Gimp Tutorial: Awesome Bokeh Effect in Gimp

It was fun to to follow Abduzeedo tutorial for making bokeh digital effect in Photoshop (i'm using photoshop and gimp) and i really excited when i managed to do similiar effect in Gimp. So i decided to make a Gimp tut for this's been over a months since my last tutorial and i think after this i'll make more Gimp tuts..Click More Inside The Post to read the tutorial.

Gimp Digital Bokeh

P/s: This tutorial has been converted from the original Photoshop tutorial into Gimp. The original Photoshop tutorial can be found HERE in Abduzeedo site.

Before you try this tutorial,please download my Eclipse brush where i made it by myself. You can download the brush by click HERE. After download it, paste the brush to Gimp folder. And i'm using Gimp 2.6 for this one.

P/S : Click the image for larger view.

Create new document. I'll used 1600 x 1200. Fill the background with blackcolour .

Then create new layer.I renamed it as dark violet.

Choose a dark purple. I'm using #b10993.

Select gradient tool, Radial for the shape and low the opacity to 50. Click the image for larger view.

Now create a new layer and i renamed it as eclipse.

Select the brush tool. and I'll using my Eclipse brush. Use white color for the brush.Then Select brush dynamic options and for the values use the image below.

Now we'll paint some ellipses at the eclipse layer.

Go to Filters>Blur>Gaussian Blur. For this first layer use 40 pixels for the Horizontal and 40 pixels for the Vertical.

Create another layer ( I named it eclipse 2 ) and start painting again.

Go to Filters>Blur>Gaussian Blur. For this second layer use 10 pixels for the Horizontal and 10 pixels for the Vertical

Create another layer and repeat the previous step, this time however i'll Apply the Gaussian Blur to this layer as well, but use only 1 pixel for the Radius.

And then create a new layer and i named it as Clouds.Fill it with white. Go to Render>Clouds>Different Clouds.and apply to the layer. I use 4 for the Detail, Randomize and Tileable.After that changes the layer mod to Overlay.

Create another layer and named it gradient.

Using the gardient tools select Full Saturation Spectrum Gradient , 100 for the opacity and Linear for the shape.

Apply the gradient to the layer. Change the layer mod to Overlay.U'll see a nice effect there.

Go to layer eclipse 3 and change the layer mod to Grain merge.

Last,go to layer 2 and change the layer mod to Hard Light



Below is my result using Photoshop..You will noticed that Gimp is a great free editing software ever because it can achieve almost the same as Photoshop result.

hope u like it..i take no credit of this awesome all to Fabio Sasso for the inspiring idea.

I also included the Xcf file.
Click here to download the Xcf file used for this tutorial




46 Responses to "Gimp Tutorial: Awesome Bokeh Effect in Gimp"

Anonymous said... October 15, 2008 at 10:25 PM

Hey, This is really cool. I like my outcome, its now my wallpaper.

Starlight86 said... October 16, 2008 at 1:42 PM

Great..glad u like it..:D Thanks for the comment.

Anonymous said... October 17, 2008 at 10:19 AM

Nice work mate !

Starlight86 said... October 17, 2008 at 10:20 AM

Thanks you Gimper..:D

Anonymous said... October 20, 2008 at 9:44 AM

This tutorial is awesome :O The gaussian blur to add depth, it's so basic yet so genius. The photoshop version looks hawt as well, photoshop always has this touch of proffesionality over GIMP =/ But it's not worth the money since GIMP gets so close :D
Anyway i'll keep an eye on this blog for sure :O

Anonymous said... October 20, 2008 at 12:57 PM

I'm learing to use GIMP now :D and this is great tutorial :D thanks. I waiting for your next. It's look cool :))

Have Fun!

feathervane said... October 20, 2008 at 1:28 PM

I've noticed that the PS output was a little bit smoother compared to GIMP's. Was it intended? But over all this tutorial is really really great. Keep up the good work. ^

Starlight86 said... October 22, 2008 at 3:32 AM

thanks for the comment,i'll do my best to produce more gimp tutorial.

Anonymous said... October 26, 2008 at 7:39 AM

thank you so much, so beautiful !

Starlight86 said... October 26, 2008 at 7:50 AM

you are welcome..:)

Anonymous said... November 2, 2008 at 6:06 AM

Very cool GIMP effect! Thanks!

Anonymous said... November 3, 2008 at 5:37 AM

I cant seem to get the brush you made to work on my GIMP... i use GIMP 2.6 but i just can't make it work... a little help here pls...

