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  • Writer's pictureAmy Burvall

Holiday Gifs: Bringing Magic to the Still Sketch


Just a quick tip with an appsmash (credit that word to @gregkulowiec).

I recently chanced upon a series of Christmas / Winter / Holiday -inspired sketches I did in 2015 for a series I called #novembrrrr. In fact, I even spliced them together at the end and made a quick film:

I ended up losing several when my phone crashed but managed to salvage the bulk of them via my Instagram

Lately I’ve been tinkering with a few apps, mixing them together to create new media. My favourite combo so far as been:

a sketch Paper 53

gif animation in ImgPlay

copyright-free music in Splice

other video effects in Instagram

***special shoutout goes to video effects in MegaPhoto

For the Christmas-themed sketches, I wondered

what would happen if I brought them to life in subtle ways?

To do this I imported the original sketch as an image into Paper 53, then duplicated it.

I worked on the duplicated version to add slight changes, exactly how you would go about making an old school stop motion film.

Through various duplications and added elements, I could then download a progressive series to my iPhone camera roll. The trick is to make sure you download in the proper order as you’ll need to import them into ImgPlay in that same order.


Upload images to ImgPlay and adjust the timing of the transition to taste (the app also has video effects but I tend not to use them).

Save to camera roll – I have tried several types but the one that works best for me is “Video, Low Quality”.


The app will ask you how many times you want to repeat it. This really depends on the speed of your gif transitions..I usually pick “3” but I know I can loop the video in Splice if I want.


Now upload to the Splice app by clicking on the “+” sign to add a new project (I’m terrible because I never name them).


It will take you to a page of music genres – simply click to

Peruse and Choose

I have used “Ambient” and “Cinematic” for my Ephemerments series but of course for these I chose “Holiday” and “Classic”.


You can add video effects here as well (though I usually refrain), but the most helpful aspect is that you can delete audio from the original clip (not needed for gifs but handy for other footage) and duplicate the clip as many times as needed. I like to test out the audio and repeat the clip so that it matches.



Finally, export the new

magical musical gif

I always always choose to save to camera roll rather than bouncing from app to app. That way, I can upload it to Instagram or Twitter as I like and even save to my YouTube.

Check out the entire Playlist of my Holiday gifs (more on their way) here:

#gifs #art #ios #creativity #appsmash #paper53 #animation #video #amyburvall #iphone #apps

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