About Cinemagraphs

To me, Cinemagraphs are a great form of art because they remind me of stopping time to enjoy the moment. It is something valuable to do living in this fast-paced world. There are many great inspirational cinemagraphs on the internet, and they have become more and more popular. The following is a series of my venture into cinemagraphs.


A Cinemagraph gif taken at the Falmouth Harbor on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The Image shows a woman in front of the water. This is made using a dissolve loop.

In this particular cinemagraph, we traveled to Cape Cod, Massachusetts to the Falmouth Harbor. We took a video of her in front of the water at different angles. We made sure she was as still as possible and that there was no movement behind the elements we wanted to be moving. If there is movement in the background of what you want to be moving, then it is extremely difficult to pull it off. I made sure the camera was on a tripod and not moving at all.


After Effects

Adobe After Effects dissolve loop for a cinemagraph.

I then went through the footage to find the spot I want and brought it straight into After Effects and sized it down. There is one technique I discovered to make many types of movements seamless called a “dissolve loop.” You basically cut the footage you want to loop in half and swap the front half with the back half. Now that they are swapped, the beginning of the video is seamless with the end of the video. All I did from there is add a dissolve to the middle of the video. This technique does not work with everything, but very effective with water.


Cinemagraph screen shot in Adobe Photoshop. The first step of how to make cinemagraphs.

Once I had it in Photoshop, I was able to make a still image of the video and drag it to the top layer. After that, I masked out elements I wanted to be moving. I wanted to have only her hair, eyes, and clothing moving while everything else is still. I also added some adjustment layers and stylized it to my liking. Lastly, I exported as a gif that loops forever and that’s it! Overall, I had a blast with this.

Share This