Anonymous said... November 4, 2008 at 2:50 AM


Starlight86 said... November 4, 2008 at 5:01 AM

helo,sory for the late reply because this few day i've been busy..

try to download again the is the new link..

then, paste it in Gimp folder, if u using windows,paste it in C:\Program Files\GIMP-2.0\share\gimp\2.0\brushes..

and then restart F8(brush option) and then refresh brush..

i hope this solve your problem..

Anonymous said... November 5, 2008 at 12:22 AM

i thought .abr brushes are for Photoshop....aren't they?

Starlight86 said... November 5, 2008 at 1:11 AM's photoshop brush..but Gimp can read them..
that is the advantage of Gimp where it can read .abr brush meanwhile photoshop can't read the .gbr with my bokeh brush..u can use it for Gimp and Photoshop..

btw i use both of the software..:D

Anonymous said... November 5, 2008 at 3:00 AM

Oh ok it works now...

Starlight86 said... November 5, 2008 at 5:27 AM


Anonymous said... November 8, 2008 at 3:37 PM

Very helpful, thanks for the tutorial!

Anonymous said... November 11, 2008 at 3:07 AM

Hey can GIMP read Paint Shop Pro brushes???

im just wondering coz i saw some nice looking PSP brushes and i would like to know if GIMP can read PSP brushes.....

Starlight86 said... November 22, 2008 at 7:56 AM

idk but i'll check it for you..

Anonymous said... November 23, 2008 at 1:00 AM

nice job man

Starlight86 said... December 3, 2008 at 8:13 PM

thanks you..:)

Anonymous said... December 23, 2008 at 10:25 AM

good job!!

za12th said... January 8, 2009 at 7:39 PM

very nice tutorial...i like it!

Anonymous said... February 22, 2009 at 7:30 AM

Hi. I'm from Polish Forum of Gimp Users I have a question: Can I translate this tutorial? Of course I will add a link to Your page.

Starlight86 said... February 23, 2009 at 1:34 AM

Okay, u can translate it as long you link back to this blog.


Danni said... April 24, 2009 at 9:47 PM

Awesome tutorial! I don't have GIMP or Photoshop so I tried doing that in Paintshop Pro and i succeeded :) I kinda followed your GIMP tutorial but a few changes are made because there are no brush tool that does the same thing in GIMP in Paintshop. Thank you for this tutorial!

Anonymous said... April 29, 2009 at 5:18 AM

Thanks a lot! Very nice tutorial. I have just Gimp. So I have been looking for such tutorial long time.

feathervane said... May 3, 2009 at 3:48 AM

Thank you again for the tutorial. Here's my output.

Starlight86 said... May 5, 2009 at 10:52 AM


nice result!

Kimberly said... May 7, 2009 at 6:39 PM
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kimberly said... May 7, 2009 at 10:21 PM

Thanks this is great.

Starlight86 said... May 7, 2009 at 11:42 PM

:) tq

giemell said... May 28, 2009 at 7:06 PM

i'm finish downloading the brush. but i don't know how to put it on gimp. please please please email me how...:(
my email address is..
please, i'm begging you teach me.....

Anonymous said... June 1, 2009 at 8:17 PM

I use gimp and I love it, but I have to say that photoshop results are really much better, less "amateur"!

Miripi said... June 12, 2009 at 3:27 AM

I love it! I have now four friends with my result like a wallpaper in their desktops.


Javier Piedra said... June 21, 2009 at 8:16 AM

Thank you so much for this tutorial.

It's beatiful! Thank you from Spain!

Dezi said... October 20, 2009 at 9:24 PM

This is a really awesome tutorial :D I think the GIMP one looks better then the Photoshop one, it looks more lively, and purty *-*

Cayla-sama said... August 27, 2010 at 5:31 PM

This is really awesome! thnx for this!

kang said... January 23, 2011 at 6:01 AM

this is very useful for beginner, i think, its will make a gimp user more interest with this gimp tutorial....check on of my tutorials here cool gimp tutorial

kadume92 said... April 14, 2011 at 6:55 PM

ohh really thanks 4all!from Mexico, it was easy, just one question, how could I Import your brush?.

however, thanks.

Bose said... January 4, 2012 at 10:53 AM

Such beautiful inspiration!! Love your site!
Resume Template

VerteBien said... May 11, 2012 at 11:44 PM

Genial man...estuve horas tratando de hacer este pincel...queda buenisimo !!! saludos y THX, from Argentina !!!

Anonymous said... September 28, 2012 at 1:19 AM

Thanks for this great tutorial. I've posted my attempt in my teeny tiny blog. And I've back linked to this post.

apoorv said... April 11, 2013 at 3:43 AM

I am unable to download the brush. What could be the reasons? Please help.

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