Create a Surreal Piece of Art

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This tutorial is directed towards beginners and thus will go into significant detail on how to accomplish each step. This tutorial was made specifically for Gimp 2.6.4.

Hello and welcome to my Gimp tutorial. My name is Jacob Philpott and I am a graphic designer.I hope you enjoy my tutorial! In this tutorial I will show you how to create this image from scratch:

We will use several techniques including some filters and these tools:

In case at any point you have trouble finding any of the Dialogs that I refer to in the tutorial, you can find all of them by accessing this menu:

Step 1

First create a new image. I made mine 500x647px at 300ppi. Next create a new transparent layer. Use the Paths Tool and create a simple path:

Tip: click and drag from the ruler markers on the side of the image to create guidelines to place the dots exactly where you want them.

Step 2

Go to the Paintbrush Tool and select this brush and these settings:

Access the Brushes Dialog (Shift+Ctrl+B by default) and on the brush, make the spacing anywhere from 5 to 9.

Step 3

Open the Paths Dialog and right click on the 'Unnamed' path. Select "Stroke Path" with these settings:

Step 4

Go to Filters>Distorts>Polar Coordinates and use these settings:

Step 5

Go to Filters>Distorts>Wind and use these settings:

Step 6

Repeat the Polar Coordinates filter but use these settings this time:

Step 7

Create a new transparent layer. Using the Ellipse Select Tool, create a circle selection that looks like it naturally fits in the bottom curve of the path:

Tip: on the Tool Option dialog, make sure the "Fixed: Aspect ratio" is checked and set to 1:1 in order to get a perfect circle.

Step 8

Next, select the Blend Tool with these settings:

Click and drag from the top left of the circle selection towards the bottom right of the selection to create a gradient. Finally, deselect the circle by going to Select>None.

Step 9

On the Layers Dialog, move the layer with the circle below the path layer. Zoom in closely and use the Eraser Tool to erase the part of the path that should be behind the circle.

Step 10

Go to the background layer and with the Blend Tool, create a simple gradient from top left to bottom right.

Step 11

Hide the background layer and then go to Edit>Copy Visible and then Edit>Paste. On the Layers Dialog right click on the "Floating Selection" and click "New Layer". Finally, hide the two visible layers and reveal the background layer.\par

Step 12

Duplicate the top layer a couple times. Resize and move the other layers around to create some depth.

Tip: use Gaussian Blur to blur layers that are far away to increase the idea of depth in the image.

Step 13

Now for a little color. Go to Edit>Copy Visible and then Edit>Paste. On the layers dialog, right click on the "Floating Selection" and click "New Layer". Change the foreground color to #331900 and make sure the background color is white. Go to Colors>Map>Gradient Map. Change the layer mode to "Overlay".

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