Emotes are a fantastic way of being able to give your audience additional ways to react to your content. But do you know what's even better than standard static emotes? Looping animated emotes.
Recently, Twitch has rolled out an update that allows all Twitch affiliates and partners to upload animated emotes to their channel. So in this video, I’m going to show you exactly how you can turn those standard static emotes into looping animated emotes that your chat is going to love, spam, and probably meme on far too much. Everything that we use in this video is completely free. And the skills that you'll learn can be applied to all sorts of designs that you'll do as a content creator, so let's do it.
So in this video, we’re going to be making three different types of animated emotes. And although I haven't asked him yet, I’m actually going to be using my podcast co-host Ben's face to make all of these animated emotes. We’re going to be making a simple dancing or jamming emote. We’re going to make an emote for those POGChamp moments where you want to be papped by the paparazzi. And finally, we're going to make a feelsbadman style emote with the rain falling and slowly fading to black when things just don't go to plan.
Obviously the idea here is that you use your own face as the base of these emotes and then you're going to be giving your audience three different animated emotes that they can spam in your chat. Software-wise, we're actually going to be using DaVinci Resolve as our editor of choice today. The reason being that it's completely free for absolutely anybody to download, but if you already own Adobe's Creative Suites or something like Final Cut Pro, you can still follow along with this tutorial, just bear in mind that some of the effect names that we'll be applying might be named slightly differently, but it'll just be a Google away.
So if you haven't yet downloaded DaVinci Resolve, you can do so for free from the Black Magic website. Once you've got that installed, you want to create a new project, name it something that we'll remember like animated emotes, and then open that up. Within our new project, we want to make a new timeline by coming up here to file, new timeline. And there's a few settings here that we'll need to change. DaVinci Resolve likes to start its timelines one hour in in case you ever need to add any footage to the start, but we don't need that in such a simple project. So just change the start time code to zero, zero, zero all the way across the board.
Next we want to uncheck the use project settings box, which will open up this format tab where we can go across and we actually want to change our timeline resolution to custom and then enter into the resolution here 256 by 256.The last thing to change is just the frame rate from 24 to 30 and then you can click create. Twitch officially supports GIFs up to 60 frames in length. So by using a 30 FPS timeline, we know that we have two seconds to work with for our animation to complete. Once you've got your timeline set up, we can come down here and open up the edit workspace, which is basically the usual timeline view that you might be used to from the video editors. Right, so first let's make our dancing or jamming emote as it's by far the simplest.
The first thing you need to do is import the media, the image that you're going to be using for the dancing remote. So you should see this media bin up here, if you don't, just toggle the media pull option up here and then right click and go to import media. Find the image that you want to use and then click open.
Next, we can drag that image down onto the video track one of our timeline. And since this is such a short emote, we can zoom in quite a bit so that we get a better view of exactly what we're creating. Like I said, it's a short emote, so we don't need anywhere near this long, if we scrub across here on the timeline, so that the time code reads about 20 frames in, we can actually trim our clip to that point by using shift and the square close brackets and that'll trim that it back to be 20 frames long, I'm just going to zoom in a couple of more times here since we've got so much room to work with and we then want to set out in and out points for the sequence.
So scroll back to the start, use I for in point, scroll to the end and then use O to set our end point. And then we want to loop the animation just by clicking this button. That means that when we're previewing the clip, we can watch it and it'll keep looping, which is obviously what's going to happen when we upload this emote to Twitch.
Now before we actually get to animating Ben and making him bounce up and down for the emote, the first thing we want to do is actually get the framing right because these emotes are going to be so small when they're displayed in Twitch chat. So you want to make sure you're using as much space as possible. So with the clip selected down here in the timeline, we want to come up here and select the inspector box and then just play with the zoom and positioning to make sure that we have Ben's face in the center of the frame.
