How to Make a GIF Using Photoshop | Photoshop Timeline Tutorial
You might have used Photoshop for a lot of things. But today we are going to learn how to make a GIF using Photoshop. It would be helpful for those who are looking forward to create a cool gif logo because stagnant picture logos are passe. Also, it would come in handy when you are trying to pursue your video editing dreams.
Things you need for this are:
- Adobe Photoshop (any version really)
- Brain (Really important!)
So, if you have thought about what your logo’s gonna be like, I don’t see why wasting your time should be an option. Let’s get started on how to make a GIF using Photoshop.
How to Make a GIF using Photoshop
Before we begin our steps the very first step would be to, of course, download and install photoshop. The latest version is available on the official website of Adobe. Here’s the link for it:
They give you a free trial of sorts. Then when you begin to get a hang of it, you can purchase it as well.
Click on the ‘Ps’ symbol that says Photoshop next to it. Once the downloading concludes open the setup and install it.
Alright, you past that phase already? Let’s begin the steps to learn how to make a gif using photoshop now.
We will create a shape for our logo and then perform a random animation on it.
Steps to Make a GIF
Step 1: Open Photoshop. I hope you can see the following screen:
Step 2: Click on File > New
A new dialog box would open that would be asking for inputs on how you want your canvas to be like. You can specify the width and height based on your requirement. I am going to let it stay at default.
Step 3: Give an apt title to your project. I am going to call it “Logo Experiment” and then click on Ok.
Step 4: When you click on Ok you will find a blank white screen staring at you. Good.
How to Create a Custom Shape in Photoshop
Step 5: Click on the Ellipsis tool that is being shown towards the left and then on the Custom Shape Tool that has an amoeba like symbol:
Once that is selected, it will provide you an option named shape at the top bar.
Step 6: Click on the dropdown next to it. You will see a whole bunch of custom made shapes that will be useful in deciding what shape you want for your logo.
If the options that are being suggested aren’t what you are looking for you can click on the small star symbol next to it and then have more options.
I am going to go ahead and select the cat print option that Photoshop has.
Step 7: Whatever shape you have selected, draw that on the canvas by selecting and dragging across the white page.
As you can see there was a default color automatically selected in my Photoshop window and hence the color black is already there.
The concept of Video Timeline
Time to introduce you to the concept of timeline. You see since you need to animate you must know what timeline is. Look at timeline as the bar on Youtube or Vimeo the one that lets you skip forward or backward at any point. What happens when you click on the bar ahead of time, doesn’t it change the current state? Here our current state of frame is a black paw.
For animation to actually mean something we need to make changes to the current state or frame. If we start making the changes right here, it will also change the current frame. Hence we need to skip ahead in time and make changes there so that when you go back you have the same black paw with you. And that when you move forward the state of that black paw changes to something else.
Let’s try this and you will understand it more.
Step 8: Go to Window > Timeline
Doing so will open a timeline on the bottom side of your workspace.
Step 9: Click on Create Video Timeline and it will make the timeline look something like this:
Step 10: Time to drag the purple bar from the end. Take your mouse cursor to the right end and drag the layer from the right side towards left.
This is to give you an impression that each layer will be treated as one keyframe. Whatever you do on a particular layer will stay for its particular moment of run time.
Creating a Duplicate Layer
Step 11: Right click on the Shape 1 layer on the right-hand side and click on Duplicate layer…
Give an apt name to the new layer. I am going to simply call my layer ‘2nd Layer’. Click on Ok.
Step 12: Now drag and drop the newly created layer in the same line of Shape 1. And make sure it is placed next to the first frame of Shape 1.
Doing so will create a Video Group 1.
Time to edit our baby.
Let’s snip these fingers one by one like a psycho.
Step 13: Time to edit the 2nd layer. Click on the 2nd layer and then on the timeline from where the 2nd layer starts.
Step 14: Select the direct selection tool which is located in the following area (shaped like a white mouse arrow pointer)
Step 15: Drag and select one of the fingers. Make sure you are not selecting others as well. Be careful!
Step 16: Now when the finger is selected press the delete button.
The finger should get snipped now.
Step 17: Repeat steps 11 to 16 now for the rest of the fingers by adding 3rd and 4th layer. I am going to leave the second finger intact so as to give an impression that this cat is giving you the finger. 😛
When you are done your timeline should look something like this:
The last one looks like a man too. You are free to play around and see what it could become in the end. You can also add some Text underneath it so that it says your brand name.
I will leave the rest of the exercise to you.
Saving your GIF
Step 18: Your timeline has a play button on it which you can use to see how the animation looks like. Based on how frequently you want the frames to change you can drag and customize your layers. Feel free to play around.
Step 19: When you are done it is time to save your work as a gif. You can do so by going to File > Export > Save for Web (Legacy)….
The dialog box for Save for Web should open something like this:
You can choose to edit the image size or canvas size from here.
Step 20: On the top right-hand side make sure the GIF option is selected. When you are ready click on Save…
Then give an apt name to your GIF file and save.
Time to check your logo out:
Now that you have learnt how to make a GIF using Photoshop start creating your own logos. Post them in the comments section to get a WOW!
If you liked the section of How to Make a GIF using Photoshop check out the Adobe category for more cool stuff related to Adobe products.