How to Make GIFs

by Carlye Jones ; Updated September 22, 2017

Items you will need

  • Photo editing software

  • Digital or scanned artwork or photograph

Want your web pages to load faster? Trying to figure out how to make an online animation? Need images or art that takes up less memory space? The answer is to make GIFs.Graphics Interchange Format is the long way of saying it, but the short result of a GIF is that it takes up less space and therefore results in web pages that load quicker, more open disk space and lower bandwidth rates. It's so simple to make GIFs that you'll wonder why you haven't done it before.

Choose your picture or art.It's simple to make GIFs from any digital artwork or photographs. As long as it's scanned into a computer and can be opened with your photo editing software you can easily turn it into a GIF. Images such as line art, illustrations and drawings tend to make better GIFs than photographs.

Open the artwork or photograph you have chosen in your photo editing software and make any desired changes. If you want to crop, resize or make any other changes to your artwork or picture, do it now. Keep in mind the ultimate use of the GIF you will make. Remember that because GIFs are smaller files some details and colors will be lost. That is why they are best suited to drawings and photographs with fewer colors.

Convert your file to a GIF.After you have made any desired changes to your artwork or digital picture, you're ready to make a GIF. This method will work for the majority of photo editing software programs. If you run into difficulty, consult the instructions for your software.Go to "File" and click on "Save As." When the dialogue box opens, look for the option that allows you to change the file type. On most software this will be below the image name. Simply choose ".gif" as the file type. If you don't see a choice of file types, simply type your file name followed by ".gif". For example, if my photo is named Picture01, then I would save it as "Picture01.gif".Complete the save and now you know how to make GIFs.

Tip

  • If your photo editing software offers a preview function, take advantage of it to make sure your GIF looks good before saving. The smaller file size of a GIF means that you have lost quality in the process. Double-check your image to make sure it's not very noticeable to the naked eye.

Tip

  • Use photographs with lots of detail that you want to keep.