I can’t remember how many years ago I first met Flixel’s CEO, Phillipe LeBlanc. I know we were at a trade show but I can’t recall which one. I know we had a few chats about the cinemagraph and while I had seen some examples of them before, I had never experienced any with the polish and elegance as the ones created with Flixel’s software. Since then, Flixel has experienced some big wins in terms of its partnerships and functionality, most recently—and notably—at this year’s Facebook F8 conference. And when you see stunning examples like the following, it’s easy to understand why Flixel is getting the recognition it deserves.

Flixel Photo Credit: Virgo Haan

I’ve always been enamored with cinemagraphs. I don’t know if anyone has ever said it before—and I know I have—but I believe that the cinemagraph is the Animated GIF of the 21st century. It finally allows the creative output to catch up with—and not be limited by—the modern digital cameras we use today. In other words, a cinemagraph is a living photo that takes advantage of all the resolution and horsepower that today’s cameras deliver.

What I don’t understand is what took me so long to dive headfirst into this Flixel world. It’s probably simply a matter of timing and circumstance. Video has very much been on the forefront of my mind lately and still imagery will always be my #1 passion, so why not meld the two together in a creative way? Over the weekend, I created three of my own cinemagraphs with Flixel’s Cinemagraph Pro software. The first two sourced video footage from my Sony a7R II and the third used my iPhone 6s Plus (recorded in 4k). I’m going to create a tutorial on how I use Flixel’s Cinemagraph Pro for after I return from NYC, but for now, I’d like to share these creations with you.

The very first cinemagraph I created is very, very subtle. Instead of beating the viewer over the head with the flowing water, I chose to introduce motion only on the frog itself. And it’s in this subtlety that I find myself falling in love both with this software and the output.

As soon as I uploaded my first cinemagraph to Flixel’s cloud service (built right into the app), I immediately turned my attention to attempt #2. This time, I wanted to be a bit more obvious with the motion I introduced. I found a clip of some sea turtles taken at Punalu’u Black Sands Beach on the Big Island of Hawaii. In the original video clip, the in-focus turtle was actually moving its head around quite a bit. But, I chose to isolate both of them and let the motion of the ocean come through.

My final cinemagraph from this past weekend was more me trying to have fun. I know the ol’ saying, “you are your own harshest critic,” so I figured I’d put that into motion… so to speak.

I will say that the creative possibilities that Flixel provides has me so jazzed, especially since I’ll be flying home to New York City tomorrow for some family time. Rest assured that there will be plenty more cinemagraphs to come!

Let me know what you think about Flixel and cinemagraphs in the comments below! And be sure to share any that you’ve created.