I’ve been getting a lot of asks about my gif styles. Personally, I believe that there are other gif artists that are a thousand times better than me and you should be bothering them instead of me. <3 And this will be a very long tutorial so all of the giffy goodness will go under a cut! Alas, let’s begin!
Downloads/Programs you will need:
Step One: Screencaptures.
Open KM Player.
After opening KM player, right click and go to "Open File(s)"
Once you click on “Open File(s)”, a pop-up window will appear asking you what video you want to open. Simply find your designated video and wait for KM player to run the video. If you want to make HD gifs, always use an .mkv file with a 720 resolution or higher. It gives the best results!
Find the scene that you want to gif, pause the video momentarily and press ctrl + g. This will open another menu which will help you screencap your desired scene.
The above are the settings that I personally use. You can use the BITMAP format for faster capping, but I like PNG. You don’t have to capture every frame, but make sure that you have enough screencaps available to you, you don’t want your gif to look choppy. A fine example will be pasted below.
See? That’s a terrible gif. You do not want that. That’s what happens when you don’t capture every frame, your gif looks chopped.
Once you have your scene captured, make sure you know which folder all of your screencaptures are stored at. That’s very important. Make sure everything above is completed before moving forward to step two.
Step Two: Sizing, cropping, and organizing.
Open photoshop and wait for it to load. Once it loads go to File > Scripts > Load Files Into Stack.
When you click on that, a new window should open and it looks like this.
Click on Browse and find your screen-capture folder. Mass select all the images you want before pressing OK. All the layers should start loading into one big stack on your photoshop. Make sure you do not load more than eighty frames, it will seriously lag your computer and photoshop.
Once your screen-caps load, it should look something like this.
Right click on the little menu on the animation bar and click on Make Frames into Layers. Once you do that, highlight all of the screencaptures in our animation box and right click the menu and click on Reverse Frames. After that is done, you are now ready to crop the image as you like. My sizes vary depending on what gif I’m going to make, but for this tutorial, I’m making a 500 width gif.
Go to Image > Image Size and set the width to 500PX.
The image should shrink. After that, things will get a little tricky. I’m fairly ANAL. So I like to make sure that all my layers are numbered and organized. Right click on the menu for the animation bar again, click on Flatten Frames into Layers. Make sure that all the images in your animation bar is selected, otherwise it won’t work.
Once you do that, all the layers in your image should have names ‘Frame 1, Frame 2, etc’. Select all of them and make a new group folder and drag all the files inside. Delete all the prior frames that are left.
Your end result for step two should look something like this.
Step Three: Sharpening + Coloring + Finishing Touches.
Now that you’ve completed step one and two, you are ready to color. Whether you use PSDs or make your own coloring, make sure that you color your image first! Do not sharpen until you’ve colored your image.
If you don’t use PSD’s and have no idea how to color, stick with the basics. Add a curve layer to brighten your image, add a Brightness & Contrast layer to remove excess contrast from your image, and finish with a few Selective Coloring/Color Balance layers to saturate your image. Try to refrain from using Vibrance, tumblr always has issues loading gifs with too much vibrance.
Now you’re ready to sharpen. My sharpen settings are fairly simple. I use smart sharpen and I sharpen each layer with the same setting. These are my smart sharpen settings. You are welcome to tweak with it until it looks right on your gif.
As you can see, this gif is sharpened too much and it looks disgusting. So in this case, you should blur the image a little by using Topaz Denoise. These are my settings.
As you can see now that the Saturation of the image has gone down considerably. That was because the background of this image wasn’t frozen. Should you freeze the background, it gives your gif a higher saturation.
And after you’ve done that, just add your finishing touches. Ex: captions or textures. And your end result should look like this.
Last, but certainly not least, here are my gif save settings.
If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to ask me!