Open your choice of Start Image onto GIMP’s workspace - File then Open - Ctrl then O.
Ensure the Layers and the Undo History Palettes are visible, and then drag them into position over your workspace - (Windows then Dockable Dialogues - then click Layers and Undo History).
Brush Palette Note
To bring up the Brushes Palette, from the top menu, choose Windows then choose Dockable Dialogues and then choose Brushes.
2/ Add An Alpha Channel
Now, from the Layers Palette: right-click over the Background Layer and from the subsequent drop-down list, click Add Alpha Channel. Your Layers Palette and image will not change their appearance.
Before saving an object as a Brush, it needs to have a Transparent Background. I am going to demonstrate how to remove the 2CV’s background using the Fuzzy Select Tool. If you already know how to do this, then Proceed to my Create A Brush Chapter Here. If not, my chapters below demonstrate how to remove the 2CV’s background.
Now, from the left-side Toolbox, activate the Fuzzy Select Tool.
And from the left-side Options Box, set the following Add to current selection Mode and Threshold 22 settings.
The settings above are perfect for the image I am working with. However, when working with your photo object, it’s important to experiment with the Fuzzy Select settings, and discover a combination of settings that works best for your photograph’s requirements.
You are looking to isolate just the 2CV with a Selection Marquee, therefore,
left-click once outside the 2CV - as illustrated below.
Then left-click inside each window to isolate them with a Selection Marquee - as illustrated below.
You will find this step easier if you Zoom into your work by pressings the Shift Key and the Plus Key together. Tapping the Minus Key Zooms out of your image.
Now, from the top menu, choose Select then choose Grow. And from the subsequent Grow Selection dialogue box, set a Grow selection by value of 1, and then click OK.
Then right-click over the 2CV, and from the subsequent drop-down list choose Select and then choose Feather. Now, from the subsequent Feather Selection box, enter a Feather Selection by value of 1, and then click OK.
Now, from the top menu, choose Edit and then choose Clear. Alternatively, tap the Delete Key.
Then from the top menu, choose Select then choose None.
8/ Optional Remove Colour
From the top menu, choose Colours then choose Desaturate. And from the subsequent Desaturate dialogue box, enter settings of your choice, and then click OK.
Levels Note (Improve Your Image’s Contrast)
To create a sharper black and white contrast; from the top menu, choose Colours then choose Levels. Now, from the subsequent Levels dialogue box, move the Black Point Slider a little to the Right. And then move the White Point Slider a little to the Left, and then click OK.
Congratulations, your transparent object can now be saved as a Brush.
To preserve your image’s Transparent Background, it’s a good idea to save it as a XCF File.
9/ Save The Brush To GIMP’s Brushes Folder
To save your transparent object as a Brush, from the top menu, choose File and then choose Save As. And from the subsequent Save Image dialogue box, click open the Select File Type menu, and from the subsequent drop-down list, click GIMP brush. (Don’t click OK).
Then navigate to and open GIMP’s Brushes Folder; (Program Files, then
GIMP-2.0 then share then gimp then 2.0 the brushes). After you have navigated to and opened GIMPs brushes folder, click Save - as illustrated below.
Now, from the subsequent Save as Brush dialogue box, enter a unique name for your Brush (and change the Spacing if you wish), and then click Save.
Congratulations, you have successfully created and saved your Custom Brush and it is ready to apply.
To see your new Brush, (from the foot of the Brushes Palette) click the Refresh tab.
Then activate your newly created Brush by clicking its icon.
Your Brush is now ready to apply, in the usual manner. My tutorial Here demonstrates how to apply Brushes.
Reapplying the Brush will darken its coverage
You can quickly Resize your Brush by tapping the Bracket Keys.
Colourise Your Brush Application (Gradient Colourising Here)
To colourise your brush application. From the top menu, choose Colours then choose Colourise. Now, from the subsequent dialogue box, experiment with the Hue and Saturation sliders until you see a colour you like the look of, and then click OK.
Now you are more familiar with this technique, you can have lots of fun creating personalised Brushes from Photo Objects or Photographs. Remember, any object that has Transparent Background can be saved as a Brush.
Final Note (Back Up Your Custom Brushes)
Your Brush has been saved to GIMP’s Brushes Folder; however, it’s always good practice to backup GIMP’s Brushes. Backing up this folder preserves your newly created brushes should you need to reinstall your operating system .
Wendi E. M. Scarth. Top of Page.