ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Create a Puzzle Out of Any Picture Using GIMP

Updated on November 29, 2014


Puzzle effect
Puzzle effect

Open GIMP and select File > New. In the Create a New Image dialogue, you'll want to select the Width and Height of the image that you would like to use to create the puzzle. In my case, I am using this image with the dimensions of 1024 by 768. When you have finished entering the Width & Height, select OK.

Open the picture you'd like to use in GIMP. Once you open the image, you'll notice that there are now two separate windows open in GIMP (window with your preferred image for use in this tutorial). Go to the second one. In that second window, in its menu, select Edit > Copy.

At this point, you may close the second window. In GIMP's menu, select Layer > New Layer. In the New Layer dialogue, just click OK. Go back to GIMP's menu, and select Edit > Paste. Your image should paste nicely on the canvas so that all the white background disappears.

Now, we want to go to Filters > Render > Patterns > Jigsaw. In the Jigsaw dialogue, select 3 for both Horizontal and Vertical and, under Bevel Edges, set the width to 5 and click OK.

Puzzle effect added
Puzzle effect added

Create a new layer. Select the Paths Tool in GIMP's Toolbox. You'll want to zoom into your canvas. The quickest way to do this is press and hold the Ctrl key on your keyboard and then use the scroll function on your mouse to zoom in or out. Zoom in to, at least, 300%. In case you might be new with GIMP, you can check your scroll progress by looking at GIMP's canvas dialogue towards the very bottom - in the status bar.

Zoomed 300 percent
Zoomed 300 percent

What we're going to do is follow a path around every border of our puzzle effect one square at a time.

Path started
Path started

Each time you click your mouse on an area of GIMP's canvas, along the path of the borders, you add an "anchor". Don't be so worried about getting the paths too close to each other. And, where the borders run straight, you should only need to add an anchor at the start and end.

When you get to the last anchor, connect to the first one by clicking and holding Ctrl on your keyboard and clicking on the first anchor.

Connect last anchor
Connect last anchor

Once you have connected the anchors, click the Selection from Path button in GIMP's Toolbox.

Path selected
Path selected

Select the Foreground and background colors box in GIMP's Toolbox, and select the hex color of 9f9f9f and then select the Bucket Fill Tool. After that, click inside this selection we just created to fill it with that color. Now, divide the image up into sections and do the same thing with all the borders - creating puzzle sections. But be sure you create a new layer for every puzzle piece.

Selection painted
Selection painted

At this point, I have all my selections filled with the color 9f9f9f.

Entire puzzle filled
Entire puzzle filled

Now, I'm going to show you how to turn this puzzle into the effect of being put together - turn it into a video. Go to GIMP's menu and select Windows > Recently Closed Docks > Layers, Channels, Paths, Undo. In the Layers dialogue, starting with layer #1, turn off visibility by clicking on its eye icon. Once you have visibility turned off for that layer, close the Layers, Channels, Paths, Undo dialogue and create a screenshot (or print screen) for that layer.

With the screenshot created, use your favorite image manipulation program to create the image for each of these layers. I used the Windows program Paint - by opening the program and choosing Paste.

Do this with every layer until you have a screen shot for every layer created. Once completed, use your favorite program - such as Windows Live Movie Maker and piece the puzzle sections together to create a video. In my case, I used this program I have called PowerDirector to create my video.

Final Video

Your Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)