Green screen is technology that’s usually reserved for use in video. Basically, a green background is placed behind an object that will be in motion and it is recorded. In post-production, the green background is removed and a CGI background or a still image is added. The green screen is easier to track in image/video editors which is why it’s used. Green screens are also used with images and, like videos, you have to remove a green screen background from an image in post-production. Here’s how you can do that in GIMP.
This is the image we’re starting out with.
Remove green screen background
The tools you need to remove a green screen background on Windows 10 are GIMP. You can also use Photoshop or another image editor but we’re going with GIMP since it’s free. Download and install it on your Windows 10 PC and follow the steps below.
- Open the image that you want to remove the green screen background from in GIMP. You can use the File>Open option to select and open it.
- Once the image is open, look for the Layers panel. There should only be one layer.
- Right-click the layer and from the menu select ‘Add alpha channel’.
- After adding the Alpha channel, you need to select the ‘Fuzzy select tool’ or as you might recognize it; the wand tool.
- Click on the green part of the image and it will be selected. All of the green may not be selected in a single click so hold down the Shift key and click other parts of the green area in the image to select it. Continue selection until you’ve gotten as much of the green part as you can get.
- Tap Delete.
- Use the erase tool to remove any large, disjointed chunks of the green screen.
You will still be left with some green around the edges where there is shadow. The best way to remove it if you’re not skilled with the eraser tool is to use the Paths tool.
- Select the Paths tool.
- Click at the start of the area you want to delete to begin the path.
- Start outlining the area you want to remove. Click once to add a new corner, click and drag to add a curved line.
- Continue adding points along a path until you’ve outlined the area you want to delete.
- Close the path i.e. make sure the path you’ve outlined makes a closed shape where the part that you want to delete is inside it. The shape can be anything and does not have to be a proper, geometric shape.
- On the Layers panel, go to the Paths tab.
- Right-click the path and select ‘Add to selection’.
- Tap the Delete key.
The part that was outlined in the path will be deleted. You can export/save the image now, or repeat to refine it further.
Here’s what we ended up.