Underdogs

Digital Coloring for Comics GIMP Edition Part 3

gimptutorial3

This tutorial will instruct you on how to color lineart made from scans within GIMP 2.8.

If you’d like a printable version of this tutorial for your classroom or for personal use, click here!

To check out our article about GIMP, click here!

Required materials:

GIMP 2.8

Save for Web plugin installed to GIMP

The Tutorial:

1. Now, finally, we’re getting to the coloring part of the series of tutorials! This is a pretty basic part. Open your inks file.

3TUT1

2. Select the layers panel (on the right side of your workspace)
3TUT2

3. If it isn’t open, because you accidentally closed it or something, click “Windows>Dockable Dialogs>Layers” or use the shortcut “Ctrl+L” for a PC, “Command+L” on a MAC.
3TUT3

4. Within the layers palette, create a new layer by clicking on the blank page icon at the bottom of the layers palette.
3TUT4

5. A new layer option box will come up. Make sure you set the layer to “transparency” before clicking “ok”
3TUT5

6. Now go back to the layers palette. Make sure that the new layer is above the line art layer by dragging it above. Select the blank layer.
3TUT6

7. Double click it and rename it “colors”
3TUT7

8. Now, under “Mode,” at the top of the layers palette, select “Multiply”
3TUT8

9. Click “File>Save as”
3TUT9

10. Making sure you are in the original folder you were working in, name the new save file “Filename_colors.xcf” (“.xcf” is the GIMP editable file, remember?). Then click “Save”.
3TUT10

11. Select the “Zoom Tool” (magnifying glass) and select the first area you want to color. You can select a specific area of your art piece by clicking, holding down, and dragging over that area with the magnifying glass.  In this case, I am selecting the girl’s hair to color first, so I have selected her head.
3TUT11

12. Now you can select the “free select” tool by clicking on it from within the toolbox, or by clicking quick key “F” on your keyboard.
3TUT12

13. Now start selecting the area you want to color. I would suggest selecting from within the outlines so that the colors extend out beneath the edges of the art. This reduces the likelihood of missed space in the coloring. When you connect the original point where you started the selection with the end of your selection, your selection with generate.
3TUT13-13TUT13 3TUT13-3

14. Within the toolbox, select the paint bucket tool.
3TUT14

15. At the bottom of the toolbox, double click on the foreground color to change the color you will be using.
3TUT15

16. From within the color selector choose the color you would like to color the selection in with.
3TUT16

17. Within your selection, making sure you are within the “Colors” layer, click on the selection to drop the color in.
3TUT17

18. Now repeat steps 11-15 this for all of the selections you can possibly make in your drawing to color it in.
3TUT18

19. Before you finish, make sure that you click “File>save”
3TUT19

20. Now, to finalize the image for print settings, click “File>export”
3TUT20

21. In the options box that pops up, name the file “YourFilename_FINAL_PRINT” (This is to indicate that this file is optimized for printing. It is a large file at this point, so I wouldn’t try and use it for anything else.) Click “Select File Type” and choose “.jpeg” and then click export.
3TUT21

22. Click “Image>Scale Image”
3TUT22

23. In the scale image options box, within the width field, choose a number under 1000 (which represents pixels) and then hit tab on your keyboard and the height should change as well. Now go to the “X Resolution” and change the number from “600” to “100” and click tab again, the Y resolution should change. Then click scale.
3TUT23

24. Using the handy dandy, “Save for Web” plugin for GIMP, I am going to now save my file so that it works for web sharing faster and easier. (You will need this plugin for that step, so if you don’t have it installed, take a minute to do so now)

Click “File>Save for Web”
3TUT24

25. In the “Save for Web” options box make sure the “jpeg” setting is selected. Adjust the “Quality” and “Smoothing” options keeping an eye on the “File Size” indicator. (It should be under 100kb for web use) then click “Save”
3TUT25

26. Within the “Save image” options box, name the file something like “filename_final_forweb.jpg” to indicate it is for web usage. Then click save.3TUT26

27. Now you can click out of GIMP. Don’t save anything at this point because the scaled image might accidentally override the settings on your large print file.

You are done!

 

 
gimptutorial1

gimptutorial2

 

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5 Responses to “Digital Coloring for Comics GIMP Edition Part 3”

  1. Darija

    I can’t believe it! After so many tutorials I came to this easy-to-understand one. You don’t need any prior knowledge of gimp. Thanks a lot!

    Reply
  2. Ella

    GIMP has been so daunting for such a long time, this tutorial really helped express the simplicity of it, especially with layers. Thanks for sharing your knowledge! Do you have or know of other tutorials that center around more advanced techniques like shading?

    Thanks again! 🙂

    Reply
    • Kevin Cullen

      Glad the tutorial helped! Shading is definitely a tricky bugger and does take some advanced knowledge of Gimp to pull off effectively. I’ll see if I can find some of the more advanced tutorials on the internet and add them to our resource database!

      Reply
  3. Archsider

    After going through all the three, this is the best Gimp tutorial for comics in my opinion.

    Reply

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