2.5D Parallax Animated Photo Tutorial (using Free Software)

I had been fiddling with creating these 2.5D parallax animated photos for quite a few years now, but there had recently been a neat post by Joe Fellows that brought it into the light again.

The reason I had originally played with the idea is part of a long, sad story involving my wedding and an out-of-focus camcorder that resulted in my not having any usable video of my wedding (in 2008). I did have all of the photographs, though. So as a present to my wife, I was going to re-create the wedding with these animated photos (I’m 99% sure she doesn't ever read my blog - so if anyone knows her don’t say anything! I can still make it a surprise!).

The rest of my GIMP tutorials can be found here:
Getting Around in GIMP

So I had been dabbling with creating these in my spare time over a few years, and it was really neat to see the work done by Joe Fellows for the World Wildlife Fund. Here is that video:


He followed that up with a great video walking through how he does it:



I'm writing here today to walk through the methods I had been using for a while to create the same effect, but entirely with Free/Open Source Software...

Getting Around in GIMP - Plug-ins and Scripts Management

I had written last week about building the latest G'MIC beta to test out the fancy-schmancy new patch-based inpainting algorithm that the team had cooked up. In the process of building it and testing it, I thought it might be useful for other GIMP users out there to briefly touch on the subject of installing and managing Script-Fu scripts and Plug-ins.

Plug-Ins/Scripts Folder Location

GIMP has a very handy feature that’s tucked away in the Preferences window, and that is the ability to have GIMP search for Plug-Ins and Scripts wherever you want to put them. You can access this through the Preferences:

Getting Around in GIMP - G'MIC Inpainting (Content Aware Fill)

One of the advantages of hanging around people smarter than me is that I get to see some really neat things as they are being developed. Lucky for me, +David Tschumperlé let’s me see interesting things that they are hacking on over at G'MIC.

Of course, if you’re reading me occasionally you’ll remember that last time I got a chance to work on something with G'MIC, we ended up making some fun film emulation presets. This time I’m not involved other than to play, and it’s really neat!

It is the latest work on the patch-based inpainting algorithm.

The rest of my GIMP tutorials can be found here:
Getting Around in GIMP
My previous look at using the Resynthesizer/Heal Selection plug-in:
Getting Around in GIMP - Heal Selection (Resynthesizer)

Libre Graphics Meeting 2014 in Leipzig, Germany (and a Workshop Announcement)

Ok, I’m sorry I’ve been so quiet! I’m not Missing in Action, I’ve just been busy with some other things...

As a matter of fact, here are those other things!

Libre Graphics Meeting

I’ve been helping out the Libre Graphics Meeting team where I can. If you’re not familiar with them, the Libre Graphics Meeting is the meeting opportunity for many open-source graphics related projects.

2014 Libre Grahpics Meeting Logo Header

This is the meeting where the hackers, designers, users, and developers of many of the most popular FLOSS graphics tools meet to share ideas and to showcase works. For many projects this is the only time that the teams can actually meet face to face to discuss new ideas and progress.

Personally I’ve been trying to help by writing/copyediting posts on the LGM website. So I haven’t had an opportunity to write here as much these paste few weeks.

If you’re reading this, please consider chipping in anything that you can to help bring these great FLOSS project teams together! Seriously, just a few dollars from each person can really, really make a difference. These are the people that are building tools that make what I do here possible, and the only way to get quality software that respects our freedoms.

Donate to the Libre Graphics Meeting Pledgie Campaign!
Click here to lend your support to:  Libre Graphics Meeting 2014 and make a donation at pledgie.com !

FL/OSS Tools in a Photographic Workflow

Sounds fancy doesn’t it? Well, not only should you donate to LGM if you can, but if you have the means you should also attend! There’s a good reason to!

I’m going to be conducting a workshop at the meeting on using FL/OSS tools in a photography workflow. I’ve got a two hour block where I’ll be having a photowalk with attendees to talk about photographic processes and maybe techniques, and then back to the meeting to discuss various methods of processing and editing the photographs using a variety of FL/OSS tools (RawTherapee, darktable, Hugin, LuminanceHDR, G’MIC, Imagemagick, and more!).

