Where to acquire the files and programs:
GIMP 2.0 for Windows and other required components can be found here
The main GIMP website can be found here
Required program installation:
You will need to install at the least, the gtk+-2.2.4 setup and then the GIMP 2.0 setup in order to continue with the animation step process that will described in this guide.
Note: In my experience, it is best not to install the GTK-Wimp component that is included with the gtk+-2.2.4 setup, as I have ran into many font loading errors in using GIMP under Windows XP.
Working under GIMP for Windows Part 1
Assuming that you have already gathered your image source materials, JPG preferable, we will begin with the layering process, also assuming that you have already completed the image editing and resizing.
1) While still under JPG format, open what is to be your first image frame in the GIMP. This would be easiest done by draging the image file to the GIMP main window tools area. Be sure to leave this window open for the rest of this process.
2) On the Layers window, (File/Dialogs/Layers, in the GIMP main window if not shown.) create a new transparent layer or empty layer. This can be done by clicking on the New Layer icon located within the Layers window (Usually located at the bottom left), or you can right-click on Background located within the Layers window and than select New Layer.
3) Now open what is to be the next frame in your animated sequence in the GIMP.
4) On the window that you have just opened, copy the entire image into GIMP. This is done by right-clicking on the image and selecting Edit/Copy.
5) Now paste what you have just copied into your first frame window. This is done by right-clicking on the image and selecting Edit/Paste.
6) Now anchor the layer in the Layers window. This can be done by right-clicking on Pasted Layer within the Layers window and selecting Anchor Layer, or you can anchor by selecting the icon that look like a ship anchor.
7) Close the second image file window that you had opened previously to conserve system memory and to help avoid errors and confusion.
8) Repeat steps 2 through 7 for every other frame that you wish to add to the animation sequence.
Setting Frame Delays
Within the Layers window, you should see something such as the following:
To indicate individual frame delays, specify each layer with a (###ms), where # equals an actual number.
This can be done by right-clicking on the layer name, and then selecting Edit Layer Attributes, which a window will appear to allow you to add the (###ms).
For layers seen above that do not specify a (###ms), they will be configured to the master frame delay time that will be found in a later step in this guide.
Working under GIMP for Windows Part 2
1) Now we need to switch everything to Indexed mode. This is done by right-clicking on the image and selecting Image/Mode/Indexed. The Index Color Conversion window should now appear. Select Generate Optimum Platelet @ 255 colors, and next select No Color Dithering, then select OK.
2a) You can now save the image by right-clicking on the image, then selecting File/Save As. You should now see a Save Image window. Here you should choose a known directory to save your image file. Then within the same window, rename the file to something different, such as ****.gif
, where * equals something different but always include .gif for your animated GIF sequence. Now select OK.
2b) The export file wizard should now appear. Select Save as Animation, then select Export. You should now see the Save As GIF window. Here you can add a comment and other various tweaks, but do not select Interlace. You will need to tweak the master delay time (ms) in this window for layered frames that are not specified by (ms) delay timing (See process Setting Frame Delays
about unspecified frame delays). Now select OK to complete this process.
Repeat the Setting Frame Delays
process and then Part 2 / 2a through 2b to tweak individual frame delays if necessary.
Repeat the above process Part 2 / 2a through 2b to tweak the master frame delay time.