This Make is opportunity to learn how to make an animated GIF from any YouTube video using the Giphy Gifmaker. As an experiment it’s interesting to see what portion of the same clip people will isolate from the source video.

To practice making GIFs, all responses will use this same clip of Blanco Canyon Sequence of the movie Big Country (1958). You do not need to know anything about the movie (it’s just a typical and problematic Western, cowboys and horses, etc), but use your imagination to find what seems like an important or interesting moment. Something you can isolate in just a few seconds in a looping GIF.

In movies like this, look for facial expressions in characters, interchanges between characters, action sequences.

It’s not required but if you think you might create more than just one GIF, you can start by creating an account on giphy. This will make it easy to find ones you have made, and it creates a nifty portfolio for all gifs you make there.

The Giphy GIF Maker allows you several ways to create animated gifs.

We use with the bottom option entering the URL for a YouTube or vimeo source video. Paste in the URL for this video

This brings up a (silent) view of the video and the Trim Video controls you can use to select a portion of the video to make into a GIF. With giphy you can select up to ten seconds of any video clip to generate as a GIF (3-5 seconds is a better length to keep the file size smaller).

That’s not very much! The art is finding a loop that does not appear too jerky.

Pick the start point and how many seconds your GIF will last. Aim to make as smooth a loop as possible

Use the bottom slider to select the start time of the GIF and the bottom one to pick it’s length. The preview will show you the loop for just this selection. Aim for the shortest length possible but also that makes use of the looping point to emphasize something important in the clip.

But wait, you are not done yet! You can also add a caption to your GIF, give it dialogue. Click the Continue to Decorate button to add a caption, stickers, and even paint on the image.

Adding a text caption with the “Decorate” tools

For the first GIF, add a caption which perhaps comments on the scene or what you imagine the dialogue might be. You can choose from color, text style, even animation effects. Click the text box to drag and even rotate. There is not a way to change the size, but experiment with adding blank space on either side of the text to make it smaller.

If you like, add stickers, filter effects, and even paint on the gif.

When you are satisfied, click Continue to Upload to generate your new GIF. Review, maybe add a netnarr tag, make sure the public option is on, and click Upload to Giphy.

Once your GIF has been created you will see it has its own URL (example) and a set of options for downloading or sharing in social media. Make sure you use the URL of your creation when you enter your response to this Make.

Keep a record of the link to your GIF.

Now go back, and make a second one, but in this GIF, do not add any caption text. What can you suggest or indicate with the looping video only?

In your response share some of the reasons that you chose a segment and what you imagined happening. What are you able to communicate? Use either GIF link for the example in your response, and make sure you include the URL to the second GIF in your response.

For the example in this Make, we have the captioned version, which alludes to a lack of good cellular service

Animated GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

and the one without, which the cowboy is clearly frustrated and not in control of anything, least of all, his GIF!

Animated GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Example for "Many GIFs From One [Western] Video":

Animated GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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After you do this make, please share it so it can appear with other responses below. If your response exists at a public viewable URL, you can add the information directly to this site.

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This work by Alan Levine is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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