Adventures Once Had

a log of cinemagraphs, photos, thoughts and gifs by Sandy Noto

25 Jul

Definitely wish my weekend plans were more tropical but I’m limited to daydreaming for now. Here’s another piece I worked on for St. Ives

Notes: 1132

21 Jul

Ever notice how rarely people post rainy photos from vacation trips? Last weekend, I went out to a Chitecture event and was surprised to find myself in monsoon conditions. Even more surprising, tons of people came out and made the best of a really rainy day. 

-Sandy Noto

Notes: 36

18 Jul


Notes: 38

17 Jul

Over the 4th of July weekend, Eli and I headed to Boston to visit his grandmother, Telegram. We spent a considerable amount of time going through my cinemagraphs since Telegram has made several requests in the past. She noted her favorite posts and critiqued the few she didn’t like. Later Eli explained Instagram and why we were often tapping away at our iPhones. 

- Sandy Noto

Notes: 15

15 Jul

I’ve been working on several cinemagraphs and gifs for St. Ives this year and was so excited to put my juicing obsession to good use.

Notes: 1852

14 Jul

Getting organized for the week. I’m currently very smitten with all of Rifle Paper Co’s notepads

-Sandy Noto

Notes: 12

9 Jul

The done piece from my “How to create a Cinemagraph or GIF" post. 

-Sandy Noto

Notes: 23

9 Jul

How to create a Cinemagraph or GIF

For a long time I have felt that there are plenty of online resources on how to make cinemagraphs and GIFs but I have gained a lot from reading about what works for others and it seems only right to contribute what I can to the space. In order to cover new ground, I’ve linked out to many of the resources that I’ve used in the past so this is by no means a complete guide. Here is the process that works for me:

1. The idea.
I’m often jotting down rough concepts or ideas that I stew over and refine over time. Occasionally, I see something, film it and am done but that’s rare. 

2. Footage.
I try to get footage that is as close to my vision as possible but don’t worry too much because everything can be tweaked.image

Personally, I use a Canon 7D and keep a GorillaPod on hand when filming. I also have a regular tripod for more planned out projects but I find it too bulky to carry around on a regular basis. When Eli and I went to New Mexico, we also rented a Canon 5d mkii, 15mm Zeiss and Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II but at the end of each day the camera bag felt like a bag of bricks! 

3. Import.
For a sample piece, here is my original footage: image

Most of the time, I import footage and edit on a MacBook Air and keep everything organized on external hard drives.  All my footage and photos are databased on Lightroom. I also occasionally use Lightroom to do initial color grading with vsco filters


4. After Effects.
This is optional, I often create pieces entirely in Photoshop. I use After Effects for: color adjustments, footage stabilization, timing changes, effects and more. For my sample footage, I didn’t have a tripod so the footage was quite jittery and I stabilized it in After Effects. After that, I made additional color adjustments. Also, I’ve created cinemagraph style videos for Instagram in After Effects. Here’s a great write up on the video requirements for doing so. Each effect could be its own post so I’m not going to go into each one but you can find a lot of good tutorials on YouTube.


5. Photoshop.
There are a lot of apps and programs that make cinemagraphs but I personally stick with Photoshop. I import the footage, find my film segment and flatten it into clips. Usually I like to duplicate everything to a new file, check my loop, clean up my frames, create my masks and test the timing.image

6. Save for web.
I check to see how large the file is and make adjustments from there.

I skipped over how to mask the GIFs in order to create cinemagraphs because I feel that the tutorials I linked to at the beginning do a good job of covering that. As with most things, it’s taken lots of practice and several failures for me to get to a point where I’m happy with my pieces. If you find yourself stuck and have a specific question shoot me a tweet or email

-Sandy Noto

Notes: 28

5 Jul

Whenever we’re heading off on a trip, I’m always so excited to leave but I quickly find myself missing home. We’re in Boston for a few days. 

-Sandy Noto

Notes: 3967

4 Jul

Summertime smoke bombs

Notes: 25

4 Jul

Happy 4th of July 

Notes: 12

30 Jun

I’ve been attempting to rediscover Vine but each time I end up falling down a rabbit hole of random humor and amazing animal posts.

Made this to capture my favorite Liberty of London x Nike sneakers from Japan before inevitably getting them scuffed up. 

-Sandy Noto

Notes: 15