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Watch These Embroidered Zoetropes Come To Life

Before there were GIFs or Vine, there was the zoetrope.

Popularized in Victorian England, zoetropes are devices that turn a succession of still images into an animated visual loop when spun. Put simply, Zoetropes are the OG GIFs, IRL.

Now, digital artist Elliot Schultz has taken the old-fashioned technique to a whole new level with embroidery. For his final student project at the Australian National University, Elliot Schultz embroidered 10-inch fabric discs with a series of colorful images that are fitted to a turntable. While the disc turns, a strobe light illuminates it in sync with the embroidered frames, bringing the animation to life.

Schultz’s zoetropes range from trippy, abstract geometric forms that move in undulating patterns to detailed images of mice walking with canes. On his Behance page, Schultz gets meta with animated GIFs of his animated zoetropes. Check it out here.

About the author

Meg Miller is an associate editor at Co.Design covering art, technology, and design.

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