Free Animated GIF Maker
By Stephen Bucaro
It is incredibly easy to turn a set of GIF images into an animation using WhitSoft
Development’s UnFREEz freeware program. First use a graphics program, such as Windows
Paint to create a set of images for your animations frames.
Your frames must already be saved in GIF format (UnFREEz does no converting), and they
should be the same dimensions. For this example, I used the three images displayed
below. They are all 196 pixels wide by 152 pixels high.
Next determine the sequence to display the frames. For this example, the sequence will
be A - B - A- C. Note that image A will be used twice and since the image will be set to
loop, after image C is displayed, it will loop back to image A.
Then open the UnFREEz program and drag and drop GIF files from Windows Explorer to the
UnFREEz window. If you are dragging multiple files at a time, holding onto the topmost
selected file in Windows Explorer while dragging should preserve the order of the frames.
For some reason, holding onto one of the other frames you have selected while dragging
messes up the order of the files when they are dropped onto UnFREEz.
Next set the delay time to use between frames. This time is in "centiseconds", or
1/100th of seconds, so 100 centiseconds equals 1 second. Also, you have the option to
make the animation loop or just play once through. For this example, I set the delay
to 24 centiseconds and set it to loop.
Once you have everything set, click Make Animated GIF. A save file dialog box will
appear, where you can name your animated GIF. Once saved, the resulting animated GIF
file should work in any modern web browser. The animation below was created by UnFREEz
using the frames shown above.
UnFREEz is incredibly easy to use. It doesn't have all the features of a bloated piece
of software like GIF Construction Set or Microsoft’s GIF Animator. It is an incredibly
tiny program, only 28 KB decompressed. And best of all, it is freeware, which means
you may use it forever without paying a cent or feeling the slightest bit guilty.
If you want to experiment, the easiest way to make a set of animation frames to use a
graphics program to create some text. Then for each frame you can move the text a bit
within the frame or change it's color or size. This would be a great program for
creating animated banners, just make your animation frames 468 pixels wide by 60
pixels high (standard banner size).
Distribution Policy: Unless clearly stated otherwise, all WhitSoft programs are
freeware, and as such are freely distributable. The one condition is that the program
file itself must not be modified from its original form; however, it may be packaged
or bundled with other software. If you are distributing a WhitSoft program, I'd
appreciate a short email and a copy of the distributed package if possible. 19.5 KB
download unfreez.zip from WhitSoft Development.
More Graphics Design Tips:
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• Tips and Tricks for Getting Free Images
• SVG Basic Shapes Tutorials
• Introduction to X3D (Extensible 3D)
• Graphic Design Meets Open Source
• The Blender Gamekit
• SVG Code for Outlined Letters Text
• Inkscape Layers and Z-Order
• SVG Example Code to Rotate Elements
• How to Make a Simple Animated Banner in Flash CS3