Animated Gifs in Procreate | Liz K Walker | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Intro Animated Gifs in Procreate


    • 2.

      Gifs and Procreate


    • 3.

      Big Reveal


    • 4.

      Let's Move It


    • 5.

      Follow Your Path


    • 6.

      All in the Eyes


    • 7.



    • 8.

      *Bonus Inspiration & Mood board thoughts


    • 9.

      Class Project


    • 10.

      **Update** Animation Assist Toolbar


    • 11.

      Thank You


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About This Class

In this class, we will explore a few simple steps that bring motion and meaning to your illustrations.

Gifs are a great way to add extra interest & excitement to your illustrations. We will dig into animation styles you can add to your illustrations.

For the class project, you will create an animated gif using the techniques from the exercise videos to add animation to an illustration.

* Practice files are in the resources to follow along with the demos!

To do this, we will spend time:

  • Reviewing step-by-step how to add motion to illustrations using Procreate
  • Demonstrating how to complete the class project
  • Review Exporting

This class is suitable for all levels.

Knowledge of the Procreate app on an iPad is required.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Liz K Walker

Graphic Designer & Illustrator



Hi! I am Liz Walker, a graphic designer with seventeen years of experience making custom graphics. I work with print, web, video and animation graphics.

I have a passion for art, illustration, and learning. I am always pushing myself to experiment with new ideas, processes or new software.

When I am not working I am dreaming up new illustrations and experimenting with both digital and traditional mediums.

I hope you will join me in my current class and future classes as I continue to explore art & mediums.

You can also see what I am currently experimenting with on IG: @lizillas.


P.S. I promise I love Vincent Van Gogh. He was not harmed in any way for the production of this image.