So the animation itself is going to be really quite simple. Let’s scroll along the timeline to around 10 frames in, you can always use the right and left arrow keys to select a certain frame. So 10 frames in, we’re going to add a position key frame at this point. Next, let's go back to the start of the timeline, so key frame zero, and we're going to actually raise the position up so that Ben looks like he's bouncing down into place. If we now play this back, you can see that it's just a very boring animation of Ben sort of coming down into place and then staying put. We can also display these key frames by clicking this little button below the clip and then we'll see our exact key frames. So if you ever need to adjust these, move them across, you can do so there.
Next we can trim the clip to just be these 10 key frames. So come up here to 10 frames in on the timeline with the clip selected, do our shift and close square brackets and then we just have the simple animation playing over and over again.
Last couple of things to do is to hold down the alt key and drag this clip up onto a second video track. And we actually want it to start when the other one ends. So we have the exact same clip now playing twice.
And the final thing to do is just to flip this second clip. So with the second clip selected, we can come up here, click this little flip horizontal button in the transform controls and then now if we play this back, you can see we have our animated GIF, how simple was that? Obviously, feel free to play around with the key frames. If you want things quicker, want things slower, you can adjust the key frames as you see fit that doesn't have to be somebody bouncing downwards. It can be coming in from different angles or whatever you want to do, but hopefully, this has given you a good idea of how to make a really simple sort of bouncing, energetic emote for your chat.
The next emote we're going to be making the paparazzi style one. So again, we start by importing the media that we want to use in this emote. We can keep working on the same timeline here because we're going to be rendering out each of the seas videos separately. So dragging newly imported media onto the timeline, just start it far enough across right. I like to start mine at sort of even second intervals so I'm going to find where one second into this timeline is and just make sure that it starts there. We also want to move our in and out points across to this new sequence. So with our timeline at one second in, I’m going to press I to move the in point. And then if we scrub across, maybe zoom out once, this one's going to be a little bit longer, around a second and a half is what we want to make this one.
So we come across here to two and a half seconds in and then click O on our out point. And we can also trim the clip to that point with shift and closed square brackets. Again, we're going to want to play around with that positioning and sizing to make sure that this displays nice and large when we're using it in such a tiny form on Twitch so play around with the zoom and the positioning if you need to. This one looks pretty set up for me already.
Now to create that fake paparazzi camera flash, we’re going to use an effect. So make sure that you have the effects panel showing. You can do so just by clicking up here to display it, and then if we click the search box, we want to search for the brightness flash, and then we can drag that onto the start of the eclipse that it shows this sort of transition animation over the start of the clip. By default, this brightness flash is going to go on for far too long, so we can drag actually the right-hand side of this so that it's around 10 frames long, if we now go to the start of the timeline, you’ll see that this brightness flash is actually causing the preview to show black, which we don't want. We want to start with the video of Ben's face and kind of the flash halfway through. So we can actually drag our whole clip to the left. And if we let go, we can see as this affects the preview. So we want to start around here where it's sort of halfway flash, but you can still see the face behind it.
Next, we want to trim the endpoint to around 10 or so frames after the flash has finished. So we can use the shift and close square brackets again. And this is actually the main bulk of the work done for this emote. All we have to do now is duplicate this, position it in place, and change the actual positioning of Ben's face within the frame. So similar to our first emote, we’re going to hold down the alt key on our keyboard and drag the first clip up onto the second video track. And we want to position it around about here, so sort of halfway through the end bit that doesn't have the flash on.
Next, what we're going to do is select our second clip and actually adjust the transform, which you can do by clicking on this little chevron button here and selecting transform, which will turn this box white and actually allow us to adjust the rotation and the position and the sizing of Ben within that preview. I’m just going to adjust the preview down here to 200%so that I can still scale it, and we're going to rotate Ben by using this little handle here and maybe just enlarge him a little bit. And remember, this is just applying to the second clip.
