GIF Animator could not have a more descriptive name: this tool can help you create and edit animations. It can import various picture formats, including GIF, JPG, BMP, ICO, WMF, EMF and PNG. Likewise, it can produce animations as SWF (Flash) and animated GIFs, which are generally used in webpages due to their very light weight. However, still images can only be exported in BMP format. Unfortunately, the program’s interface looks outdated and some of the procedures are unnecessarily complicated.
The program works by creating a series of frames, which you can edit separately. For this purpose, there are some drawing tools available, such as pen, brush, fill, spray, ellipse, rectangle, polygon, line, curve, and text. Moreover, frames can be rotated, flipped, duplicated, merged and cropped, which saves a lot of work. It is shame, though, that there is no possibility of using an onion skin tool, which would significantly help in the animation process. Luckily, you can adjust some of the parameters of the animated sequences, such as duration and loop count.
The program allows simpler ways to compose an animation. For instance, you can add frames from picture files. Likewise, you can create a slideshow by importing several images and setting transitions between them. In this respect, I must alert you that the pictures may look severely distorted. Finally, you can create an animated text banner just by entering the text and setting font type.
In a nutshell, GIF Animator has the main advantage of creating highly compressed animations for your webpages. However, the program did not meet my expectations. The built-in effects, for example, which would probably have been alright fifteen years ago, are no match for those available from other similar tools. Although the program is free to try, it leaves an annoying stamp on the animation.
- Imports various pictures formats
- Creates text animations and photo slideshows
- Exports to Flash
- Creates highly compressed animations
- Distorts pictures
- Unappealing effects and transitions
- Outdated interface
- Exports still images as BMP files only