 See full profile

Level: All Levels

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1. Intro Animated Gifs in Procreate: Hello, I'm Liz Walker, a graphic designer and illustrator. Thank you for joining my first Skillshare class, animated GIFs in Procreate. I always thought of GIFs as a way to send funny messages to my mom and sisters. Like the monkey throwing the laptop when I don't feel like working or the Napoleon Dance or Alice bowing to say thank you. Just something funny to add to your day. However, with the addition to share your projects as GIFs straight from Procreate, it really made me stop and think for a minute, how can I add extra interest to my illustrations? In this class, we'll explore a few simple steps to bring motion to your illustrations using Procreate in GIFs. Some items we will cover in this class are basic information about GIFs, Procreate settings, exercises digging into animation styles that you can use for your illustrations. Please feel free to stop and follow along with me during the exercises. As I find this a great way to build your skills. Review export and upload settings. I will be sharing my workflow tips and tricks. We will also cover finding inspiration and the importance of mood boards. For the class project, we will create an animated GIF using the techniques from the exercise videos to add animation to an illustration. Let's get started. 2. Gifs and Procreate: Can you believe that gifs have been around since 1987? Here's some basics about gifs. Gif stands for graphic interchange format. Gifs use lossless compression keeping the quality of the image higher than JPEGs. In Procreate, each layer or group will be a single frame reading from the bottom to the top and must be visible for it to appear. The more frames you have in your layer panel, the smoother the animation will be. Here's how I set up my gif files. I have a folder that's named build or 00, and in this folder I keep all of the elements that I may need, in case I mess up or delete something and it just can be fixed easily. I can pull an asset right out of this folder, and it's fixed. Then I have my Frame 1, which is the frame that we're going to begin with and my Final Frame, which is the final outcome. This way you always know where you're going to begin and where you're going to end. To preview, select "Actions", select "Share", then select "Animated GIF", and you will see a preview of what you are going to export. In this preview mode, you can view the frames per second and you can increase them or decrease them. You can toggle off or on, your transparent backgrounds. You can choose a Web Ready format or a Full Resolution format. I export mine at full resolution because the Web Ready really compresses it, and has made it pixelated. 3. Big Reveal: I have my up arrow here. I'm going to select it and add a Layer Mask, then I'm going to feel the layer mask with black, and then select white in your brush, add a guide layer so we can see what we're doing below and take the opacity down. Then in the Layer Mask, we are just going to paint the white on so we can reveal our arrow. We just continue to duplicate the layer and layer mask. You're in the image gif of a white bond of this arrow. It's very simple, but it gets the point across. Now, let's take a look at how we could do this with the word gifts and flowers. We have our first frame, and inside that frame, I'm going to duplicate the flower layer and fill that with black and that is going to be my guide layer. I'm going to take the opacity on that, and it's always going to be visible while we create this. I add a layer mask, fill that with black, and then I just paint in my flowers. As we go, we just want to make sure that we are renaming our folders so that we're organized. I really like to try to keep my files organized. I sometimes call myself organized chaos because it's what my files look like. We're just going to keep painting until we've revealed all the flowers, and I want this to look very painterly, like the flowers are just growing out of this word. We don't need this guide layer. We're going to delete it. I like to add frame sometimes at the beginning or at the end, just as like a pause in the exact same frames. But it makes it so maybe you can read something or it sits on the illustration before it loops back. Our next example, we're going to be erasing away the circle. You just keep duplicating the frame, and then keep erasing away one by one. Now, let's turn on all our frames and we're going to review it. For this reveal, we are going to be revealing the word ice cream. I have this setup. I have Frame 0 as just a blank layer. This is like the background layer, there's nothing on it. This will be the first frame that we see. In the next layer, we're going to duplicate the background layer frame 0, and we're going to throw that over top of the ice cream layer. You can see it and I can't, and then what we're going to do is we're going to erase away the word ice cream for our big reveal. I'm going to use one of these purchased brush pens that they have in here, and just start painting away. You can go anywhere with this. I have those two spots, then I'm going to duplicate that whole frame. I'm going to name this one Frame 2, and I'm going to continue working. I chose this brush pen because I wanted to show some of the texture. I'm going to speed this up for you guys so you don't have to sit and watch, and wait. Now, we have it reveal. Let's take a look at what it's going to look like. There it goes. Hello, ice cream. It's your turn. Now's a great time to stop and practice this animation style with some of your work or just do a simple example. It's really good to just take a few minutes and explore. 