To loop through the playback, we can move our play head back to the start at the in point, and we're going to use control, alt, and forward slash, and that is going to continuously loop. And we can see the first two sections of this sort of paparazzi clip. The last thing that we need to do is just add one third flash, I think we'll probably rotate Ben completely upside down, and that's our GIF complete. So exactly as before, let’s drag our second clip upby using the alt key, position it so it's roughly the same, and then with that clip selected on the timeline, hovering over it, we're going to use the transform controls. I think we're going to flip Ben completely upside down, zoom him in even more to really show off that horrendous pose. And then if we play this back, control, alt, forward slash, we can see the paparazzi clip is pretty much finished.
Onto our third and final emote: the rainy, sad one. Now for this one, you’re going to need a little rain animation that I've linked down the description below this video, or you can always get it from the Gaming Careers discord in the free downloads channel. So just with the previous two emotes, we want to import our media. This time, selecting both the rain loop, as well as the image that we want to use. So you can just control click to select two things, click open, and then we're going to want to drag these down into our timeline.
So let's scroll across, find a nice empty space of timeline. We first want to take our image and put that on video track one, and then we want to take our rain loop and put that on video track two. And again, I want to work from a blank slate. So three seconds in on my time code here, I’m going to highlight both layers, do shift, open square brackets to trim to the start point. And this one's to be two seconds long.
So we want to go across two seconds, which will be two seconds after three seconds and then shift close square brackets so that we've trimmed it to that point. And again, we can set our in and out points by using I and Oso that we make sure when we're looping through this, we’re watching the right timeline.
The next thing we want to do is add an effect onto video track three. So come across to the effects library, click search, and type in adjustment. We should find this one called adjustment clip, which we can drag onto video track three. And then of course, we can select it and trim it so it's the same length. If we now loop through the playback, you can see that we have this rain animation on top of Ben's face, but we want to add two different effects to this. We want to firstly do a slow zoom in into Ben's sad stare. And the second thing we want to do is fade from full color to black and white.
So first of all, let's deal with the slow zoom in, so with the adjustment clip selected, we want to come up here to the inspector and see this dynamic zoom option. If we just single click somewhere in that box, it’s going to open up an extra option that we're going to need, but first let's enable the dynamic zoom. And then if we loop back through the playback, you can see that rather than zooming into his face, it’s zooming out, which might be a look that you like, but I would rather it zoomed in.
So all we have to do to do that is just click this swap button in the dynamic zoom option. It’s going to swap around and now we have the slow zoom into Ben's face. If you want to adjust the framing, maybe get even more zoomed in or less zoomed in or zoom in on a different section, you can actually adjust the dynamic zoom. Again, if we click on this little chevron down here, rather than using a transform control, we open up the dynamic zoom control. You get two different boxes. The green box being where it starts and the red box being where it ends. So if you want to zoom in more, you can just adjust the red box, maybe focus a little bit more on the face. And then if we loop through the playback again, you can see that we have more of a zoom into Ben's eyes now.
So the last thing to is add that fade from color to black and white. And for this, we're going to be opening up Fusion, which is effectively like DaVinci Resolve's version of After Effects, but it's actually built into the software. So if we right click on our adjustment clip and then click the open in Fusion page, that’s going to open up Fusion. You don't really need to worry about nodes or too many other things here, this can get super complicated, but I'm going to keep it really easy. We want to open up our effects tab just by highlighting it here and search for color, the American spelling, and then find color corrector. Just click that once, you'll add the node between our media in and media out. Again, you don't really need to worry about any of this thing. And then we want to come over here to the inspector actually adjust our saturation. So since we're going to be key framing the saturation to actually get it to go from full saturation to black and white, we want to open up the key frames box here, and this shows us again, our timeline. We want to add a key frame a little way into our clip with the saturation at full. So find the saturation slider here in the color corrector, click to add a key frame, and then scrub across to around 70, 80% of the way through the clip and we're going to adjust our saturation all the way down to zero which is going to turn everything black and white, and that's all you need to do in the Fusion page, you can head back now to the edit tab, and if we loop through the playback, we should have the slow zooming in and slow turning to black and white of our final emote.
