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Selective Coloring

#1 User is offline   fencepost 

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 01:47 AM

Here's a tutorial showing how to take a photograph and selectively remove colors, leaving those areas that will provide greatest impact. I first learned this technique using masks, which work very well; however, this technique works in a similar fashion, just a little bit differently. As I said in my lightning tutorial, Let's think outside the box!.

Here is a picture of a beautiful moth we observed at our office building.

You can download this picture and use it for the tutorial if you would like, or use your own!

Duplicate the image and convert the Background Layer to grayscale by selecting Layer | Colors | Desaturate. Rename the layers if you want, but we'll only be using these two.

Posted Image

Now make the Upper Layer active and set its Layer Mode to Color like so:

Posted Image

Here's the fun part! Grab a brush (I used a very large brush because I've got a lot of "uncoloring" to do) and start painting. Everywhere you brush, your color image will become uncolored. Keep brushing away those areas you want to "remove". For the highly detailed areas, pick a small, fuzzy brush and zoom in really close.

Posted Image

That's all there is to it. Now can it get any easier? :w: How'd you do?

Here's my final product.

Posted Image

Keep on GIMPing!!

:l:
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#2 User is offline   Ali Imran 

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 02:57 AM

Inded very nice tutorial,
I would request you to upload original image, so that we can produce quality tutorials using it.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

regards
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#3 User is offline   fencepost 

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 03:10 AM

Your wish is my command, Sir Ali :l:

http://img.photobuck.../Mothresize.jpg

Edit: At the request of gatormac2112, I've changed this to a link rather than the actual picture for those with lower speed connections.

Art
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#4 User is offline   Ali Imran 

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 03:57 AM

Thank you very much for sharing the original picture.
I am delighted to have members like you on GT.

I appecuate your input.

regards
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#5 User is offline   Ali Imran 

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 11:09 AM

And what about this one ? :w:

see attached image
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#6 User is offline   codebox 

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 06:47 PM

hey hey a real nice one :) thanks for the gr8 tip....
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#7 User is offline   gatormac2112 

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 10:42 PM

Yes, thats an awesome tip. I wish it worked for other tools and scripts as it would be easier to simply "brush on" an effect rather than having to go through the tedious task of using the manual select tool, inverting and clearing. If you know how to do other effects other than Desaturating please share ;) I'm not up to speed on masking yet, so maybe that is an easier way.

Also, for bandwidth purposes maybe instead of displaying the entire original image you could just link to it.
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#8 User is offline   fencepost 

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 11:08 PM

One thing you can do to speed things up as far as doing the background is making a brush that is really large in size....ie a 200 pixels or more. That would only take a couple of brush strokes on an image this size. Image size would, of course, dictate brush size. Another way to do it is to use your rectangular selection tool and select big areas with it, then do a bucket fill with black on your upper layer. I just did a quick test and removed most of the outer areas in less than a minute.

You'll still have to manually extract the details you want, however.

As far as the picture, that was Ali's request. If he ok's moving it elsewhere, I'll modify it. :l:

Hope this helps.

Art
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#9 User is offline   Ali Imran 

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Posted 20 May 2005 - 11:41 PM

For sure, you may move it to where you like, I wanted the picture to be present for others who write tutorials, and may utilize without copyrights problems on web. I have taken few pictures of nature and will post soon.

regards
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#10 User is offline   fencepost 

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 05:12 PM

Can't believe I left out another technique to speed up removing the background. Grab the lasso tool and create a selection around the object you wish to leave colored. The selection doesn't have to be exact at all. As a matter of fact, I wouldn't try to get too close to the part you want to remain, because, if you're like me, the lasso tool can be a little unwieldy at times; I shake too much :w: Invert the selection and fill with black.

Art
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#11 User is offline   gymnart 

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Posted 26 May 2005 - 02:14 PM

That is neat! Looks as if you used the masking technique. I learned about that when following a Photoshop tutorial from deviantart.
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#12 User is offline   Luktar 

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Posted 08 June 2005 - 06:05 PM

i would have done it the other way around.. have the gray layer above the color layer and then remove inside the butterfly to get it colored..

thoughts?
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#13 User is offline   Scatropolis 

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Posted 22 June 2005 - 09:48 PM

I agree...if you have the bottom layer the colored original you'll always have htat to edit if you need.
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#14 User is offline   fencepost 

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Posted 23 June 2005 - 01:55 AM

It's all a matter of personal choice. Using a mask would have worked, as well as cutting out the moth with the paths tool.
There's a 100 ways to skin a cat. I was just providing a tutorial to show the use of the layer "color" mode.

A
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#15 User is offline   capnhud 

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Posted 29 August 2005 - 11:37 AM

So is there a more automated way to do selective coloring?
I know I'm in my own little world. But its ok. They know me HERE
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#16 User is offline   vibins 

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Posted 24 September 2005 - 02:15 AM

I used the quick mask method. I went into quickmask removed the red around the skater went back into normal mode and desaturised the selection.

Posted Image

I also think it looks kool like this. It looks like its been cut out of a magazine.

Posted Image
ADMIN EDIT : Footer larger than maximum size
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#17 User is offline   Pippen 

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Posted 25 April 2006 - 08:45 PM

Is it possible to be even more color selective? For example...the background is grey and the butterfly is colored.
can you select parts of the butterly to be greyed?

One guy did a skater, as you can see above. If I did that photo...I'd want the sweat shirt (Hoody) and shoes to be colored while the rest of him is greyed. Is this possible?

A detailed tut on this would be great. Thanks.

Pip
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#18 User is offline   sk8brder40 

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Posted 25 April 2006 - 09:52 PM

Nice tutorial. I went from this: Posted Image to this: Posted Image
Posted Image
Visit my website at sk8brder40.com
ADMIN: Please use single image in footer.
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#19 User is offline   coolsmartygirl 

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Posted 26 July 2006 - 10:24 PM

Posted Image

thanx for the tutorial. i have seen pictures like this around myspace and such, and i am glad i know how to do this too. And it was so easy too. The above picture is my first picture done :]
Posted Image
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#20 User is offline   Pixkid 

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 11:56 PM

Great tutorial. This one is on the actual Gimp website though, I already knew... well, here's my image, sorry it's so big!: Posted Image W
pixkid@macmini~$ open -a Gimp.app
bash: you want fries with that
pixkid@macmini~$ echo No thank you, I am on a diet.
bash: you make me feel unloved with your excuses
pixkid@macmini~$ echo What? Are you insinuating that I do not eat your food? When did shells ever execute commands relevant to cooking?
bash: shells duh ever think of seafood
pixkid@macmini~$ echo No fair, stop searching puns, you have Lynx and Google to use!
bash: ugh you humans are so annoying
bash: logout

[Process completed]
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