Tutorial: simulate depth of field

Published by TheJoe on

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes


This article was published more than a year ago, there may have been developments.
Please take this into account.

In short tutorial for Gimp today we see how to simulate the depth of field in a photo. Often with modern compact digital cameras automatic settings focus is the subject that background, making everything clearly visible. This can result in a decrease of the charm of the picture. Today's tutorial shows how blurry the parts that make “the environment“.

We begin to open up a nice picture (eye licensing) I'll take from the usual Flickr account. Now I use a landscape, but it can also work with individuals, the important thing is that there is the “outline“.

This landscape photo taken in Monaco can only blur from the middle down, the subject is in the background (The Frauenkirche with the two towers on the left and the neo-Gothic clock tower on the right). The houses in the foreground are our frame. Let's see how.

First, after opening our photos duplicate the layer.

Then we apply a layer mask to the newly created layer.

The layer mask acts as a kind of opaque sheet superimposed on the level. The colored part of white will opaque, that Black will transparent.

Now we make it invisible level “Background” with the appropriate button “” and start working on the layer mask.

First, if they are not, we select the white come foreground color and the Black come background color, and immediately after select the instrument “Gradient“.

Look here:  Tutorial: play with gradients Gimp

Then, holding “Ctrlwe apply the gradient with the settings that carry.

Part of the image will be hidden by the layer mask.

At this point rehabilitate the background, clicking again on the eye relative to the background in the Layers dialog (), select the levelBackground” and the sfochiamo. I set the Gaussian blur (“Filters” – “Blur“- “Gaussian“) with a radius of 3 pixel.

And the result is what we have already seen to top.


I keep this blog as a hobby by 2009. I am passionate about graphic, technology, software Open Source. Among my articles will be easy to find music, and some personal thoughts, but I prefer the direct line of the blog mainly to technology. For more information contact me.


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