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FG to transparent gradient in text

Jan 20, 2011, 18:57
Post: #1
FG to transparent gradient in text
I can't seem to get this to work. I can do a gradient from FG to BG ok, but I can't get the text to fade to transparent. I create a default image with transparent background, add FG white text to it, do a Alpha to selection on the layer, which outlines the text, then try the gradient. As I said, opaque gradients work, but I can't fade to transparent.
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Jan 20, 2011, 21:16
Post: #2
RE: FG to transparent gradient in text
The transparent part of a gradient is where the gradient doesn't affect the layer, not where it makes the layer become transparent.

For what you want to do, you have to use a gradient in the layer mask, to make the layer fade to transparent:

- Draw your text in the non-transparent color
- "layer/alpha to selection"
- "layer/add layer mask" to the text layer (and initialize to the layer's alpha channel). You will get you text in white on black in the layer mask (whatever the true color of the text in the layer)
- "layer/edit layer mask"
- draw a white to black gradient across your text. In the layer mask, the text will fade to black, meaning that in the layer it becomes transparent
- once done, you can get rid of the layer mask by "layer/apply layer mask" (do not "delete" the layer mask, as it would suppress the transparency)

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Jan 21, 2011, 02:44
Post: #3
RE: FG to transparent gradient in text
Quote: "layer/add layer mask" to the text layer
what option do I use in the dialog for adding the mask?
Quote: (and initialize to the layer's alpha channel).
what does this mean?
Quote: You will get you text in white on black in the layer mask (whatever the true color of the text in the layer)
I don't see a black background, although I'm using FG white and BG black in the toolbox.
Quote: "layer/edit layer mask"
- draw a white to black gradient across your text. In the layer mask, the text will fade to black, meaning that in the layer it becomes transparent
- once done, you can get rid of the layer mask by "layer/apply layer mask" (do not "delete" the layer mask, as it would suppress the transparency)
I can't seem to get this far, I must be leaving some step out.

I said I was a beginner!
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Jan 21, 2011, 12:01
Post: #4
RE: FG to transparent gradient in text
Gimp considers that a pixel is defined by 4 values, the 3 colors (R,G&B) and a fourth value, the transparency. The colors are called "channels" and the transparency becomes the "Alpha channel". The "layer mask" is a way to edit the alpha channel without affecting the color channels (ie, it only acts on the layer transparency).

(Jan 21, 2011 02:44)kaloua3 Wrote:  
Quote: "layer/add layer mask" to the text layer
what option do I use in the dialog for adding the mask?
Quote: (and initialize to the layer's alpha channel).
what does this mean?

Well, the option to use is " initialize to the layer's alpha channel" Smile so that the layer mask will start with the current transparency map of the layer.

(Jan 21, 2011 02:44)kaloua3 Wrote:  
Quote: You will get you text in white on black in the layer mask (whatever the true color of the text in the layer)
I don't see a black background, although I'm using FG white and BG black in the toolbox.

See attachment 1

(Jan 21, 2011 02:44)kaloua3 Wrote:  
Quote: "layer/edit layer mask"
- draw a white to black gradient across your text. In the layer mask, the text will fade to black, meaning that in the layer it becomes transparent
- once done, you can get rid of the layer mask by "layer/apply layer mask" (do not "delete" the layer mask, as it would suppress the transparency)
I can't seem to get this far, I must be leaving some step out.

See attachment 2

(Jan 21, 2011 02:44)kaloua3 Wrote:  I said I was a beginner!

We are all someday Smile

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Jan 21, 2011, 14:38
Post: #5
RE: FG to transparent gradient in text
Quote:We are all someday Smile
Thanks, I've got it now. I went back and RTFM and learned all about layers and masks and what shows up where in all the various dialogs. The GIMP user's manual is quite good. There are actually several ways to do this, and I found tutorials out there, including on YouTube, that show how and now make sense.
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