December 11, 2009

9

Swirly Christmas Tree

In this tutorial, I’ll show you how to make a cool swirly Christmas Tree in GIMP!

Swirly Christmas Tree

Swirly Christmas Tree

1. Start by opening GIMP with these settings:

  • 1200 x 1600
  • 300 or 480 dpi
  • Transparency
Create a New Document

Create a New Document

2. Making a background

  • Create a blue/black background with the Gradient Tool, however later I used Red!
  • Settings: FG: Dark Blue BG: Black, Radial, stroke as shown, top to bottom:
Making a background

Making a background

3. Path Tool

  • Create a new layer ‘Tree’
  • This may take a while to produce, but follow my dots as a guide!
  • Use the Path Tool to make something like mine:
  • Use the square ends to stretch each section:
Path Tool

Path Tool

4. Stroke Path Style

  • Then select Stroke Path (on the Paint Brush sidebar).
  • Before: Make sure you’ve selected your FG colour: Green and Brush: Standard.
Stroke Path Style

Stroke Path Style

5. Saturation and Lightness

  • You might like to increase the saturation and lightness!
  • Go, Colors –> Hue-Saturation:
Saturation and Lightness

Saturation and Lightness

6. Dodging and Burning

  • Then grab the Brush Tool with the following settings:
  • Mode: Hard Light, Circle(11), Scale 10
Dodging and Burning

Dodging and Burning

7. Duplicate ‘Tree’

  • Now, duplicate your ‘Tree‘ layer:
  • Move the new layer slightly, like below:
Duplicate 'Tree'

Duplicate 'Tree'

7b. Repeat

  • Repeat the above step a few times (about 5 times):
Repeat

Repeat

8. Merge Layers

  • Merge the Tree layers down:
  • Or deselect/hide the others and Merge All Visible:
Merge Layers

Merge Layers

You can do the next steps, 1, 2 and 3 or skip them and go to the next set of steps!

1. Selection to Path

  • On the ‘Tree‘ layer and with the Path Tool selected (might have to click somewhere on the layer):
  • Now, go Select –> To Path:
Selection to Path

Selection to Path

2. Stroke Path

  • Then select Stroke Path (on the Toolbar/Sidebar):
  • With FG: Gold!
Stroke Path

Stroke Path

3. Hue-Saturation

  • You might like to change the Hue, lightness, or saturation:
  • I increased the Lightness and Hue:
Hue-Saturation

Hue-Saturation

9. Highlighting

  • Use the following settings with the Brush Tool, and make a lighting effect:
  • Settings: Yellow (bright), Circle Fuzzy (19), Opacity 15, Scale 10:
  • Stroke around the shape of the Tree:
Highlighting

Highlighting

10. Glitter

  • Use the Brush Tool with the settings as shown, and lightly paint over the tree:
  • Settings: Yellow (bright), Circle Fuzzy (19), Opacity 15, Scale 1, Brush Dynamics: Hardness: Random, Apply Jitter 3:
  • Stroke around the shape of the Tree:
Glitter

Glitter

11. Star

  • Download: Add a yellow star using this brush set: http://duskblue.deviantart.com/art/GIMP-Brushes-Stars-4225644
  • Put brush in your brushes folder (C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\share\gimp\2.0\brushes)
  • Then add a very simple branch structure using the Lasso Tool and a Brown colour! (Optional)
  • I changed my background colour to Red, you can too if you left the Background layer!
Star

Star

That’s It!

More Christmas Tutorials

Christmas Tree

Christmas Bauble

Christmas Wallpaper

Christmas Brushes – Freebies

Christmas & New Year Wallpaper

Christmas Card and Wallpaper

Christmas Photography

I was inspired by this Photoshop tutorial here: http://www.adobetutorialz.com/articles/3022/1/Merry-Swirly-Christmas-Tree.

Please comment below if you have any questions and I’ll answer them ASAP!

All images on this site are copyrighted – All Rights Reserved.

Written by Mike

Michael Scott is the publisher and photographer behind Scott Photographics! He is very passionate about his photography and enjoys sharing the best of his experiences for others to enjoy too! Contact Mike via email!
Read more from Featured, Gimp, Tutorials
9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Dec 12 2011

    Thanks Breezy for the feedback – you’re quite right there is no Pen Tool only the Path Tool!

    Cheers,

    Mike

  2. Dec 11 2011

    This is a great tutorial for the novice.

    I am using GIMP 2.6.10 and there is no “to path” unless I first select “from path.” And there is a pencil tool and an ink tool but no Pen Tool.

    Thanks!

  3. Dec 22 2010

    Sorry for the late reply, you may have to Select the Pen Tool for the To Path to be selectable!

    If this doesn’t work let me know via a comment or email and I’ll have another look!

    Cheers,

    Mike

  4. XmasCard
    Dec 19 2010

    This tutorial is okay. Not the greatest. I still can’t access the “To Path” function — thus resulting in a crappier card.

  5. May 23 2010

    Lots of Good information in your posting, I bookmarked your blog post so I can visit again in the near future, Cheers :)

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

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  3. How to make a simple Christmas Card and Wallpaper in Photoshop | Scott Photographics | Free Photography, GIMP & Photoshop Tutorials
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