4. Let's Move It: For the movement, GIF, we are going to be using the liquify tools to animate this mermaid's hair. To select the liquefied tool, go to Adjustments, Liquify. I'm going to use the push tool to push around her hair. I want this to look like it's floating under water. Now we can add movement to the sea plants. I want these plants to appear to be swaying back and forth in the water. To achieve this, I'm going to use the warp tool. You can pull each point on the grid to move the object around. I've kept each plant separate so I can warp them individually. I'm going to adjust the particles and make them look like they're shifting around underwater to add just a little bit extra magic. Also, I'm going to add more particles after I rotate to fill in the spaces that didn't have particles before. I love adding extra texture to my illustrations. Once I've adjusted all the plants a duplicate the layer or frame group, and start over liquifying the hair, warping all the plants, and I continue on like this. It's best to keep working forward here because you're adding to the previous frame. So each small movement adds to the next frame. Now's a great time to stop and review our GIF and see what we're working with, and also if you need to go back and readjust something because you don't really like the way it looks, that's not a problem. If you need to pull out something that you've worked in a way that is little too much like I've done here. You can just pull it from your build file and fix it. It's your turn. Now's a great time to stop and practice this animation style with some of your work. Or just do a simple example, it's really good to just take a few minutes and explore. 5. Follow Your Path: Following a path or guide layer. For this path, I'm going to choose just a layer that's really obvious, and draw my path on here that I want this butterfly to fly along. Now the background layer and this file is all flattened because I'm not going to animate anything on there. Then I have the butterflies layer. What I'm going to do with the butterflies layer is I'm going to remove one of the butterflies using the selection tool, doing the three finger tap, drag down to bring up the cut copy paste menu. I'm going to cut and paste it into a new layer. When this butterfly flies along this path, it looks weird because butterflies don't fly with their wings wide-open. We'll duplicate the butterfly layer, we'll keep one, we are going to just erase half the butterfly and then duplicate that again and rotate it to give it some dimension, combine that together, and then we will start duplicating and moving this butterfly along the path. Remember the more butterflies and frames you have, the smoother your animation will be. Then when I get to this curve, I'm just going to flip it horizontally, flip it and rotate it. Now he's flying upright and straight into the flowers. To review this, I'm going to turn off the guide layer and the background layer because it will add a flash. I just want to see where we're at right now before I continue to move forward. You can see when we review it, it looks good. Flipping of the butterfly doesn't look strange or anything. We're going to continue forward. The next step is combining the background layer and the butterfly. For each butterfly it has to have its own background layer. You can do two things. You could flatten them together or put them in frame groups. I like to put them in groups until I know I'm done with something and I feel like I'm not going to change this. I name all these folders along the way to make sure everything's labeled and organized. Once we get to the end, we're going to review it. It looks pretty good. It's your turn. Now's a great time to stop and practice this animation style with some of your work. Or just do a simple example, it's really good to just take a few minutes and explore. 6. All in the Eyes: Let's look at an example of a sketch that I did of my mom and sisters, and how you can easily add some animation to this just to add just a little extra or add some interest to this. We are going to open and close their eyes. I have separated all of the sisters' eyes out, created closed and open versions for everyone, except for my one sister, sister C. I'm going to use the selection tool and draw around her eyes. Then I'm going to a three finger tap so this menu comes up, and I'm going to cut and paste and what that does is it makes it in its own separate layers. So we can turn this layer on and we can turn this layer off. Then I'm going to duplicate some closed eyes from my sister A, move them over to sister C, then adjust them on her face. See now, then I'm going to turn those off, because I don't want them right now. We're going to duplicate, make a new frame. Then I'm going to go through and I'm just going to just adjust the eyes, turn them off and on. I'm going to continue doing this, just opening and closing. You can use the selection tool and flip them horizontally, so they're looking in a different direction and adjust it a little bit. Let's take a look at what this will look like once it's exported. There they are, they're looking at each other. It just adds a little bit extra fun and interest to this illustration. Let's look at my blue hair girl as an example in the short Jeff. Every time she blinks, she blushes and her hair is blowing in the wind and little hearts populate. Just keep it simple and add a couple of things to your illustrations and just adds a little extra fun. It's your turn. Now is a great time to stop and practice this animation style with some of your work, or just do a simple example. It's really good just to take a few minutes and explore. 7. Export: All right, so now we're ready to export this out. Let's go to our animated GIF, we're going to export out a full resolution and I'm going to put this in my shared albums. When we're exporting this out, you can't export it directly from Procreate and then go into Instagram or Facebook. You need to go through another app, and you can go through Giphy. I have an account set up for myself. What you do is you add, you select it, and here is in here. It's this last one, you select "Choose Photo" or "Use". There it is, then you select upload. It takes a minute while processes. You want to make sure that your GIF is at least three seconds long. There's no editing you can add in Giphy, then you select this. You select "Send", and then you can select where you would like to send it to. It doesn't posted right into your account. Now another method would be to take it into another app. There are many apps. For this one I'm going to use GifVid. "Gif to Video" is what I selected. I'm going to select the highest resolution here, and this you can control the speed of your playback, or you can also add desired video loops so you make sure you have three seconds at least. You can select from the menu where you would like to upload it, and it should connect right to your account. 