV, DAT, ASF, WMV, and 3GS films.

 Step 1Add Video to the Interface

To import the video using which you need to make a GIF, go to the Video in GIF tab and click the + symbol or the Add files button in the upper-left corner.

Uniconverter Video GIF maker
Step 2Select the Video Clip

Choose the video clip you want to convert to a GIF. Either move the side lay under the video, or type in the precise start and finish times in the vacant space.

 Select the Video Clip
Step 3Make a GIF and Set a GIF Preference

After adjusting the file location, frame rate, and output size to your satisfaction, click Create Gif to continue.

Uniconverter GIF maker video preferences

You've now created your GIFs! Impress your pals straight now by sharing.

How Do You Create a GIF on an iPhone?

Learning how to make GIF with iPhone is quite straightforward, allowing you to transform live photos into animated GIFs effortlessly. Take these easy actions:

Step 1

Locate the Live Photo that you wish to convert to a GIF by opening the Photos app. Images that capture a brief moment of action and sound are known as live photos.

Step 2

Tap on your Live Photo to make it visible after you've chosen it. You may now swipe up on the image to see the Effects area. This is the location of the magic!

Step 3

You can choose between Loop, Bounce, and Long Exposure under the Effects area. You may create a GIF out of your Live Photo by using these effects. Choose "Loop" for a traditional GIF effect that loops.

Iphone GIF maker
Step 4

Tap "Done" in the upper-right corner of the screen after selecting the effect you want. Your Live Photo will be magically transformed into a GIF by your iPhone.

Step 5

Your GIF and Live Photo will both be stored in your Photos collection after the conversion is finished. Now that your GIF has been generated, you may show it to friends and family and enjoy it together.

How to Use Android to Create a GIF?

Most Android phones come with built-in capability for creating GIFs. On the other hand, various brands have distinct settings and possibilities. Some of the iPhones, like the iPhone, include a moving photo button that covers the camera screen. This function may be found in Settings for some. By long-pressing the circular Capture symbol on the screen, the others streamline the procedure.

In this section, Huawei is used as an example to show how to create a GIF with images, showing step-by-step conversion techniques.

Step 1 Enable Moving Picture Mode

First, turn on the Moving Picture function by going to the camera settings. This is how you are able to capture moving photos that you can then convert into GIFs.

  • Open your Camera app: The camera icon can be found either on the home screen or in the app drawer; tap it to open it.
  • Go to Camera Settings: Find the gear icon, which is usually located at the top corner of the screen, and tap on it.
  • Enable Moving Picture: Keep scrolling until you find the "Moving Picture" option in the settings. Switch it to turn on.
Step 2 Capture a Moving Picture
Android GIF maker

You can now have up to 20 seconds to record your favorite moment and generate a GIF.

  • Return to the Camera: Leave the Settings to go back to Camera Viewfinder.
  • Take a Moving Picture: Press the shutter button to capture your moving image. Hold your phone steadily as you shoot the action.
Step 3 Save as GIF

When you are already done with capturing a moving picture, the next step is to transform it into a GIF using the Gallery app.

  • Open the Gallery: Once you quit the camera, your photos will show up in the Gallery app.
  • Find Your Moving Picture: Scroll through the gallery and see the beautiful image you just took.
  • Convert to GIF: Tap the video to watch it, and then click the three-dot menu icon. Click on it and choose "Save as GIF" from the menu list.

How to Use Photoshop to Make a GIF?

Discovering how to make a GIF in Photoshop is simple, allowing you to use creative tools to animate frame-by-frame graphics. Learning how to add motion is a terrific way to elevate your artwork, whether you want to make a GIF animation for pleasure, a profession, or education.

 Let's begin by creating a basic frame-by-frame animation for this Photoshop lesson, which we will later convert into a looping GIF. A set of pictures is all you need to get started. Any kind of image can be used, including still photos, animation frames, and video frames.

