Displaying a GIF as Your Profile Picture on Tumblr

By Tammy Columbo

Use a GIF image instead of a self portrait for your Tumblr avatar.
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You can change your Tumblr profile photos for any of your blogs to a GIF image. If your blogs have different focuses, you might want to choose a different profile photo, or avatar, for each blog. You can choose to have a GIF image instead of a photo of yourself, as your Tumblr profile photo, if you choose.

Tumblr Profile Photos

Tumblr profile photos, also called portrait photos or avatars, display with each of your posts in your followers’ timelines. Users can hover over the avatar to see a menu of options for communicating with you. If you have enabled Ask or Reply functionality on the blog, your followers can message you from this menu.

Convert Existing Image to GIF

If you have a copy of your Tumblr avatar saved on your computer, you can convert the image to a GIF file using Microsoft Paint. Open the image in Paint and modify the image as desired. For example, you can crop or resize the image before converting it to the GIF format. Click the “File” tab, then click “Save As.” Click the GIF option in the Save As menu. Click “Save” to save a copy of the image as a GIF.

Change Profile Photo

Open your Tumblr dashboard, then click the “Settings” icon in the top menu to open the Settings page. Click the name of the blog to update in the left menu to open the Settings menu for the selected blog. Click the “Change Avatar” button to open the file selection dialog box, then browse to the GIF file. Click the file, then click “Open.” Click “Save” to save the new image. The Profile Photo upload form also gives you the option to take a snapshot using your device's camera.


Images that are sized to 128 x 128 and larger work best for Tumblr avatars. Your avatar background can be transparent. You can upload one avatar per blog associated with your Tumblr account. Avatars must be in a compatible Tumblr-format (GIF, JPG, PNG or BMP). The size limitations for uploaded images are 10MB for static GIFs and 1MB for animated GIFs.