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Submitted on
March 15, 2013
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PE: How to Animate in Gimp

Fri Mar 15, 2013, 10:07 PM

How to Animate in Gimp

Gimp is a free photo editing software that you can download at You can use it for a lot of different things like photo manipulations, drawing, pixel art, etc. Today though, we will be covering the topic of animation!:la:

Note that this tutorial will only show the basics of Gimp animation. How to make the frames, how to save it and the such.:nod: So let's get started!:la:

Untitled Drawing by IceXDragon

Start by making the subject. I just used a random black ball, but the subject can be as simple or as complex as you want, depending on what you're making. Make sure you switch over to the layers tab.

Tip: If you do not already have the layers tab there by default, go to any of the tabs and press that little arrow that the green arrow is pointing at. After you click tab press: Add tab> Layers. After that, the layer tab like in the picture should show up.

Gimp Ani 2 by IceXDragon

After making the subject, right click the layer (the one highlighted in blue) and click on "Duplicate layer".

Gimp Ani 3 by IceXDragon

After doing that, click the move tool and move the layer where you want it. Then, right click the layer on top (the one you just made), click duplicate layer, and move again.

Gimp Ani 4 by IceXDragon

Keep doing this until you are satisfied with your project. In the last layer I squished the ball a little just to give the effect that it's boingy and bouncy.:giggle:

Gimp Ani 5 by IceXDragon

Save it. Press File> Save As.

Tip: If you are using Gimp 2.8 or newer, press "Export" instead of save as.

Gimp Ani 6 by IceXDragon

When naming it, by default, it should say the name of your animation, and have .xcf at the end. Change .xcf to .gif.:D

Then check "Save as Animation" and press export. It is important that you pay attention to the step, because it defaults to "Merge Visible layers", and if you save it like that it will, well merge the layers.:lol: Meaning you will have no animation.

Gimp Ani 7 by IceXDragon

If you have a transparent background on your animation (like mine), be sure to press "One frame per layer (replace)" otherwise your animation will trail. You can also change the speed of the animation if you want by changing the number up there.:nod:

Gimp Ani 8 by IceXDragon

Check your animation. Press Filters> Animation> Playback.

Gimp Ani 9 by IceXDragon

If you see something you don't like, simply find the problem layer, and fix it. If you like how it is, you are done!:la:

Bounce by IceXDragon

Now what if you are trying to make a picture slide show? Learn how below!:la:

Gimp Ani 10 by IceXDragon

Open up the first picture like you would do any other file. After that press File>Open as Layers... Then choose the next picture you want to show up. Keep importing pictures this way until you think you have enough for your slide show.:meow:

Gimp Ani 11 by IceXDragon
Follow the same saving steps as described in the earlier steps. Check it, save it, and you are done!:dummy:

I Hope you found this tutorial helpful! Any questions please ask below.:)

Happy animating!:eager:

Learn how to animate in Gimp!:la:
Add a Comment:
Viljonkka Mar 25, 2014  New member Hobbyist Digital Artist
IceXDragon Mar 26, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
No problem! I hope you have fun animating.:meow:
Sueweetie Feb 9, 2014  New member Hobbyist Digital Artist
i need help :( i played it in playback and it played perfectly fine. but after i saved it on my desktop. i clicked it and it played differently !! i tried fixing the layers and nothing helps
IceXDragon Feb 9, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Did you save it as a gif when you save it to your desktop, or did you keep it as a xcf?
Sueweetie Feb 9, 2014  New member Hobbyist Digital Artist
I saved as gif. Please help me :(
IceXDragon Feb 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Okay, can you please send me the gif file, and the xcf file if you still have it, and tell me what you intended it to look like?
Sueweetie Feb 10, 2014  New member Hobbyist Digital Artist
thank you so much but it worked again this morning when i re-saved it for some reason. :oo but thank you so much !! its so weird :I but thank you so much !
IceXDragon Feb 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
That's great! I guess something weird happened when it saved? I don't know.XD Well I'm glad it's working for you now, and I wish you well for your project!:happybounce:

No problem.:huggle:
xXSeas-of-EmeraldXx Feb 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Awesome tutorial! :) I have a question though, I followed the directions, saved it as a .gif but how do I actually see it as an animation once it's saved and everything?
IceXDragon Feb 6, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm glad you found it useful!:la:

All you have to do is, in the tool bar, press filters>animation>playback, and a window should pop up with the animation. You can do this anytime during the animation process.;)
Add a Comment: