He then said he wished he could make an animated gif of the dance to use as an avatar. I thought that there must be a way, so I started looking for resources.
I immediately found Glickr and was excited because I thought all I would have to was input the URL to the video and that the utility would create the animated gif. Unfortunately, Glickr threw a nasty php error and didn’t work. Ok, this was going to take a little bit more work and would require a software based solution.
I then discovered creating the animated gif would be easy with Gimp and the Animation Package, which is free, open source and cross platform. Now, I am not a big fan of Gimp as I find it unnecessarily complicated without using step-by-step instructions. But it’s free and almost as good as Photoshop for the average home user.
In this tutorial I am using Gimp 2.4.6.
Ok. First I needed to download the YouTube file. TechCrunch has provided a utility to do this.
I then downloaded and installed Gimp and the Animation package. I found a video that shows how to create an animated gif from a video file, followed the instructions and created the animation for my friend. The video is a little quick so you might find that you need to pause when you are learning the process. If you would like written instructions, I have provided them below.
- Download the Video File.
- Download and install the Gimp files for your operating system. Install the main program first and then the Animation Package second.
- Go to Xtns > Split Video Into Frames > Extract Videorange.
- On the next screen, browse for the video file that you saved and select the button that says Video Range.
- Select the frames that you want in the gif. Mine was from frame 1 to frame 62. Then check the Loop and Play Selection Only boxes. You can test this with the Start Playback Button. When you are satisfied with the frames, select the Ok button. The program will then take a couple of seconds extracting the audio and video.
- Go to Video > Frames to Image and set the From Frames and To Frames to the numbers you selected earlier. In my case, this would be 1 and 62.
- Go to Video > Frames Scale. This will set the size. Make it as small as possible because the animated gif file can be really large.
- Go to File > Save As and make sure to select .gif as the file extension.
- The next screen will ask you to export. Change the first option to animation and leave the other option on indexed rather than changing to grayscale . Then Save.
And here is the animated gif I created from the above video clip.