October 16th, 2008

Exercise 4a – GIMP

Task 1: Replacing backgrounds

We start with a basic picture with a rather unexciting background.


We use the Fuzzy Select Tool (Photoshop users would refer to it as “the magic wand tool”) to select our background. Holding down the shift key adds further areas to the selection. 

When we are happy with it, we create a new layer mask by right-clicking on our background layer and choosing Add Layer mask … We want our selection to be the layer mask.

We’re almost done! The last step is to copy our new, shiny background into the picture:

Tadaah! The result looks as follows:

Task 2: Aurora Borealis

There is a great step-by-step tutorial on how to create a “Mac OS X Leopard”-like Aurora Borealis effect: http://www.abduzeedo.com/leopards-aurora-borealis-wallpaper-gimp

Here my result:

Task 3: Red Eye Removal

A very common task in the field of image editing is red eye removal. Most image editing programs include pre-defined RER filters. In this example, I show you how to use GIMP’s Red Eye Removal Tool and how to further improve your image.

Here is the picture we want to edit:

In GIMP, the feature to remove red eyes is under Filters -> Enhance -> Red Eye Removal …. Just applying this filter would not do the trick in this case. The color of the whole image would be altered. So we select each eye with the Ellipse Select Tool and create a layer mask for just that eye.  

Now we can apply our filter to both eyes individually which gives as a lot more flexibility.

But even with that done, the right eye still looks brighter than the left one. So we adjust the color by going to Colors -> Hue-Saturation until both eyes look similar.

Here is my final result:

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