The Ultimate Animated GIF Photo Booth Guide

animated gif photo booth hollywood

Animated GIF’s (pronounced Jifs or Gifs, depending on who you ask) have soared in popularity over the past few years. Animated GIFs are images in (G)raphics (I)nterchange (F)ormat that combine a number of images or frames into a single file. The frames are ordered and then displayed in an animated type sequence.

Browse social media networks like Facebook and Twitter and you are sure to see animated GIFs being shared and discussed. You can even visit sites like Giphy to view, create, and share GIFs. As with anything that is popular among consumers and millennials, the event industry began implementing animated GIFs a few years back. The most common and popular animated GIF integration sprouted by the use of animated GIF photo booths.

The goal for this guide is to provide some insight, answer many frequently asked questions, and to provide some examples and visuals to better inform you of the available options. Below are some of the most common questions from event professionals, meeting planners, account managers and executives, marketing managers, and others who are looking to utilize animated GIF booths-

What Does an Animated GIF Photo Booth Do? How does an Animated GIF Photo Booth Work?

Similar to traditional photo booths, animated photo booths snap multiple photos per session (3 or 4 in most cases). The photo booth software then converts the still photos into a sequential animated GIF instantly. This digital animated GIF is then available to the consumer or user for sharing to Email, Text, Facebook, Twitter, and other channels. The animated GIF can typically save as either a GIF or MP4 video file.

What Does an Animated GIF Photo Booth Look Like?

The animated GIF photo booth comes in many different form factors. From enclosed, more traditional looking booths, to open air type booths and kiosks, to even handheld animated GIF booth tablets for portability. The hardware (or booth) can have many looks, the main functionality is achieved through a reliable software program that makes the magic happen. Some events also prefer a step and repeat banner, or vinyl type backdrop for the background of the photos, while others prefer an enclosed booth or the natural background of the event or location.

Photo Video Booth Travelers Tablet Photo Sharing Kiosk

Can an Animated GIF Photo Booth Print Takeaways?

Yes! As mentioned, to create an animated GIF, 3 or 4 photos are taken. Those still photos can be printed on a 3 or 4 photo overlay or frame on 4″ x 6″ or 5″ x 7″ paper. Animated GIFs with prints not only provides an interactive and digital component, but also the printed takeaway that guests always enjoy. Here is an example of the animated GIF and the GIF print with the four photos and branding.

comic con animated gif photo booth comic con gif photo booth

What Other Animated GIF Photo Booth Options Are Available?

Besides the standard animations that have been discussed, advances to photo booth software has brought about new features and options to animated GIF photo booths. For example, besides the subjects of the photos being animated, the photo overlay or frame can also have animation added. The overlay is over laid on top of the photo itself and can bring some elements to life in the photos (ex. falling snow flakes). In the example animated GIF below, notice how the TruTV logo/banner on the bottom is scrolling across the screen!

Another great advancement to animated GIFs is the option of animated GIF backgrounds. As you see in the example below, the background can take on it’s own animation and effect, giving the animated GIF another layer of movement! In order to achieve the animated GIF background, a green screen is required.

Animated GIF Photo Booth  Animated GIF Background

Besides that, options like data capture/surveys, custom on screen user interface branding, and photo galleries and micro sites are available to further enhance the activation.

Who Designs the Photo Frame Overlay and Graphic Assets for GIF Booths?

In most cases, you or your creative team can be provided the templates and necessary specs to have free reign on the overall design! If you do not have that resource or prefer that we help out, our team can assist with adding your branding, logo, or other design elements to the Animated GIFs and prints.

Why Do Animated GIF Photo Booth Images Look Pixelated?

If you have seen animated GIFs taken at photo booths, you may notice they are not the standard DSLR, high resolution quality you have become accustomed to. Without getting too technical, GIFs use an 8-bit color model (8x8x8=256), so they are limited to 256 colors.  This applies to the digital, animated GIF, and not the still photos that are taken which can be printed.

Why Choose an Animated GIF Photo Booth Versus Other Photo Booth Options?

Photo booth technology has evolved greatly over the past decade and the options can be daunting… Animated GIF photo booths provide an interactive and enhanced digital photo experience versus still photos. The movement of the GIFs, along with the advanced features like animated overlays can provide a unique and creative element to your event. Most importantly, guests have a great time and always walk away with an experience and smile on their faces.

How Much do Animated GIF Photo Booths Cost?

Pricing can vary from market to market, company to company, and are dependent on event specifics. For example, how many hours and days is the GIF booth needed?  Which features are being requested (ex. social media sharing, animated overlays, printing versus digital sharing only, etc)?  Due to the varying factors, please reach out to discuss needs and ideas!

Fonteco Event Technologies is an industry leader in Animated GIF photo booth services, #hashtag print stations, social media display walls, green screen activations, charging stations, and other event technologies nationwide. Contact us today with any further questions!