8. *Bonus Inspiration & Mood board thoughts: Have you ever thought, "Okay, I'm ready. I'm going to draw this right now," and you open your sketchbook or your iPad or get out your canvas, and then think, I don't know what to make. My brain is blank. What am I going to do? You are not alone. We all struggle with this. Some things I like to do when I'm feeling this way are go back and look at some of my old work, and maybe I can take one of those pieces and revamp it and make it a little more interesting or new twist on it. I also try to draw every day. I know that it's a hard thing to draw every day but sometimes it's just about showing up. Some days you may have more time than other days. I recently was doing a drawing challenge with my sister and one day she messaged me and said, "I just don't think I can do this today." Our prompt was mermaid. I sent her a message back that said, "Just draw a stick mermaid. Then you showed up." To this day whenever I feel uninspired, I just think stick mermaid. Some days you just got to show up. Also, you can try warming up with a practice of just sketching, turn on some music, sit outside and just start sketching with no purpose, and then it will lead you to more of a purpose. Another thing I like to do is I like to collect inspiration boards or also mood boards. A great place to do this as on Pinterest. You can categorize your boards. You can do, if say you want pinks and greens or want yellows and reds, and review those boards and look and be inspired by them. Think about how you can use those colors or if you have something specific in mind, it's really great to have a mood board and build that. So you can see what you were inspired from. 9. Class Project: Now it's your turn to practice what we've learned today by completing your own class project. Remember to find some inspiration. Maybe create a new board, and then take your unique illustration, and think about ways you can add some animation to that. Maybe it's a big reveal. Maybe you're just adding a little bit of movement. You have something flying, you have a little path, that leads us to your illustration. When you're done, don't forget to upload your project to the project gallery and share it with everyone so we can be inspired by you. I can't wait to see what you create. 10. **Update** Animation Assist Toolbar: Hey, there. I have an update to my course reviewing the new feature, Animate Assist, and how it can help you with your workflow. To turn on your Animate Assist, you select the tools from this menu up here, a little wrench. Animate Assist is right here, and you just turn this toggle on. Then at the bottom of the screen pops up a menu and this is where we're going to do all of our animating work. I'm going to show you what my layers look like. In my layer panel, I have this top layer that's my signature, my frame one, build layers just in case I need them, and the background layer. In this menu down here, the Animate Assist menu, if you select the first frame, which was our bottom layer, my background layer, you can select the toggle and make that your background layer. This means that the background will show through the entire animation and you have no need to duplicate it, wasting your face with adding the same layer over and over again. We move to this last layer, which is my signature layer, which was the top layer in the layer panel and you can select that and make that your foreground so that's always remaining on top. If there's an animation you want to be continually happening over top, you could have that happening. I'm going to show you how I add just simple animation using this menu and how easy it is. We'll go over all of the options doing this. First, we're going to duplicate this layer. What that did in your layer panel, you'll see it duplicated the entire folder which is so cool. Then I'm going to add my brush tool and I have these watercolor hearts. What I'm just going to do is to add just a couple, let me make those bigger. What I'm going to do is to add just a couple little heart. I get the size, right? Couple little hearts coming up from this. Then down here, we will duplicate it again and I'm going to do the same thing. I am just going to add some more hearts. Look at that. That's more hearts. What's really nice about this menu is that you don't have to go like you used to. You had to go to this and then you had to there and then he had to preview it. You no longer have to do that. You can preview it right here. Just really nice. While that moves really fast, how we're going to fix that is you can change the whole duration as many frames. These frames will hold, this will just hold the same exact frame longer. I'm going to do that for each of these and then we can look at this. In the settings menu, you can change your frames per second there, which you used to change in the other menu. The onion skin frames shows it's like a transparency to show you your animations beforehand. You can see as you're animating what that looks like. Your video will play. One-shot, pretty self-explanatory, it plays just straight through it to the end. Looping, it goes back to the beginning. Lip arm just keeps going back and forth between the beginning and the end, just bouncing, which can add it really nicely. It makes it really easy to add a frame. If you click "Add a frame", its different than duplicating a frame. You select the actual frame to duplicate and you can select these frames that you accidentally made, I don't know why I did that, and you just delete them. If you wanted to add a blank frame in the middle to draw over top, and you can see where your actual frames are down here because the ones that have a whole duration are grayed out. You can then go to your menu and you can go to share and select "Animated GIF", MP4. This is our export menu where it shows you way bigger preview than it did before. I always select "Max resolution" when exporting and you [inaudible] I have a background, but if you wanted to do that, you could do that. Then you select "Export" and you're good to go. Thank you guys so much for watching and I look forward to you guys taking this and feel free to tag me in anything you make. Ask any questions. Thanks. 11. Thank You: Thank you so much for joining my first Skillshare class: animated GIF in Procreate. Remember to post your class project in the Project Gallery. It would mean so much to me if you would review my class, give it a like, and follow my Skillshare profile, so you are notified when I publish future classes. Thanks, again.