Okay, so we finished creating our three animated emotes within DaVinci Resolve. The last important step really is about exporting and converting them into a format that places like Twitch and Discord accept. To do this, we need to go across to the deliver page here within DaVinci Resolve. You might just want to zoom in a bit on your timeline so you can actually see the three different animations that we've created, and you want to make sure that the render mode here is set to in/out range so we can actually set the in and out points for each GIF that we're going to be rendering.
So let's start with our first GIF that we created. So we scroll across on the timeline, set our in and out points using I and O, and weirdly DaVinci Resolve seems to add an extra frame at the end where you set your out points. So I just recommend coming one frame in and then pressing O again, just so that it loops exactly without any black frame weirdness. And then we can come up here to our render settings. You want to select some custom render settings. And here in the file name and location, you just simply choose where you want this rendered video to go. You can leave the render set on single clip, and obviously, we want to be exporting the video.
Now the format and codec options are quite key because we're rendering out the couple of these GIFs with transparency. So for format, we want to set quick time and for codec, we want to select the GoPro Cineform code and change the type from 10 bit to RGB 16 bit, which unlocks this export alpha option. So make sure you have export alpha checked. Frame rate looks good at 30.
Resolution is what we set it to at the beginning, 256 by 256.Quality set to best. That all looks good to me so we can now click add to render queue, and you can see that goes up into the jobs for the render queue here.
Next, we can just repeat the exact same process for our second GIF. Set the in and out points. Remember to bring it one frame from the end. We just want to change the name basically. And all the other settings are the same. Finally, for our third export, there’s only one setting that you need to change. And that's just purely cause we're not using a transparent background. You can uncheck the export alpha. Again, name it whatever you want. I’ll just call it Ben Sad. Uncheck export alpha because we don't need it and then add to render queue. Once these are all added to your render queue, you can come over here to the queue and just click on render all. It shouldn't take long since all of these animations are so simple.
So we really almost there now. We just need to convert these MOV files into GIF format. For that, we're going to be using easygif.com. Go to that in your browser, click on video to GIF and browse for your first exported video, which was the dance one, open that, and then click upload video Once that's uploaded, we just have a few controls to adjust here. We can leave size on original. Frame rate we want to set that as 25and for method for the first two emotes that have transparency, we need to change this to the preserve transparency option, but obviously, for the third emote, the sad one where we don't have any transparency, you can leave this set at FFMPEG.
Once you've done that, you can click convert to GIF and it'll begin the process of converting that to a GIF with transparency. One last step here is we need to optimize this GIF by clicking on the optimize button. There are two reasons for this. Firstly, we need to make sure that we get the file size below one megabyte, which is Twitch's limit for uploading an animated emote. But secondly, you can get some weird ghosting issues if you don't optimize your GIF. So even if it is below a megabyte like this one is currently, it’s still worth clicking on the optimize button and just doing some light compression, an option of around 30, clicking optimize GIF, and then this is the final GIF that shouldn't have any ghosting issues at all.
If your optimized GIF is still above the one-megabyte threshold, then you're going to need to use a higher compression level to get it below a megabyte, basically. This one is well below the one-megabyte threshold. So now that it's optimized, we can click save to download it to our computer. It’s going to be named something super generic, like easygif.com, GIF made online, or something like that. So make sure you rename it, put it in a folder where you can find all of your animated GIFs in the future.
Obviously now just repeat the same process for the other two GIFs, get them all saved onto your computer, and then head across to the Twitch dashboard. In the viewer rewards section, you have an emotes page where you can click to upload a new animated emote. Simply browse for it on your computer, open it up, and then Twitch will handle all of the different resizing. And you can even, here, see previews of what it will look like in both light and dark mode on Twitch in chat.
The last thing to do is simply give your emote a name. It’s going to use your prefix, obviously, and then a name. And this is what your chat is going to continually spam, probably meme you with, and you'll forever regret giving them the tools to meme you with your own face.
If you enjoyed this video and learned something new, please do give it a thumbs up. It massively helps out the channel and I'd highly recommend checking out this video next, which shows you exactly how you can select specific messages from your chat to show on stream.