How To Create Before and After Animated GIFs for Your Images in Photoshop

Where once editing was a sly activity most people wanted to hide, creating the illusion that the images came straight from the camera, now it's a generally accepted part of the process (even if it always has been part of the process!) A great way to engage with your followers and show just what can be done with a photo is to show before and after images, so you may as well do it properly.

When I started photography, before and after versions of images were not all that common to see. Many did not want to share what they had done, or were shy over just how much they had edited an image, or how dull the straight-out-of-the-camera file was. When I was a beginner, from time to time I would ask photographers I looked up to if I could see the before version of their final image. Some seemed a little insulted, but some showed me it, and I learned more from those before images than I ever could from an after.

The reason for this is simple: I was trying to decipher why my images were so much worse than professional photographers' works. Was it that my lens or body were not good enough? Was it that my composition was poor? Was it the settings I used? Of course, sometimes it was all of the above, but what learned from seeing before and after images is that often, great images aren't great straight from your camera. What can be achieved in post production is more impressive than ever before, and so it's useful to see just how transformative it can be.

In this video by the Photoshop Training Channel, we look at how you create an animated GIF image that swipes from the before to the after, that is, from the unedited to the final file.

Robert K Baggs's picture

Robert K Baggs is a professional portrait and commercial photographer, educator, and consultant from England. Robert has a First-Class degree in Philosophy and a Master's by Research. In 2015 Robert's work on plagiarism in photography was published as part of several universities' photography degree syllabuses.

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