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Alpha Skills Lesson #4
Extracting a Simple Logo
from a Complex Background

when few colors are involved over a color-rich photograph, color gradient or complex rendered background image

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However, in our little exercise here, we want to separate the green and the blue parts. Therefore, use the magic wand again, this time starting (without SHIFT) on the blue parts of the top text (Ping).

Make sure also to Shift-click the dot on the 'i'

Then Shift click the blue parts of the bottom string, Pong.

And this time also make sure to shift-click the variouis blue islands, such as the inner part of the 'o', the inner part of 'p', and both ovals in the 'g'

Just like before after picking up the green elements in this matter, use

menu: Brush > Use selected as brush

to pick it up into a new custom brush, and

menu: brush > Store & manage...

Now we have two stored brushes of separate colors: the green one we selcted first, and the blue one we just selected now.

Now you can use these two custom brushes for many different compisitions. For example, change the Scale slider down in the stored brush manager, and in the case of the green brush also rotate the image until it appears at a 90-degree angle.

You can then easily stamp down the two respective brushes in various places:

Another thing you might want to do is to stamp down one, such as the blue first, and then 'adding' the green one, perfectly lined up to reconstruct the original blue-green set.

Start by stamping down the blue one: select the stored blue brush, and click on the empty image buffer to place it there.

Now that the blue image is in the main image buffer, use the layer system to get ready with a new layer and add the other.

Or, even faster, just switch to the alternate image buffer which always exists: the Swap buffer.

Use 'j' to jump to the swap buffer, or use:

    menu: Image > Swap buffers

(menu: Buffer > Swap buffers   in earlier versions of PD Pro)

Now pick up the other (green) brush and stamp it down, into the swap buffer.

Finally, enable swap mixing, so that both image buffers can be seen at the same time: click the upper-right-most large thumbnail in the tools panel, or right-click that same thumbnail to see the menu of buffer mixing features, and select Swap Mixing.


Both images are now visible, both the green and the blue logo parts. Where they overlap, a multiplication of the colors occurrs, showing a different color.

You're now going to transform one of the image buffers so as to line it up with the other. But before that, and for more precision, you might also want to increase the zoom factor. Click and drag the zoom icon.

Then select the Shift filter from the Transform filters group:

menu:  Filter > Transform > Shift...

Use the Hand icon in the Shift tool panel. Click and drag it to start shifting the position of the current image buffer's content.

You can then easily line up the features, such as the oval inside the 'g' or 'o' in gold, and others.

As expected and mentioned earlier, there may be a slight white gap left even when perfectly lined up. That's due to the anti-aliasing which was present when originally drawing the text elements.

Here's an example of what the resulting lineup might look like:


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part 1 - part 2 - part 3 - part 4 - part 5