Ah The animated .gif – an internet love story. Did you know that on June 15th, 2012 – the GIF turned 25? Well, now I feel old. I hope you do too. lol. Some of you knew it was that old, others of you probably first discovered them when Google+ first came out and it supported them for everyone to easily share (finally!). How much do you know about our little animated friend? Well here is a quick look at the history.
History of Animated Gifs
According to the wiki – this is the GIF.
The Graphics Interchange Format (GIF; /ˈdʒɪf/ or /ˈɡɪf/) is a bitmap image format that was introduced by CompuServe in 1987 and has since come into widespread usage on the World Wide Web due to its wide support and portability. The format supports up to 8 bits per pixel thus allowing a single image to reference a palette of up to 256 distinct colors. The colors are chosen from the 24-bit RGB color space. It also supports animations and allows a separate palette of 256 colors for each frame. The color limitation makes the GIF format unsuitable for reproducing color photographs and other images with continuous color, but it is well-suited for simpler images such as graphics or logos with solid areas of color.
GIF images are compressed using the Lempel-Ziv-Welch (LZW) lossless data compression technique to reduce the file size without degrading the visual quality. This compression technique was patented in 1985. Controversy over the licensing agreement between the patent holder, Unisys, and CompuServe in 1994 spurred the development of the Portable Network Graphics (PNG) standard; since then all the relevant patents have expired.
That little image format has had a fascinating upbringing! I remember when it was all over the internet, on geocities sites and the like – they were all the rage. Everyones website from beginner to experts seemed to be using it (badly) back in the 90’s. Schools that taught Web Design back then actually taught you how to use those things as “good web standards” then lol. My how far we have come. The GIF however, still reigns supreme in different aspects of the art and design world online! LUCKILY there have been a lot of innovative uses of GIFS lately that are not nearly as gaudy and terrible as the 90’s attempts. New art forms have emerged that make GIFs actually trendy and awesome (and hilarious, but we don’t really mention those today) in some circles – we are going to explore some of the better examples of modern GIF art.
Some of these are custom created artworks, Illustrations, Photography (or Cinemagraph), and Animations – Others as you may have guessed are cleverly clipped from film & TV, I only put some of them in here though because they are awesome, so only the best (that I could find and fit in here for you guys)! I tried to avoid any of the headache educing gifs, even though they are pretty creative and artsy sometimes, doesn’t really fit with all of these.
Note: Animated gifs range from small to large, so this page could take a while (depending on your internet speed) to fully load!! BUT It will totally be worth it. Im worth it baby. haha – oh and Patience is a virtue :).
I HOPE these inspire your creative brain parts – ENJOY!
What was your favorite GIF? When did you first use a gif or hear about one? Got any awesome GIFS? Leave them in the comments below! Thanks for reading!