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Grokking The Gimp
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7.5.3 Blending

The remaining color mismatches at layer edges can be corrected using layer masks. The idea is to blend the edges by using a gradient in a layer mask. The technique of layer blending using a gradient in a layer mask is discussed in Section  4.3.3.

Figure  7.38(a)

  
Figure 7.38: Construction of a Gradient in a Layer Mask to Blend Away the Boundary Between Two Layers
Figure 7.38

shows the remaining color mismatch at the edge between layers A and B. Figure  7.38(b) shows a layer mask created for layer A. This mask is a black to white gradient where the black point is placed at the left edge of the mask and the white point slightly to the right of this. This layer mask has the effect of making the left side of layer A's boundary semi-transparent, letting layer B show through. The end result is the two layers are blended in this small band removing the visibility of the boundary. Figure  7.38(c) illustrates the Layers dialog showing that four of the five layers have had layer masks added. This makes one layer mask for each boundary.

Figure  7.39(a)

  
Figure 7.39: The Result of Blending Two Layers
Figure 7.39

shows, again, the boundary between layers A and B before blending. Figure  7.39(b) shows the result after blending. As you can see, the technique is very effective. However, some experimentation was necessary to find the correct width for the gradient blend.

Although the gradient blending trick works well in most cases, there are times when it is not appropriate for the entire boundary between two layers. In this case, parts of the boundary can be targeted for a blending gradient by using the Rectangle Select tool. This is necessary, for example, for the blend of layers D and E. Here, separate selections are made at layer D's left edge for the regions corresponding to the hardwood floor, the wainscoting, and upper wall areas. Separate gradient blends are produced for each one.

The layer mask produced by these separate gradients is shown in Figure  7.40(a).

  
Figure 7.40: Using the Rectangle Select Tool to Create a Custom Gradient Mask
Figure 7.40

Figure  7.40(b) shows the associated Layers dialog.

Grokking The Gimp
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