December 6, 2007

iPod Dancer Tutorial

You know those iPod commercials where the people are black and the earbuds are white and they are dancing and such? Well, I had this crazy idea, literally two seconds ago.

I decided, hey, why not make a tut for all to see about how to make the little dancers with white earbuds in Gimp? So I did.

EDIT: Video iPod Dancer Follow-Up

1) Get a picture of someone dancing. It doesn't matter who. Anyone. I got mine from GettyImages:

2) Open your image in Gimp. If you want, you can clear out that logo if you got it from a stock website. Also do some housekeeping, such as making the background one color, cleaning up anything fuzzy, etc.
3) Create a new transparent layer. Name it "Black." Click the paths tool. Make sure in the toolbox, the paths tool is in Design Mode and polygonal is unchecked. Now, start outlining your dancer with the paths tool. When you get to the end, hold down CTRL and click on the beginning dot. It should look somewhat like mine:

3) Now click on the "Selection from Path" button. You should now have a selection around your dancer. Click on the Paintbucket Tool, and, with black as your foreground color, fill the selection. It should fill your dancer completely black. Now you can go around a clean up the edges a little if they're not smooth or some of the original picture is showing. It should look like mine:

So now it looks like we're getting somewhere. Now we'll make the background, so the earbuds will show up. You can delete the original image now.
4) Create a new white background layer. Drag it under your black layer. Pick a color for your background. I'm using a green one that I've seen in the commercials. Apply it to the white background layer.

Now we will add the earbuds...yay!
5) Select the paths tool. Zoom in on the ear and draw the shape of an earbud. Fill it with white.

6) Now, using the paths tool, draw an iPod in his hand. Here's mine (yes, I know my iPod is smaller than it should be):

If you want, you can draw fingers and thumbs to the hand to make it look like he is holding the iPod.

7) Use the paths tool again to draw the cord. Instead of clicking selection from path, this time you will click stroke path. Experiment with the boldness of the line.

And now for some final touches:

Now you have an iPod dancer. Have fun.

EDIT: Video iPod Dancer Tutorial Follow-Up


  1. This is a cool tut. But wouldn't it have been easier and faster to use the "select by color" tool to remove the background,especially since it was all one color. It would save a lot of time and eliminate all the clicking with the "paths" tool... To animate you could copy the black image several times then off set or rotate them some to give the appearance of dancing..

  2. I like the idea, but it really wouldn't be any easier (at least to me). Plus, you wouldn't get experience with the paths tool now would you? :-)

  3. go to color tools and do 'threshold' fill in the white spots....

    A lot easier

  4. I tried to do the Paths stuff with my model

    * a Dalek, in this case *

    but when I chose the Select By Path,
    and did the Paintbucket, the whole body was not filled in..

  5. that's what's up.

  6. WOW! Very hard though

    Really cool did (*cough* doing) cyberman one. Look epic. The Spice girls will be deleted


Have a comment or just wanna say what's up? Go ahead!