It’s a GIF. It’s a video. It’s really both. Take a video and freeze one of the frames as your “image” and then isolate the motion of a certain aspect of the composition. It’s kind of cool and sort of creepy.
From their About Us page:
A Cinemagraph is an image that contains within itself a living moment that allows a glimpse of time to be experienced and preserved endlessly.
Visual Graphics Artist Kevin Burg began experimenting with the .gif format in this style in 2009 but it wasn’t until he partnered with photographer Jamie Beck to cover NYFW that Cinemagraphs were born. Marrying original content photography with the desire to communicate more to the viewer birthed the cinemagraph process. Starting in-camera, the artists take a traditional photograph and combine a living moment into the image through the isolated animation of multiple frames. To quote supermodel Coco Rocha “it’s more than a photo but not quite a video”.
Beck and Burg named the process “Cinemagraphs” for their cinematic quality while maintaining at its soul the principles of traditional photography. Launched virally through social media platforms Twitter and Tumblr, both the style of imagery and terminology has become a class of its own. The creative duo are looking forward to exploring future display technologies for gallery settings as well as pushing this new art form and communication process as the best way to capture a moment in time or create a true living portrait in our digital age while embracing our need to communicate visually and share instantly.
Check out their entire collection of pseudo-animated images here.