How to Make an Animated Gif in Photoshop

Animated gifs have been used since basically the dawning of the internet. GIF(Graphical Interchange Format) are image files that move. The gif format is so widely used because it can be easily loaded on just about any device. They can be used for a wide variety of things from showing you how the gears in a clock function, to a funny clip from a television show.  Here I will be showing you how to make a simple animated gif with the use of Photoshop.

For the gif I am making today you will need 3 things; an image file, a video file and Photoshop. If you have access to Adobe Premiere Pro you may find this program to also be useful for cutting up your video clip into the exact segments you want. However it is not a necessary step so I won’t go into that any further.

My Goal is to animate the iris of an eye. To do this, import the original image of an eye.original image

Next use the background eraser tool and erase the iris so that it is transparent.

background eraser

Now you will need to import your video file, go to File > Import > Video frames to layers
This will allow you to edit every single frame of your video clip.

Video frames to layers

After you import your video frames to layers, change your workspace for animation. Go to Window > Workspace > Motion

Motion Workspace 1

Motion Workspace 2

Now go back to the eye we edited earlier, right click on the layer and “Duplicate Layer”, for the destination choose the name you have chosen for your video layers. For this demonstration my video layers are titled “Untitled-1”

Duplicate Layer 1

Duplicate Layer 2

Next take the image of the eye and stretch it to fit the size of the video layer. After you do this make sure you have every single frame/layer highlighted in your horizontal motion layer workspace. Then on your right take the layer for the eye and bring it to the very top so it is on top of every single frame and layer.

Eye Layer to the TOP

After you have done this it is time to save this as a gif. Go to file > Save for Web. If you have a large file this may take some time to load. My gif was quite large so I dropped my image size percentage down to 25%

Save for Web

Once you have done this you can click preview, to see how your gif will look in a browser. If you are pleased with the end result click save and now you have created your first animated gif!

CLICK ME

CLICK ME!

 

Quickly add a shaded border to an image in Adobe Photoshop

In this tutorial, we’ll see how to quickly add a shaded border to a photo in Adobe Photoshop like so:

slide 5

Begin by opening your photo of choice.

slide 1

Next, create a new layer, by going to “Layer > New Layer” (or, by using the keyboard shortcut “Ctrl + Shift + N” on Windows or “Cmd + Shift + N” on a Mac). Click on the new layer in the layers panel on the right to make sure it is selected, and then select the Paint Bucket tool in the tools panel on the left. Pick the foreground color you would like to use for your shaded border (in this example we use black, but you can use any color) and then fill the new layer with your color of choice.

slide 2

After filling the new layer, we will use the Rectangular Marquee Tool to create our border. Select the tool, and make sure its Feather attribute (located in the upper left) is greater than 0. Depending on the size of your image, and how much of a border you want visible, this will vary. My image is quite large so I have a feather of 80 pixels, however a small image may work best with only 12 pixels. After choosing a feather radius, drag and select the entire size of your canvas. You can begin outside the upper left corner and drag over the whole image to make sure you have it selected completely over each edge. When you release holding your mouse-click, the rectangle will now show a dotted line with curved edges. If the curve is too large or small for what you want to do, simply change the feather radius and try again.

slide 3

Now that we have our feathered selection, press the delete key or go to “Edit > Cut” to clear the middle of the full color layer. Your original photo will now show through underneath with the added border on top.

slide 4

Experiment with different colors and feather radii to see what you can create!

slide 6

 

Website Design

Have you ever dreamed of designing your own website? By taking advantage of the free and discounted software offered by IT User Services your dream may be closer than you think. One of the best tools available for website design is Adobe Dreamweaver. Dreamweaver gives users the ability to design and edit webpages using HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP, etc. The software is available through the Adobe Campus Agreement for select faculty, staff, and students. You can see if you are eligible for the program by logging in at : http://www.oit.umass.edu/support/software/adobe-campus-agreement-no-cost-software-faculty-staff Continue reading

Top 5 Open Source Applications

Software Giants vs. the Open Source Initiative:

Open Source Logo

In the last decade and a half, an unknown number of tech companies have sprung up and established themselves as booming enterprises overnight. Its pretty safe to say that there has never been growth like that in such little time, ever. Unfortunately, buying that software is the only option when you want a high quality product. Even though the latest Adobe Software Creative Suite might be some of the best editing software out there, it’s priced at $2,600, or about the cost of a Umass Unlimited Meal Plan. Do you want to pay for high end software; or eat? For software that your job depends on it, maybe, but not for the average user. In the end, software has hit a dilemma: either have expensive, professional software, or don’t have any at all. Continue reading