Step 1 After Uploading Your Photos, Open the Photoshop File and See Each Frame as a Layer

If you'd like, you can create your frames ahead of time using some other application, such as Adobe Illustrator. Next, choose File > Load Layers in Photoshop to import the image frames (source files). To load several files into an image stack, select them, add all the frames, and then click OK.

You may use any Photoshop file with several layers if you haven't previously made the frames. Just make sure that every frame (or folder/group of layers) in your animation has its layer. Open the layer you were originally in.

Photoshop Layers Panel
Step 2 Click Create Frame Animation From the Timeline Window

Click Create Frame Animation under Window > Timeline while your Photoshop layers are open.

Photoshop Timeline Panel
Step 3 Make Your Layers Into Frames for Animation

From the menu located in the Timeline panel's right corner, choose Create Frames From Layers. This will enable you to divide your layers into individual window frames.

Photoshop Timeline Panel GIF

You may use the computer's spacebar or the Play button on the Timeline to get a preview of the animation. By only sliding the frames, you may experiment with their arrangement. To create a new frame, use the sticky note icon, and to remove an existing one, use the trash can icon.

Step 4 Put Your GIF on a Loop

To make your GIF loop, choose the repeat menu option. You may choose how long the GIF should loop and how long each frame stays on screen inside the Timeline. (Most of the GIFs have a Forever loop.)

Photoshop Timeline loop options
Step 5 Save and Export Your GIF

After you're satisfied with your animated GIF, choose File > Export > Save for Web (Legacy) to export it. Next, ensure that it is saved as a GIF in the appropriate location.

Photoshop Export

Types of GIFs

Now that you are proficient in creating GIFs for every platform let's unveil the wonders of GIFs and their numerous types. Everything from reaction GIFs to cinematographic ones will probably be there for you to make use of.

• Reaction GIFs

Among GIFs, reaction ones are the most dominant. These are scenes when people or characters either laugh, have joy, or grit their teeth, etc. For example, the Michael Jackson popcorn GIF, in which he is seated and looking happy, can be considered. There is nothing better to relax and enjoy every moment played.

• Meme GIFs

GIF memes are an inseparable part of the digital realm. These are the clips or pictures that are usually short and have funny or catchy lines. Look at the "Distracted Boyfriend" meme. You know the one where she looks on in disbelief when he looks at another girl, though? It is now considered a default meme when there is either temptation or treachery.

• Cinemagraphs

Conventional GIFs lack the sensitivity and artistic touch that cinematography provides. They are still only images with some minor movement applied. Consider a picture of nature with a light breeze blowing the trees or soft steam going up from your coffee cup. Cinemagraphs are for modern effects and provide a chill and enigmatic tone for your GIF collection.

• Text GIFs

Text GIFs are GIFs with text overlays, generally as the name of GIFs suggests. They provide good options for visually impressive message presentation or highlighting the point. Take, for instance, a GIF of a cat typing away like the wind on a keyboard and the words "Work Work Work" popping up at the bottom. It is an addictive, imaginative, and creative way to spice up your online chats and make them more personalized.

• Stop-Motion GIFs

GIFs consist of still images and look like small-scale movies. They are made by stitching together photos of an item or a scene to make it appear as if it is in motion. Stop-motion GIFs can be effectively used in product demonstrations and do-it-yourself tutorials, which show the steps in a fun and informative way. Remember some catchy edible GIFs where something comes up to make a tasty dinner.


This is how you make GIFs. We've gone from first understanding GIFs to being able to make any GIF on your own. Just to make sure that everything is clear, let's have a short recap before you go ahead and create your cool GIFs. Generating GIFs is not just about sharing funny videos or messages with someone else; rather, it is about expressing oneself uniquely and differently. It's all about adding sizzle to your speeches and social media postings to make them more engaging and captivating.

Yes, it might take some time to get accustomed to it, but we promise you that it will be perfectly worthwhile. Hence, do not worry yourself too much about making mistakes. Experiment with new tools, and, most importantly, have fun! Who knows? Maybe it will be the next viral image the next time you click on Facebook. Therefore, let your imagination run wild and be as creative as you can!

Emanuel Pires
Emanuel Pires Jul 03, 24
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