Make GIF Animated Images in Photoshop [Video included]

Make GIF images in Adobe Photoshop, that allows you to create basic frame-by-frame animation, perfect for amateur animators. These animated images are then saved in the GIF format, viewable in Internet Explorer, or upload them to Google+

In this tutorial, I will show you how to make GIF animated pictures in Adobe Photoshop, how to save them & also how they can be viewed.

TrickVilla animated GIF Demo
TrickVilla animated GIF Demo

We will solely use Photoshop, Adobe ImageReady is not required in this tutorial.


For this tutorial, you will need the following:

  1. Adobe Photoshop 7 or above (We will use Photoshop CS5 for this tutorial)
  2. Any image to be animated
  3. Internet Explorer or any other GIF viewer

Tutorial to Make GIF Animation

For this tutorial, I will use a landscape pic as the background & will animate the sun across its sky, moving from morning to evening.

I will also make text appear & disappear in this animated GIF picture.

For this, I will need the following 2 different images:


the sun
1. Open both images in Photoshop, one will serve as background & the other will be animated.

2. I will now create 3 text layers, namely Sunrise, Noon & Sunset using the text tool.

make 3 text layers

3. Now let’s start to make GIF animation! Go to Window menu & select Animation. A new Animation palette will open up, with a frame in it. This is the first frame of your frame-by-frame animation.

animation palette

5. Now, for the first frame of our animation, we need the sun at its initial position & the text Sunrise. So, hide the other 2 text layers by clicking the eye icon beside them & position the sun & text Sunrise appropriately.

hide layers for first frame

6. Now click on the first frame in animation palette & click the icon for Duplicate Selected Frames. A new frame will now be created.

make new frame in animation palette for animated gif in Photoshop

7. In this frame, we want the sun to move up, so first click the sun layer & using the Move Tool (V) re-position the sun. Also, hide the Sunrise text layer, to make the text disappear in this frame.

hide sunrise layer in second frame for animated gif in photoshop

8. Repeat the process 7 covering noon as well as sunset to make the GIF appealing.

sunset frame in animated gif in photoshop

9. These 4 frames we have created are called keyframes. Now, we need to bring them in motion, for which we will use motion tweening. Select second frame & click on the Motion Tweening button.

motion tween in animated gif in photoshop

10. In the tween window that opens, edit the settings exactly as the one in the screenshot below & apply the same settings & method for remaining 3 keyframes.

tween window in animated gif in photoshop

11. You will get a string of frames after this. Select the last frame & set its delay time (time for which the animation stops before moving forward) to nearly 2 seconds.

set delay time in animated gif in photoshop

TIP: You may click on Forever button on the bottom-left corner of animation palette & choose to end your animation after 1 iteration, 2 iterations & so on, or loop it forever.

12. Now click the play button in animation palette to play your animated image. 😉

Play animation in animated gif in photoshop

13. Time to save this image! Go to file & click on Save for Web & Devices. In the dialog box that opens, leave settings as they are & click save button. Save your image to any location & you’re done!

save for web Play an animated gif in photoshop

14. Close or minimize Photoshop & open the saved GIF image in Internet Explorer or any other GIF viewer. See the magic 😀

PS: Due to the huge size of the animated GIF I created during this tutorial, I cannot upload it here. Refer the image at beginning of this tutorial for a demo.

Video Tutorial

Author: Ishaan Garg

Co-Founder, Admin at TrickVilla, am a tech geek. My areas of interest include multimedia editing, SEO, web-designing, gadgets & more.

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