3 Techniques for Creating Amazing Cinemagraphs

Cinemagraphs can be a great and unique medium for showing your work, but they are tricky to get right, particularly if you want a seamless loop. In this tutorial, learn three different techniques for creating the best looking cinemagraphs you can.

I remember when I first saw a cinemagraph. It was a website where an artist had created a number of them from some videography he or she had done and they were beautiful. They are essentially very high quality GIFs, but given the usually dreadful quality of GIFs, they felt like putting prescription glasses on for the first time.

Then, after a brief swell of interest in them, they seemed to fall from grace and were rarely seen. I went from seeing them everywhere and every photographer trying to learn how to do them, to not seeing them at all; they had been a flash in the pan. Then, with Instagram Stories and a few other media presentation formats, they rose up again and I am now seeing them pretty regularly.

If you want to create your own, how you do it will depend largely on what is in the shot. If there are elements you want to move and elements you want to be still, you'll need to do some masking. However, the trickiest element is navigating the feature of cinemagraphs that is almost an unspoken rule: the perfect loop.

In this video, Unmesh Dinda of PiXimperfect offers three different techniques (which can be combined) for creating great-looking cinemagraphs with perfect loops.

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