Gimp Interface Magic

Wallpapers 11 Gimp projects: unique effects, easily adaptable solutions, time-saving techniques and practical applications. The projects are fully customizable presented in an easy to follow format that takes you on a step-by-step ride to rediscover your creativity.
You can download a sample version of the book from here.
The full version of the book is available from Lulu.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Studies in Illumination I

The following explorations in illumination effects have been based on Faber Birren's ground-breaking research in color theory. Birren summarized some of his findings in a book called Color Perception in Art that was an instant success among artists and designers all over the world.

The study of the interaction of light and surfaces revealed a great deal of new information that was only intuitively understood before; these insights gave a new tool for artists and designers that became especially evident in the genre of Op art. The role of light and color in visual design are such important issues that I think every graphic artist should know about them; my hope is that the opensource art community will find these ideas useful.

The images below are black and white studies that I have recreated from the published examples by following closely the instructions of the author. The four figures illustrate the effects of normal illumination, dim illumination, atmospheric mist and luminosity. A matching series of color examples will follow shortly.

In the upcoming weeks and months, I will explore additional issues in color theory and composition that will further expand the current topic; so stay tuned.

Normal illumination: hues and values seem "genuine". The figure shows a range of gray shades from center white to black, placed on a white background. Brightness and contrast are maximum.

Dim illumination portrayed as black and white with five steps from white to deep gray. The background is dark gray. As the illumination grows dim all dim values blend together. Genuine colors don't appear, they become blackish and muted.

Atmospheric mist and aerial perspective is achieved by a series of grays including white.The background is light gray. As the chromatic colors become more distant they become more grayish.

Luminosity is achieved by similar techniques as atmospheric mist except that the background is medium gray.


The Sheep said...

Well, the book was revolutionary in eighties. Today the state of knowledge is a little better -- especially the scientific background for understanding color perception. There is a nice set of articles (still a little dated) on color available at

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