GIMP Tutorial: How to color your own
What is "color your own"?
"Color your own" is a process by which you color a black and
white digital scrapbook element, using a color of your choice. "Color
your own" elements have image characteristics that allow them to be
color. One of the greatest advantages of "Color your own"
elements is that they can be change an endless number of times
match any color, allowing them to match any kit or layout. This
tutorial will teach how to color your own elements using The GIMP. To
color your own elements, we will use these digital scrapbooking
- "Alpha to selection" to select our the shape of our bow.
- "Layers Mode" to adjus the color on the bow.
- "Merge Visible Layers" to merge the color and the bow layers.
We will be coloring this back and
white bow to red:
Step 1: Open the "Color your own" bow
Step 2: Make sure your Layers Dialog window is open
dialog window is a very important tool for digital scrapbooking. It allows
you to see how all of the digital scrapbook elements are place in
relationship to each other in your digital layout.
opens the layers dialog upon starting the program, but if you close
it, The GIMP does not re-open it again, unless you tell it to.
layers dialog window can only be open from an image window. In our
example, we are going to use the window
To open the layers dialog window perform these
On our Main
Window [The one with the bow] -> Click on the "Dialogs" Menu -> Create New Dock -> Layers, Channels & Path
** Please note: This window can display
three diffrerent dialogs: The Layers, The channels and The Paths. To view
the Layers tab, click on the layers icon [This is color in red in
our "Layers Dialog Window" image below].
Layers Dialog Window
Step 3: Add Color to your bow
In this step, we will be coloring
our bow. Coloring our bow will consists on
- Creating a a new layer to add our own color
- Tracing our bow shape to color only the shape of our bow ( instead
of coloring the entire layer )
- Selecting our color using the Color Tool
- Painting our bow using the Paint Tool.
- Using the Layers Mode to blend our color with the bow
Creating a new layer to add
our own color:
Adding the color to a new layer give us the
flexibility to play with the blending color modes. In the later steps, you
will see how fun this is.
On the Layers
click on the "New Layer"
[This is the first button on the bottom of the Layers
Once you click on the "New Layer" button , the "New Layer popup window"
opens. On the "New Layers" popup window, select the defaults values. These
values will change depending on the size of the first window that was open
using The GIMP.
On the "New Layer Pop Up window", Click
Note: If you do not see this winow,
move your GIMP windows around. Sometimes The GIMP Popup windows hide in
the back of The GIMP Tools and Image windows.
This is the New Layer Pop Up window:
Tracing our bow shape to color only the shape of our bow (
instead of coloring the entire layer )
In order to color
just the area of our bow and not the entire layer, we will first "trace"
our bow. To trace our bow, we will use the "Alpha to selection" tool. This tool
is very useful when you want to select the shape of your digital scrapbook
elements, as you will see in this tutorial.
To trace the shape of your
On the Layers Dialog Window -> Click on the "Bow_color_your_own" layer.
Layers Dialog Window -> Right-Click on
your mouse and select "Alpha to
Your bow should now look like
In this step we will be
selecting our color using the Color Tool and Painting our bow using the
Paint Tool :
While your bow is still trace,
we will pick our favorite color and paint our bow. To pick your color, use
and to paint your bow, use the Paint Tool. For this tutorial, I picked the color
To paint your new
On the GIMP Tools Dialog, Click on the "Color
Tool" and select a color
On the Layers Dialog, Click on the "New Layer"
On The GIMP Tools Dialog, Click on the
Your GIMP Windows should look like
Make sure you have two layers on your Layers Dialog: The
"Bow_color_your_own" and the "New Layer". Also, make sure your bow is
color like in this picture.
Using the Layers Mode to blend our
color with the bow
Notice how the color of our bow looks
unreal. To add realism to our bow, we will use the Layers blending
On the Layers Dialog Window->
Click on the layer with the name "New Layers"
On the Layers Dialog
Window-> Click on the layer Mode, Select "Color"
Your bow should now look like this:
Step 4: Merge layers
Our bow is color!! We will now finalize our
work by merging the two layers so that we can save our bow as a png file.
On the Layers Dialog
Window-> Click on the "Bow_color_your_own" layer.
On the Layers Dialog
Window-> Right Click on your mouse and select "Merge Visible
On the "Merge Layers" Popup window
select "Clipped to bottom Layer".
Note: If you do not see this winow, move your
GIMP windows around. Sometimes The GIMP Popup windows hide in the back of
The GIMP Tools and Image windows.
Step 4: Time to save our bow!
We are done! Its time to save
our hard work.
On the Main Window [The one with the
bow] -> Click File -> Save As
Enter your new bow's name. Make sure that you
change the name and do not save over your "color your own" original
image. In this example, I rename my file
In the "Save as PNG" Popup window,
make these selections:
If you do not see this winow, move your GIMP windows around. Sometimes The
GIMP Popup windows hide in the back of The GIMP Tools and Image
You completed the "Color Your Own Elements
You can now recolor any
"Color your Own" elements. The technique is the same, what changes
is the element!
We want to see your first "Color your own Element" ! Post it in our
GIMP Tutorials Homework Gallery:
GIMP Tutorials Homework Gallery
Have questions ? Got lost in the process? Would like to thanks us? We
love to hear from you! Post your comments in our GIMP Tutorials Forum:
GIMP Tutorial Forum
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