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Revision Date: 10 January 2016

Distort Effects

This sub-menu contains eight effects which are used to distort, transform or convolute the active layer or selection.

Artistic Effects
Distort Effects

The following original image will be used to demonstrate the Distort effects:

Original Image
Original Image

Note

The examples on this page show the effects being applied to an entire image. It is easy to restrict the adjustment to a sub-section of the image simply by making a selection.  If a selection is active when the effect is run, it will only be applied to the selected region. Areas outside of the active selection will remain unchanged.

Tip

The controls shown in the effect dialogs operate in much the same way; drag the indicator left, right or in a circular motion (for an angle control).  Typing in a numeric value in the text box or using the up/down arrows beside the text box also changes the current value.  The keyboard arrow keys can be used to alter the value of a control once it has the focus.
Multiple controls can be used in isolation or combination. If more than one is altered, the cumulative effect will be shown.

Effects Distort Bulge icon Bulge

This effect makes part of the layer or selection swell or shrink, as if the image had been stretched or squeezed.

Bulge controls the strength of the effect.

The Center shows where the effect will be interpreted from. Center is relocatable: use the double slider control or drag the cross hair in the thumbnail preview.

Example - Effects > Distort > Bulge

Effects > Distort > Bulge

Effects Distort Crystalize icon Crystalize

The Crystalize effect mimics the Pixelate effect (see below), but does so by transforming the enlarged pixels into a series of simple polygon shapes.

Cell Size controls the size of the shapes.

Quality reflects the smoothness of the edges. Higher values will yield smoother edges.

Reseed randomizes which pixels are used as the source color and the cell shape.

Example - Effects > Distort > Crystalize

Effects > Distort > Crystalize

Effects Distort Dents icon Dents

This popular effect distorts the active layer or selection as if it was reflected in turbulent water or torn into small strips and roughly reassembled.

Scale determines how big or small the torn strips will be. Low values create more small pieces while large values generate fewer larger pieces.

Refraction is the amount of displacement from the original position. Smaller values create less turbulence while larger values increase the chaos.

Returning to the torn paper analogy; Roughness dictates how roughly torn the strips will be and Tension is a measure of how wide the strips will be.

Quality reflects the smoothness of the edges. Higher values will yield smoother edges.

Random Noise/Reseed randomizes the tearing of the strips into a new pattern.

Example - Effects > Distort > Dents

Effects > Distort > Dents

Effects Distort Frosted Glass icon Frosted Glass

This will make the original appears as if it were being viewed through a sheet of frosted glass.

The Maximum and Minimum Scatter Radius sliders control the amount of scattering.  The Maximum setting determines how far a pixel can be displaced from its original position.  The Minimum setting defines the minimum displacement that will be applied.

Smoothness controls the harshness of the displaced pixels. Low settings give a more jagged appearance. A higher setting applies anti-aliasing to smooth the results.

Example - Effects > Distort > Frosted Glass

Effects > Distort > Frosted Glass

Effects Distort Pixelate icon Pixelate

This effect greatly reduces detail by enlarging regularly sampled pixels. The resultant cells are always square in shape.

Cell Size determines the size of the enlarged pixels. Higher values create larger sized squares.

Example - Effects > Distort > Pixelate

Effects > Distort > Pixelate

Effects Distort Polar Inversion icon Polar Inversion

This applies a transformation between Cartesian and Polar coordinate systems.  The result is a radical positional transformation which recursively wraps the image around itself in an endlessly repeating pattern.

Amount is the strength of the effect.
Offset is used to reset or relocate center point of the effect.
Edge Behavior (Clamp, Reflect & Wrap) defines how the effect behaves as the transformation reaches then exceeds the edge of the canvas;

 Clamp fills areas uncovered by the relocation of the original region with solid color.

 Reflect fills areas uncovered by the relocation of the original region with a mirror image of the original.

 Wrap repeats the original into areas uncovered by the relocation of the original region.

Quality defines the amount of detail. Lower settings lend a more jagged appearance to displaced pixels while higher settings give a smoother appearance.

Example - Effects > Distort > Polar Inversion

Effects > Distort > Polar Inversion

Effects Distort Tile Reflection icon Tile Reflection

This makes the image appear as if reflected in a wall of mirrored tiles, each having a slight curvature to it's surface.

Angle controls the rotation or angle of the effect. The specified angle is in relation to horizontal. An angle of zero or 180 degrees will render the tiles as having top and bottom parallel to the horizon.

Tile Size determines the size of the tiles. The tiles always remain square.

Curvature is a measure of how much of the surroundings are reflected in each tile. In other words it controls the amount of curvature of the tile edges.

Quality defines the amount of detail. Lower settings lend a jagged appearance to displaced pixels while higher settings give smoother results.

Example - Effects > Distort > Tile Reflection

Effects > Distort > Tile Reflection

Effects Distort Twist icon Twist

This effect mimics winding the image around a skewer placed through the viewing screen. Clockwise and counter-clockwise rotations are possible.

Amount/Direction control the number of ‘winds’ about the skewer. Use positive numbers for a clockwise twist and negative numbers for anticlockwise.

Size dictates how much of the image will be caught in the distortion. 1.00 represents the entire layer or selection, while smaller values will capture less.  Values larger than 1.00 cause the twist to behave as if it was applied to a surface larger than the canvas.

Center is the focal point of the effect.

Quality defines the amount of detail. Lower settings lend a jagged appearance while higher settings give a smoother appearance.

Example - Effects > Distort > Twist

Effects > Distort > Twist