Of course, GIMP is missing from that list because I wanted to address them separately.

The GIMP team is graciously sponsoring me to attend LGM this year!

I’ve been slowly updating the tutorials on the GIMP website and attaching much more liberal licenses to them so they can be reused freely. (Yet another reason I’ve been unable to post new stuff here lately, but a good reason!). I was thinking that a look at my photographic retouching process using GIMP might be fun and helpful.

I tend to use many different software depending on what I need to do, but of course I always find myself in GIMP at the end... :)

Consider Attending LGM

So, if you’re able to - consider coming over to Leipzig, Germany April 2-5 to join us! The meeting is free to attend, and there will be many great things to see and learn about. For instance:

  • G’MIC
  • Yep, David Tschumperle (creator of G’MIC) will be in attendance along with Jérôme Boulanger! They are going to be giving a great overview of G’MIC along with some looks at the incredible filters available with the language (and how they can push these new filters so quickly out to the community due to a tight relationship with the artists that use it). I believe I’ll also be joining them in this presentation briefly to talk about the film emulation effects released last year.
  • Rolf Steinort / Meet the GIMP
  • I’ve heard from the man himself, Rolf (of Meet the GIMP of course), that he’ll also be attending this year! I’m going to try and get an autograph!
  • darktable
  • Tobias Ellinghaus will be bringing darktable to its first LGM as well! I know many people using free software for photography use darktable - so here’s a chance to interact with the great folks at darktable!
  • Magic Lantern
  • Yep, the folks that are able to bring amazing new powers to Canon cameras through a custom firmware will be attending their first LGM as well! In fact, if you bring your Canon camera with you, they will helpfully get you setup with the firmware while you’re there.

These are just a few of the many, many things that will be presented at this years LGM. There’s tons more, and as I get the time I’m updating the LGM website to showcase new sneak peeks at what’s to come.

Oh, and just to help remind you, don’t forget to donate a little something if you can:

Donate to the Libre Graphics Meeting Pledgie Campaign!
Click here to lend your support to:  Libre Graphics Meeting 2014 and make a donation at pledgie.com !

GIMP Magazine Issue 5 Released


The team over at GIMP Magazine have released their latest issue, and check out that handsome gentleman on the cover!

GIMP Magazine Cover Pat David
“I’m pretty sure there’s a lot more to life than being really, really, ridiculously good looking.”
Derek Zoolander

Yep, +Steve Czajka and crew have pushed out yet another great issue of the magazine, and I’m not just saying that because my ugly mug is gracing the cover. This issue has my portrait retouching tutorial with the wonderful Mairi, and a really neat tutorial for emulating the results of an old analog photographic process (really old), Gum over Palladium, by +Christopher Perez.  +Debi Dalio also reviews Tux Paint for kids!

Personally, I would have gone for a better looking cover model, like Mairi from the tutorial:

Mean Averaged Music Videos [G’MIC/Blender]

So I can’t leave well enough alone, as seen in my last post about mean averaging stuff. In that last post I had averaged entire music videos to see what the resulting images would look like.


This time around I took a different path. I wanted to demonstrate what exactly was visually happening when creating these averaged images. For that I turned to the experts (by experts, I mean David Tschumperlé), and this time did all of the image averaging in G’MIC. (So a great big Thank You! to David for putting up with me while I tried to describe what I wanted).

The reason is that I wanted to show the videos turning into the final mean averaged images in realtime, as the video played. For this, David was kind enough to write me a quick G’MIC script that would do the mean average for every frame in the video, and dump the total average for each frame one by one.

Getting Around in GIMP - Luminosity Masks Revisited


Brorfelde landscape by Stig Nygaard (cb)
After adding an aggressive curve along with a mid-tone luminosity mask.

I had previously written about adapting Tony Kuyper’s Luminosity Masks for GIMP. I won’t re-hash all of the details and theory here (just head back over to that post and brush up on them there), but rather I’d like to re-visit them using channels. Specifically to have another look at using the mid-tones mask to give a little pop to images.

The rest of my GIMP tutorials can be found here:
Getting Around in GIMP
Original tutorial on Luminosity Masks:
Getting Around in GIMP - Luminosity Masks