nikki miles



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Hi I'm Nikki :) this is my blog where I write about my illustration work and creative life. Read more about me

A quick guide to frame animation on Photoshop

Recently I have really wanted to start sharing animated GIF illustrations on my Instagram grid but the platform only accepts MP4 for video files. After receiving lots of useful advice from The Rollercoaster of Running an Indie Business Facebook community, I found out I can use the same process I'm already using with Photoshop, but instead of saving my animation as a GIF I can render it as a MP4 video. I have been using Photoshop for over 10 years and never knew you could create video files on there so I was happily surprised! Here is a simple animation I made and uploaded it to my Instagram 😍


I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who helped me in the Indie Rollercoaster group. If you don't already know about The Rollercoaster, it is an uplifting, open & honest space set up by Leona who owns Lucky Dip Club. The group is where we can discuss business obstacles, share useful information and encourage our fellow indie biz owners. Community over competition. Always.

Lots of people in the group were interested in making their own animations, so as promised I have written a quick guide below. It will help if you're already familiar with stop motion because the frame animation in Photoshop works on the same basis. Hope this helps and don't forget you can always find a useful tutorial on YouTube, there are loads out there.

1. Open your images in Photoshop as separate layers.

2. Put the layers in the order you want them to display in your animation.

3. On the top toolbar go to Window and open up Timeline

4. Click the menu icon on the top right of the Timeline window and select "Make Frames from Layers"

5. Under each frame select how many seconds you want the frame to appear before going on to the next one.

6. Select how many times your video will play, I normally click on "Forever".

7. Press the play icon to preview your animation.

8. To save as a GIF go to File > Export > Save for Web (Legacy) then choose GIF and animation options before saving.

9. To save a MP4 video click the menu icon on the top right of the Timeline window and select "Convert to Video Timeline". 

10. Then go back to the same menu icon and click on "Render Video", here you can choose different preset options and export your video as a MP4 file.