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24 December 2013

GIMP's Layer Modes (Somewhat) Demystified – Part 4: A Pictorial Comparison

For a final comparison among the layer modes, I created several examples that visually show the effects of combining various layers.

Grayscale on Grayscale


First, I created a square non-dithered grayscale linear gradient lower layer, then made a copy and rotated it 90º for the upper layer. I chose each layer mode to see the effect. Here's a visual representation of what occurs with each layer mode.


Grayscale Gradient; No Dithering; Lower Layer
Grayscale Gradient; No Dithering;
Lower Layer
Grayscale Gradient; No Dithering; Upper Layer
Grayscale Gradient; No Dithering;
Upper Layer
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Normal; Opacity 50%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Normal; Opacity 50%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Dissolve; Opacity 50%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Dissolve; Opacity 50%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Lighten Only; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Lighten Only; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Screen; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Screen; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Dodge; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Dodge; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Addition; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Addition; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Darken Only; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Darken Only; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Multiply; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Multiply; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Burn; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Burn; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Modes Overlay and Soft Light; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Modes Overlay / Soft Light; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Hard Light; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Hard Light; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Difference; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Difference; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Subtract; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Subtract; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Grain Extract; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Grain Extract; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Grain Merge; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Grain Merge; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Divide; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Divide; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Hue; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Hue; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Saturation; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Saturation; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Color; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Color; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient; Mode Value; Opacity 100%
Grayscale Gradient;
Mode Value; Opacity 100%


Color on Itself


Next, I created a blue gradient with dithering and placed a 90º rotated copy above it. The blue runs from 5252ff to e6e6ff. Notice some interesting differences between the color and grayscale versions.

Blue Gradient 5252ff - e6e6ff; Dithering; Lower Layer
Blue Gradient 5252ff - e6e6ff; Dithering;
Lower Layer
Blue Gradient 5252ff - e6e6ff; Dithering; Upper Layer
Blue Gradient 5252ff - e6e6ff; Dithering;
Upper Layer
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Normal; Opacity 50%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Normal; Opacity 50%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Dissolve; Opacity 50%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Dissolve; Opacity 50%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Lighten Only; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Lighten Only; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Screen; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Screen; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Dodge; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Dodge; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Addition; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Addition; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Darken Only; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Darken Only; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Multiply; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Multiply; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Burn; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Burn; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Modes Overlay and Soft Light; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Modes Overlay / Soft Light; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Hard Light; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Hard Light; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Difference; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Difference; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Subtract; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Subtract; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Grain Extract; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Grain Extract; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Grain Merge; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Grain Merge; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Divide; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Divide; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Hue; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Hue; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Saturation; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Saturation; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Color; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Color; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient; Mode Value; Opacity 100%
Blue on Blue Gradient;
Mode Value; Opacity 100%


Color on a Different Color


Finally, I put a red gradient with dithering on top of the blue gradient to show color combinations. To create the red gradient, I copied the blue gradient, rotated it 90º, changed the hue to a shade of red, and reduced the saturation by 30 and the lightness by 50. The red runs from d92929 to e78992. Notice how these color image patterns are different from the blue on blue patterns because the saturation and value are different.

Blue Gradient 5252ff - e6e6ff; Dithering; Lower Layer
Blue Gradient 5252ff - e6e6ff; Dithering;
Lower Layer
Red Gradient d92929 - e78992; Dithering; Upper Layer
Red Gradient d92929 - e78992; Dithering;
Upper Layer
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Normal; Opacity 50%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Normal; Opacity 50%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Dissolve; Opacity 50%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Dissolve; Opacity 50%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Lighten Only; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Lighten Only; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Screen; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Screen; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Dodge; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Dodge; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Addition; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Addition; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Darken Only; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Darken Only; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Multiply; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Multiply; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Burn; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Burn; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Modes Overlay and Soft Light; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Modes Overlay / Soft Light; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Hard Light; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Hard Light; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Difference; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Difference; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Subtract; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Subtract; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Grain Extract; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Grain Extract; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Grain Merge; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Grain Merge; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Divide; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Divide; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Hue; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Hue; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Saturation; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Saturation; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Color; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Color; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient; Mode Value; Opacity 100%
Red on Blue Gradient;
Mode Value; Opacity 100%


This concludes my series of articles on GIMP layer modes.

See the following articles for detailed information:

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