Animated gifs in CoGe and Quartz Composer

Posted on: May 15th, 2012 by .lov.

Animated gifs seems to be in renaissance in the last couple of years, its a popular format again. However, it seems to a not well supported format, or people just don’t know how to use them in the live visuals/installations field, so here we go, just sharing my experience:

Tip of the day #1: Quartz Composer supports animated gifs.

Indeed, and in two different ways. First of all, you can access all the frames of an animated gif. To do that, simple load it with an Image Importer patch, and check on Extract All Images on the Inspector of the patch. This way the patch will create a structure type output, and you can access individual frames via Structure Index Member patches.

Extract images from an animated gif

The second option is much more useful. You can playback animated gifs as well! You just need to use them like video files, so load them with Movie Importer instead of Image Importer! The video below demonstrates the magic:

Tip of the day #2: CoGe supports animated gifs…

since the software uses Quartz Composer for media playback. You just need to use a Movie Player module for playback instead of a Still Image player. The best way is just set it up in Auto Player Select introduced in CoGe 1.2, the video below demonstrates this technique:


That’s all. Thanks the great example gifs  for Pixelnoizz!
If you experience problems with this in Quartz Composer, you may need to install the good old Quicktime Player 7, haven’t tested without it.


8 Responses

  1. gtoledo3 says:

    You can load multi-page pdf files the same way. The first option you list is probably more useful, imo, because all you have to do to animate the pace is to use an interpolation patch or patch time+ math, and you can easily control the pace, scrub backwards, play only a few given frames, etc, and it also embeds the movie in the qtz file. (I did a tutorial on this a long time ago, and was surprised at how many people didn’t know about this.)

    • .lov. says:

      Yes, there are a lot of options in QC people still don’t know, and they posting a lot about QC doesn’t supports animated gifs, just google on those words. Fact: we should write more about the basics, I guess.

      • Hehe, guilty as charged. But I’m very happy to be proved wrong. I did a search and didn’t find anything on QC or CoGe + animated gifs. This opens up for new ideas.

        It would be very cool to be able to auto load media from a specific folder. That would go great with my Loopcam idea or with continuously created photos/images or videos.

        • .lov. says:

          I think you can do that by creating a custom Player module for CoGe in QC 😉

          • You’re right, I was thinking about that last night. But then it has to be played from a folder and not from the media set. Does that have any performance issues?
            The Auto Player movie “CoGeMovie.qtz” you showed in the video, didn’t exist in my installation (1.2.1) but I got them to play with one of the others.

          • .lov. says:

            You can drop a folder to a media slot (you can drop anything to a media slot just to be exactly), and a Player can access to that folder’s path. Or just creating a simple QC composition and load it. No performance issue will happen. Drop me a mail if you need some assistance to build that stuff, I’d love to help.
            The CoGeMovie.qtz is a new player for the upcoming CoGe 1.3, it uses a custom QC Plugin I made for CoGe.

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