Saturday, March 7, 2009

A quick polaroid effect with the GIMP

That's just an outline - good thing I can use this blog to take notes rather than having this all stores in my little brain or in some obscure text files.

The idea is to create a polaroid effect with GIMP, like shown here. Many ideas are out to do this in photoshop, the work in GIMP is similar.

It's not as tricky as it sounds; some transparency issues are somewhat made easier in the meantime. So let's see

  1. Create a new image, here it's 300x300
  2. In the selection tool select rounded corners with 5px radius
  3. Copy the selection
  4. Paste as new image
  5. In the "Filters" menu, select Light and Shadow, then Drop Shadow. Make both offsets 5px. This filter creates the necessary Alpha layer - else it would take some work to do that!
  6. Lock pasted image and drop shadow layer (just for safety reasons, in case you want to move them around)
  7. Load the image you want to paste into the picture
  8. Rescale to 250 pixels by whatever it produces
  9. You might consider an "Unsharpen Mask" with 1 pixel
  10. Select all of the picture, copy it.
  11. Back to the frame: Paste as new layer
  12. Place the caption, maybe rotate the text layer
  13. Save as .gif
That's it, I guess

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