Microsoft Research Releases Cliplets Software for Cinemagraphs Made Easy [Video]

By Wesley Fenlon

The Cliplets app provides a user-friendly interface for blending video and still imagery.

Animated GIFs developed a classy offshoot in the form of cinemagraphs last year. Instead of looping or repeating a short animation or video like normal GIFs, cinemagraphs isolate a particular part of an image while leaving the rest static like a photograph. Cinemagraphs take some Photoshop editing to pull off, which makes Microsoft's new Cliplets software a cool point of entry for amateur photographers.

The software allows for easy creation of animated images Microsoft calls Cliplets, which are essentially cinemagraphs more rooted in the language of video than GIF.

The Cliplets software provides a selection tool that can be used to isolate a section of the video for animation. Everything else will be presented as a still image, removing camera shake or distracting background noise.

That sounds exactly like a cinemagraph, right? They're really similar--the difference is, cinemagraphs are typically designed to loop seamlessly, while Cliplets may be more linear. But Microsoft's Cliplets software is free, and fully capable of turning video clips into looping cinemagraphs, assuming you can handle a lasso tool.

Microsoft has also put up a tutorial page showing you how to use this program.