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I'm not particularly experienced in graphic design, so maybe there's an easy way to do this that I just haven't noticed, but...

I have a layered PNG image in Gimp. It's a complex shape (a photo of a real-world object) with transparency throughout the image (having carefully and painstakingly erased background parts from around and within the shape). It works great on a website I'm designing.

However, now there's an element on the website which would, in a natural setting, cast a bit of a shadow over part of this image. So the brightness of the image no longer looks right when viewed in the context of the page.

I tried reducing the brightness of the whole image, but the shading still looks unnatural. There would only be a bit of a shadow over part of the image. Is there a way to adjust the brightness along a gradient? Or maybe have a kind of brightness "brush" that I could nudge along until it looks right?

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In Photoshop there is a solution, but in Gimp I'm stumped for an answer, sorry –  ueberkim Jan 27 '12 at 19:09

3 Answers 3

Looks like I found something that will help my particular situation. The Dodge/Burn tool. I set it to Burn and Midtones and used a fuzzy circle brush. It feels very much like painting a shadow on the object. The only catch is that it's cumulative so one has to use as few strokes of the brush as possible or it'll get too burned too fast.

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Try reducing Opacity of Gradient, which will help in reducing its intensity and in-turn helping out the problem.

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You can use the dodge/burn brushes but you can also set a layer style to dodge/burn, allowing you to make a shape layer over the object you want to alter rather than having to worry about the cumulative effect of the dodge/burn brush tools.

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