I have a huge obsession with cinemagraphs and have written about the creative opportunities that they can provide. The more we strive to create and share our work with the world, the more important it is to clearly understand that the most precious commodity we’re trading and vying for is another person’s attention. Think about it. Think about your social media consumption habits. You load up a channel, say Facebook, and you engage in this almost-automated process of scrolling, scrolling, clicking, scrolling, clicking, etc. It’s only when a piece of visual content jostles you from this rinse-and-repeat motion that your attention currency begins being spent. As far as my own browsing habits, I know that one of the most surefire ways to capture my attention is to see a really beautiful cinemagraph. That’s why I am creating this new series on my blog where I’ll share notable cinemagraphs created by me, but mostly by other amazing talents. I’m a huge fan of this media format and am hugely supportive of the work that the great folks at Flixel have been doing to bring cinemagraphs to the masses.

For now, I’d like to kick off this series with one of my own cinemagraphs mostly because I find the process of creating this one in particular to be interesting. Normally, I create my cinemagraphs using full motion videos that I record, mostly with my Sony a7R II and Sony a7S II (link to both products are on my Gear page). To give myself more latitude in terms of scaling the video’s resolution, I typically record in 4k. However, the assets used to create this image were taken many years with an old Canon 5D Mark II and an intervalometer. I took that collection of photos and created a timelapse video using Flixel’s Persecond app for the Mac. Honestly, if you’re looking for a ridiculously easy way to stitch interval photos into a timelapse video, you should take a look at Persecond. Actually, it’s also worth noting that I edited the first photo in the sequence and then synced the changes to the rest of the photos, giving the timelapse its distinct look. Finally, I used Flixel’s Cinemagraph Pro to mask the motion back into specific areas, particularly on the lower tier of the Marquam Bridge in Portland, as well as the boat skimming by the Willamette River below.

Here’s the thing that I’ve learned to really appreciate when creating cinemagraphs. You begin appreciating nuance and subtlety. Often times, what I find most striking about a really good cinemagraph is in the minutia of what is moving. In some cases, like this one, motion is clearly visible but there are others, like my frog clip, where the evidence of motion is so subtle that there is genuine joy when you discover it. So with that, I’ll leave you to it. I hope you enjoy the first entry in this new series of mine and I look forward to hearing your thoughts on it as well as see your cinemagraph creations. Share ’em in the comments below!


[x_accordion_item title=”Discount & Disclaimer”]As a disclaimer, Flixel has provided me with complimentary access to their Flixel Cloud Web+Apps membership. However, I have not collected a single penny from them to create any cinemagraphs, write this post, or create my series. I do so specifically because I will always share things that I truly use and love with my audience and this more than qualifies. With that said, Flixel did offer my readers a 20% discount off of their annual Cloud Web+Apps subscription. Just use the code BRIANMATIASH20 at checkout. As a further disclosure, I will earn a commission should you use the code, so thank you very much for your support![/x_accordion_item]