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GIMP Tutorial #14 – How to Create a Cool Glow Effect

For those who still don't know what is GIMP, I can tell you that it is a polished piece of freeware capable of complex tasks like photo retouching, image composition and image creation. This phenomenal free image editor is nowadays a serious competitor in the image manipulation market being a feasible option to other high priced pieces of software like Fireworks and Photoshop.
In this tutorial I'm going to show you how to use GIMP to create a cool glow effect to add to your images.

If you want to properly follow this tutorial you must have GIMP installed in your computer, for those who don't, you can just click on the “Download” button you'll find above and get your free full version of this free image editor. Once you have the installer stored on your folders launch it and the InstallIQTM manager will take you through the setup procedure.

To get started you need to create a new image and preferably set its background to a dark color you'll get something like this:

Now you need an object on the foreground for this example I'll use some text. For this you have to create a new layer and create the object there.

Next create a new layer and name it Glow, select the Rectangle Select Tool and make a rectangular selection that is slightly bigger than your object.

After that select white as the foreground color and fill the rectangle you've just created with this color using the Bucket Fill Tool.

Go to Select and click on None, and then go to Filters → Blur → Gaussian Blur and in the dialog that pops up enter 30 as horizontal and vertical Blur Radius values,

click OK and behold!!

You can play with the colors and the Gaussian Blur radius to achieve different effects.

Final Words

Now you can add really nice glow effects to your images using GIMP. It's kind of difficult to believe that such a powerful image editor is just for free, but fortunately it's true, GIMP is and will always be a totally free image editor. So let your imagination fly free (and for free) with GIMP, download it now just by clicking on the “Download Now” link below.

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