Pick up your phone. Open WhatsApp. Locate the family group chat. Scroll up maybe two, three thumb-flocks. There it is: grandad’s dropped a Drake gif into a conversation about which Vienetta everyone would prefer at your aunt’s 60th. The whole world has gone gif crazy.
So it stands to reason that gif database Giphy has worked with Squarespace and launched the first-ever film festival dedicated entirely to works that are under 18 seconds long.
Work can now be submitted for consideration for the festival, which takes place in New York on 8 November 2018. Giphy is asking American based animators and artists to submit loopable content that slides nicely into the following categories: Narrative, Experimental, Stop-Motion, Animated, Wild Card/Other.
Jess Gilliam, Giphy’s brand creative director, is of the opinion that as communication gears increasingly toward the digital sphere, we find ourselves trying to communicate both more efficiently and visually. “Gifs,” she says, “can convey such specific emotions, concisely tell a story, make someone laugh, etc,” adding that “it just makes sense that society has embraced this medium for communicating to each other, expressing our personalities digitally, and entertaining one another.”
She’s keen to stress that potential entrants – who sadly still have to be based in America – should “be creative, be crazy, be weird!” Jess and her team feel that by imposing such a tight timeframe on entries, creative creators who don’t have access to “a big budget or fancy equipment,” won’t find themselves deterred.
If you’re out in the States and have a penchant for hyper-loopable short-form video content, you could see your work on the big screen in the big apple. Full competition details can be found here.
Oh, and to get you in the mood, Giphy have pinged over this exclusive pizza-themed gif.