Which is it? Gif or Jif?

Off Book - Animated GIFs: The Birth of a Medium

GIFs are one of the oldest image formats used on the web. Throughout their history, they have served a huge variety of purposes, from functional to entertainment. Now, 25 years after the first GIF was created, they are experiencing an explosion of interest and innovation that is pushing them into the terrain of art. In this episode of Off Book, we chart their history, explore the hotbed of GIF creativity on Tumblr, and talk to two teams of GIF artists who are evolving the form into powerful new visual experiences.


Patrick Davison, MemeFactory

TopherChris, Tumblr

Pamela Reed and Matthew Rader, Reed+Rader

Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg, Cinemagraphs

Story Development: Mike Rugnetta, Internet Culture Researcher, MemeFactory

GIFs by:

The Internet. We wish we could attribute all the GIFs we used, but we aren’t even sure if that would be possible!

But…a special thanks to Mr GIF (http://mr-gif.com/) whose work appears in the TopherChris section.

Music by:

Mindthings: http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/mindthings

Space Frequencies: http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/Space_frequencies

Casanelli: http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/Casanelli

Shamil Elvenheim: http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/shamil/

Kevin Macleod: http://www.incompetech.com

Follow Off Book:

Twitter: @pbsoffbook

Tumblr: http://pbsarts.tumblr.com/

Produced by Kornhaber Brown: http://www.kornhaberbrown.com