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How to create snowflake in GIMP tutorial

Updated on December 14, 2012
Snowflakes created using GIMP
Snowflakes created using GIMP

As Christmas time is near, I thought I would show you how to create your very own snowflakes in GIMP. The great thing about it is that every snow flake is unique and so can be your snowflakes.

You can download GIMP from here.

Open GIMP and create a new file going to File / New. I chose 600 x 600 px size.

Next, to make our life easier, we need to create guides to know there exactly is the middle of the layer.

Go to Image / Guides / New guide (by Percent), choose Vertical and press OK. Next do the same, but choose Horizontal and click OK. If no lines appeared on your layer, go to View / Show Guides.

Make a new transparent layer by going to Layer / New Layer / Transparent.

Now take 100% hardness brush, set size to 10 and make a line as shown in fig 1.

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

Tip: To create a perfectly straight line, start from pointing brush to the middle of the guides, then press down Shift key and pull brush up. Still holding down Shift key, click on brush.

Now add lines as shown in fig 2.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2

Tip: First click with brush once to the place you want to start your line, then do as mentioned above.

Duplicate the layer with lines by clicking Ctrl +Shift +D, next flip it horizontally by going to Layer / Transform / Flip horizontally.

Click on the top layer (flipped one), then right click, choose Merge down see fig 3.

Fig. 3
Fig. 3

Duplicate top layer, then flip it vertically by going to Layer / Transform / Vertically.

Right click on the top layer, Merge down see fig 4.

Fig. 4
Fig. 4

Duplicate top layer, then go to Layer / Transform / Rotate 90° clockwise see fig 5.

Fig. 5
Fig. 5

Duplicate top layer, now go to Tools / Transform Tool / Rotate. Set Angle to 45 and press OK see fig 6.

Fig. 6
Fig. 6

Duplicate top layer, then go to Layer / Transform / Horizontally see fig 7.

Fig. 7
Fig. 7

If you want to make a brush from this, just flatten the image by going to Image / Flatten image and after follow my instructions starting from point # 13 in this tutorial.

If you want to add colour to your snowflake, you need to follow my steps below:

Click on background layer and make it invisible (click the eye icon once).

Go to Image / Merge Visible Layers / Merge.

Now you can make your background visible again.

Next to the top layer is a little brush and a small square called “Lock alpha channel”, click on it, it will make sure that when you add colour it will be only on the snowflake.

There is two ways to add colour to snowflake:

1. Choose your desired colour and set it as Foreground, then select Bucket fill tool and click somewhere on the snowflake see fig 8.

Fig. 8
Fig. 8

2. Or set your Foreground colour to the colour of your choice and background to white.

Now select Blend Tool, set Gradient to FG to BG (RGB), shape: Radial see fig 9. I made background black to make it easier for you to see the effect.

Fig. 9
Fig. 9

There you are, now you know how to create your own snowflakes.


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    • Dina Blaszczak profile imageAUTHOR

      Dina Blaszczak 

      7 years ago from Poland

      @ joanveronica My big pleasure! :))) If you have any questions when you are working with these tutorials, just ask, I'm glad to help :)

    • joanveronica profile image

      Joan Veronica Robertson 

      7 years ago from Concepcion, Chile

      OOOHHH! Another GIMP tutorial! This is wonderful! Voted Up and ABI, and will add to my collection! Someday soon I will be able to sit down and put all this together, I really need to do that.

      Thanks again and have a good day!


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