I recently acquired my first smart phone and started playing with mobile video and making gifs. Click on the picture above to see what I’ve been up to.

As a storyteller I think it’s important to look at alternative forms. The idea of introducing time to still images fascinates me. Beyond fodder for Reddit or trying to mimic the newspapers in Harry Potter, there’s a real unexplored opportunity for expanding a story beyond 500 words or a powerful yet static single image. Looking at the iconic images of our past, one has to wonder what they may look like as a gif.

Not to say they would have been better, it’s hard to argue against the decissive moment, but perhaps in a different way these pictures would provide another emotional glimpse into the past.

Instead of an image of the Hindenburg Explosion perhaps a 10 second gif that acts as a mini newsreel.

Or perhaps gifs as portraiture? When Yousef Karsh took Winston Churchill’s cigar away he created an iconic portrait of the man, but how fun would it have been to see a gif of Churchill reacting to the request, brows furled, jaw clenched, perhaps an angry twitch or a moment of acceptance; seeing the man in motion.

The possibilities are out there, the next couple of years are going to be interesting.

Oh and for the record I say it’s pronounced gif, not jif like the peanut butter.