Step 1: Tools
Step 2: Open Original Photo in GIMP
Optional: You can create a duplicate layer of your original photo to work on by right clicking on the layer in the layers window and choosing Duplicate Layer. I usually work on a copy so I still have the original if I need it. I created a duplicate layer and will be using it throughout this Instructable. I have hidden the original photo by clicking the eye to the left of the Background layer in the Layers window.
Step 3: Delete Background
Using the Eraser tool erase the background. I started off with fuzzy brush (19) with scale set to 10. You may need to change the brush size or scale when you start deleting the background close to your subject. This step takes some time.
Step 4: Make Photo Black and White
Step 5: Color Eyes
You should now only have the iris selected, hit the delete key on the keyboard. There should be a hole where the iris used to be if you see a color instead, right click on the layer and choose Add Alpha Channel. Do the same for both eyes.
From the menu at the top choose Select – None.
Add a new layer, name it eyecolor and move it right below the layer you are working on, for me it is the layer named background copy.
With the eyecolor layer highlighted, color the eyes light gray or white with the paintbrush tool.
Step 6: Add Background
The new layer is named the same as the picture. Move the new layer to the bottom of the layers in the layers window. Scale the picture to fit the boundaries of your original photo.
Step 7: Make Background Black
Click the eye next to the original tree layer in the layers window to hide it, or delete it by highlighting it and clicking the trash can at the bottom of the layers window.
Step 8: Add Clouds
Step 9: Result So Far
Step 10: Adding Details
Highlight the background copy layer. Use the Free Select Tool, with the Add to current selection option selected, to select the eyes.
From the top menu choose Select – Invert.
Highlight the makeup layer and paint black highlights on the eyes, sides of the face, neck and arm using the paintbrush tool with a large fuzzy brush.
Step 11: Changing the Layer Opacity
Step 12: Make Eye Whites Black
Step 13: Easily Change Eye Color
Step 14: Final
Step 15: Notes:
- Use + or – keys on the keyboard to zoom in and out of photo.
- When painting the dark highlights, you can change the opacity of the brush to make some darker or lighter. The opacity for the layer will make the entire layer more or less transparent.
- Use the rectangle or ellipse select tools to select larger portions of the photo to delete when you are deleting the background.
- When using the selection tools, if you check the Feather Edges option, the edges will be less sharp. I didn't use this option in my Instructable but I would next time, especially with the eyes. It makes the cuts look less noticeable.