How To Create A Dual Lighting Effect with GIMP

How To Create A Dual Lighting Effect with GIMP 800 470 Nick Saporito

In this tutorial I’ll be demonstrating how to use GIMP to create a dual lighting effect where it appears as if the subject has colored lights shining on them. The colors I’ll be using in this demonstration are pink and blue.

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The following is just a brief overview of the steps taken to achieve this effect. For complete step-by-step instructions, please watch the tutorial video at the top of the page.

Dual Lighting Effect with GIMP

For this tutorial I’ll be using the following example photo…

Example photo

The first step is to create a duplicate of the layer and remove the saturation so that it is complete grayscale.

Grayscale duplicate

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Next, we’ll add a new blank layer on top and fill it with pink. For this demonstration I used HEX #ff5bba but any shade of pink should work.

Layer filled with pink

Now set the blend mode of the pink layer to Overlay, then create a new layer from visible. By now it should look something like this…

Overlay layer

Now we just have to repeat the same process, only using blue instead. I used HEX #039be5.

Blue layer

By now you should have one pink layer and one blue layer positioned on top of each other. The order doesn’t matter.

Now it’s time to blend the two layers together. To do that, we’ll be adding a layer mask and applying a gradient of black and white to reveal one half of the layer over the other.

This should result in one side being pink and the other side being blue.

Half and half colors

All we have to do now is make some adjustments to the color curves to make the final image look more refined and uniform. Refer to the video tutorial to see the exact adjustments to make.

Finished dual lighting effect

And that should do it for today’s tutorial. That is how you can create a dual lighting effect with GIMP. If you have any questions just leave a comment below. As always, thanks for watching!

Get Started with GIMP!

Want to learn more about how GIMP works? Check out The GIMP Series – a comprehensive collection of over 60 videos where I go over all of the major tools, features and function in GIMP and explain what they do, how they work, and why they’re useful.

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Nick Saporito

Designer, content creator, and the founder of LogosByNick.com — an educational media platform for learning about graphic design.

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