#GIMP’s “Brightness-Contrast” tool

I am back! 🙂 

Welcome to our second week of learning the basics of GIMP! 

One common problem in taking pictures is the images being too light or too dark. The GIMP has 3 level adjustment tools in making the necessary corrections in such images: Brightness-Contrast, Levels, and Curves

Let us start with the simplest level: the Brightness-Contrast tool (Figure 1). 

Figure 1: Where to find the Brightness-Contrast Tool


This tool has two basic controls/sliders: one for brightness and one for contrast (figure 2).  You just need to drag the sliders until the image looks the way you want it. Always enable the Preview checkbox so that you will be able to see any changes you make with the sliders. Dragging the slider to the right will increase the brightness and the contrast while dragging it to the left will do the exact opposite. The Reset button will bring you back to the original image if you want to start over while Cancel will dismiss the dialog without making any changes to the image and Ok will take the current settings and apply the changes made to the image. 

Figure 2: The Brightness-Contrast Tool


Playing with the sliders can be fun. Increasing the brightness slider without increasing the contrast may make the image looks washed out (figure 3). Meanwhile, increasing the contrast alone will make the colors seem brighter but the image will still be too dark (figure 4). Increasing both brightness and contrast will provide you the result that you wanted but not necessarily on the same level (figure 5). Just play with it until you get the brightness that you want. 

Figure 3: Only brightness increased will make the image look washed out


Figure 4: Increasing the Contrast alone. The colors may seem brighter but the image will still be too dark


Figure 5: Both Brightness and Contrast increased


Using the Brightness-Contrast tool may or may not give you the result that you want. Well, you don’t have to worry about it coz there are still the Levels and Curves tools, which will be our next topics. 

See you on the next lesson! 😉


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