In this instructable I will show you how to Colorize a black and white photo with a splash of color using GIMP. For those who don't know GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) is a freely distributed program for such tasks as photo retouching, image composition and image authoring.

I don't know about everyone else but, I think its hard to find tutorials for anything other than Photoshop. Not to knock Photoshop or anything. Photoshop is really nice if you can cough up the money for it. So I went the less expensive route.

With just a few easy steps I will show you how to use the clone tool to add color to a black and white photo.

Be sure to save your photo under a new name so that you don't mess up your original.

What you will need:
1. The latest version of GIMP. http://www.gimp.org/
2. A color photo
3. Steady mouse hand

Step 1: Start Gimp and Desaturate

First open your copy of GIMP.

Then open a color photo of your choice. Be sure to "Save as" before you modify the photo. I named my photo "flowerblackandwhite" Once opened, select "Colors" from the drop down menu and choose "Desaturate". This will convert your photo into shades of gray.

<p>Nice really :)</p>
<p>i have only just begun to use any sort of photo manipulation tools.. I have recently <br>took some pictures of my friends Sons wedding, i used a technique to <br>make the background black &amp; white and re-colorize the bride. it was a <br> great end result. I want to try to get a shot of when they left the <br>church and everyone threw the confetti...i want to make the shot black <br>and white but then change the color of the individual confetti pieces. <br>How do i change their color? (they are already mostly white so using the <br> technique from before wont work) I think it will be quite a long <br>process but how do i make them, blue, red, pink,yellow etc. please <br>help.</p>
1. The title is really inappropriate. I&rsquo;m looking for a guide on how to colorize a black-and-white photo, not make a hybrid B&amp;W/color photo from a full-color photo. <br> <br>2. An easier way to do a hybrid like this would be to make two layers &ndash; a desaturated copy on top of the original &ndash; and then just erase from the B&amp;W layer where you want to be colored.
That's cool, I didn't know that you could clone from one image to another.
It might be faster/easier to select a contiguous region by color, keep adding &amp; selecting until you have the whole area you want to stay colored, then invert and desaturate the rest.
I haven't tried the other method but using this method I made one of these photos in a couple of minutes...
The title of the ible is very misleading. Should be &quot;Make color-accent photos in GIMP&quot;.<br>You are not colorizing a black and white photo, you are desaturating a photo and resaturating only parts of it.<br>Colorizing a black and white photo means having a black and white photo and manualy &quot;painting&quot; it with a color overlay.<br>
Finally! Something I can do with GIMP! I love it...I use Linux at haome so its cool...first results;<br><br>
thanks!!! here is my first one
This was great! But I want to save the image so that I can email it and upload it. It is just showing a pic of the gimp. I can download it but I still cant upload it like a photo.. Do you know how to do this?
I mostly save my pictures in the form of a jpeg. Before you can do this you must first flatten the image under the Layer controls and then save image as a jpeg. Try this and see if it doesn't work better for you.
I think this would be much easier using layer masks<br /> <br /> Take your image and duplicate the layer. Desaturate the copy and an make sure it is the top most layer. Now painting in the layer mask with black reveals the colored part of the image below. No guessing and cloning required. If you reveal too much out side of your area of interest simply switch to white to cover it up.<br /> <br /> <br />
<p>You are very right, that method is a more simplistic approach. That was actually going to be my next tutorial. I just never found the time to do another one. Plus I&nbsp;kind of lost interest in the contest I had entered it in to. Thank you for your input.</p>
Great instructable! Here is my attempt at it.
wow, thanks - it's always nice to see some good GIMP stuff!<br /> <br /> i can't wait to try this.<br /> <br /> <br />
Nice simple clear. Good tute. Gets my vote and I am even IN this contest too!<br />
Hey thanks man this is awesome . here is my pic. i still need a little practice
Wow. That turned out pretty good. There is another way to get the same effect that I think is a little easier. I may do another instructable on how others can do that way to. Be sure to check back.
Hey you should make another and enter it in the photo contest if is still open.
You make this look very easy! Thanks!