Photographer Tips: How to Create & Share GIFs

Couple embraces on rocks at windy engagement session

If you haven’t hopped on the creating GIFs bandwagon yet as a photographer–now is the time! I never want to encourage my fellow photographers to keep up with trends for their own sake. But, just because something happening on social media or elsewhere is a trend, that doesn’t mean you should avoid it! It can turn out to be fun and a tool for your business. After having a bunch of fun making GIFs in my business, I’ve landed on some photographer tips to help you create GIFs too!

Why It’s Worth Learning How to Create GIFs

Couple holds hands walking at fall windy engagement session

It’s hard to keep up with the changing trends in our world, especially those that come and go so quickly (remember Clubhouse?). But, I have found that making GIFs is enjoyable and it just makes sense that as photographers we should lead in using these within our posts. This is especially true since GIFs are a medium that creates moving images from photos. As an added bonus, it also shows that you care so much more about your clients by putting in the extra effort it takes to create GIFs.

How to Set Up and Shoot Photos for GIFs

In order to create GIFs, the first tips that photographers need to know is that you must make sure your camera is on continuous HIGH shooting mode (faster shutter works better), and you hold the camera as still as possible. Keeping your camera still and continuing to hold the shutter down will ensure that you get a bunch of photographs in a row and that they are not blurry!

It is OK though if there is very slight movement. Experiment with this and your hands will get a feel for it!

The ideal scenario for creating GIFs is if your couple is comfortable and patient. Once you see a really sweet moment happening then just go for it! The GIF doesn’t always need to be a planned out “Ready, Set, Go” moment. It can just be a natural thing that you happen to capture with a series of photos. This happens sometimes without the couple even knowing it.

Just take a ton of photos at once!

Couple embraces cheek to cheek at fall windy engagement session

With this fall engagement session, it was the windiest and chilliest session I’ve had in a long time. With how amazing these two were, we just laughed the entire time. I took advantage of how comfortable they were and put the wind to good use by capturing this windy hair GIF. I’m always looking for those beautiful moments that happen naturally, rather than trying to push the couple into a specific direction. The less guidance I have to provide the more natural and comfortable they become!

Sometimes, we stage certain shots for fun like closeups on the engagement ring or both of their hands:

I adore getting to know my couples from their engagement sessions all the way through to their wedding day. I just have the sweetest time with these sweetest couples like these two who had a gorgeous fall outdoor wedding

Couple eskimo kisses at boho wedding

This newlywed couple was so precious and their day was so special, so it easily lent itself to some amazing sets of photos that could be turned into GIFs:

My favorites often end up being kisses!

Sometimes capturing the bridal party in a GIF can be priceless too!

Now that I’ve gotten the hang of it, I just love making GIFs and putting them alongside photos from fun days like these!

Photographer Tips: How to Create & Share GIFs

Couple embraces laughing at fall engagement session

Here are my best photographer tips and the steps that I take to create GIFs. You can adapt these as needed as you start to create your own GIFs!

IN CAMERA

  1. Choose a moment you want to capture.
  2. Make sure your camera is on the fastest continuous shooting mode.
  3. Hold camera as steady as possible and fire as many shots as you want to capture the moment (mine usually range between 18-25).

POST PROCESSING

  1. Import all files in sequence to Lightroom.
  2. On the first image in the sequence, edit to your liking and adjust any crop necessary.
  3. Select all photos wanted in the sequence, making sure the edited one is the first one you have selected.
  4. Click the “sync” button and make sure all the checks for the adjustments you made are selected.
  5. Once the photos are all edited to your liking, export them to a location.
  6. Find where you exported them to and airdrop the sequence of photos to your phone.
  7. Open the Momento app.

Note: I like to export these back into my hard drive where all the other ones would go, but put them in a separate folder titled “GIF 1, 2,” etc so they are still separated enough to find easily.

Couple embraces at windy fall engagement session

MOMENTO APP

The Momento GIF maker is worth the small investment because it will save you so much time and energy trying to make GIFs that look good! It’s also worth it if you don’t want to learn how to create GIFs in Photoshop. There are plenty of applications out there that can do the very same thing, so don’t feel limited to this one app. It’s just the one I have found that works best for me! I did pay for the premium subscription, but to me it’s worth it!

  1. Click “create new” in the app.
  2. Select all photos in the proper order that you want the GIF to be in and load them all into the app.
  3. Mainly the only things I adjust are the speed and the direction. I put the speed almost all the way to the right to make it almost as quick as a video, but slow enough for it to obviously be a GIF.
  4. I also usually change the direction to “loop” where it loops back to the beginning of the GIF instead of the bounce feature.
  5. Save as a video to your phone.
  6. Share your GIFs in your client galleries, post on Instagram, and GO CRAZY sharing it!!

Couple runs holding hands at windy fall engagement session
Couple embraces at fall engagement session

Once You Start, You Won’t Want to Stop

Couple kisses at night under the moon at outdoor wedding

I’ve found that the GIFs I’ve created from my shoots add so much life to the photos. It  helps people remember even better how a moment felt. You can seriously use the GIFs that you create anywhere! You can upload them to Pic-Time for your clients to download as a bonus to their gallery. Or you can use GIFs in an Instagram post or story. There are endless opportunities to put these GIFs to good use!

Want to talk about GIFs or anything else in building your photography business? Let’s talk!

Photographer Tips, The Invitation

CATEGORY

4/12/2022

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Photographer Tips: How to Create & Share GIFs

  1. Katie says:

    Thanks for sharing this kmac! These gifs truly capture moments the couples will cherish forever. 💗

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