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How to make a good looking group picture from individual photos?
Hey there everyone, guest273 here!

How to make a good looking group picture from individual photos?

A short story of why and what I need:

1) I'm about to have my graduation ceremony in my university later this week.
2) Our university has a tradition that each year the people who graduate send their photos to one person and that person makes them into a "group picture" or rather a "group collage".
3) This group collage is given as a gift to the university during the ceremony.
And this year, since no one really wanted to be the person, I was tasked with doing this task.

So, after a weeks of bombarding people with emails I have 34 pictures, one from each student (incusing myself). They're all totally different sizes & I have to make this thing fit on either an A4 or A3 paper. (Currently I'm going for A3 size, which is 4961 x 3508 px.)

I want to make something cool looking. Any ideas?

So my current idea is to take a blank A3 page, make a hexagon pattern where each hexagon would potentially be able to fit a person with his / her picture + their name OR just their picture and fit their name + surname on the 2 hexagons directly below. I have no idea how to mathematically make this possible. Like I don't want to use the half-hexagons on the very edges + I probably want to put the universities logo and faculty name somewhere on the "top row" of the hexagons. After that I have an idea, so the background wouldn't be white to put this HD 4000X3000 image of our universities building front as like a 20-30% transparent layer. I think it would look cool. I could also color the half hexagons in our university color pattern.

Like, how do I do any of this?  Huh Huh Huh Is there an 'easy' way to make each picture match each hexagon somewhat ok? Like is there simple masking in gimp? Because square images in hexagons would look whack.

I would really appreciate just a short description / clip of how to set up the background and how to mask said images so they'd only show in 1 hexagon at a time. Once I know how to do it once I should be able to repeat it 34 times.

Thanks for your help.
34 is an awkward number Wink For A3 size and hexagons, you need to decide how many rows and columns to use. 6 columns and 6 rows gives 36 spaces but not much room for headings and titles. It determines the height of the hexagon, it will not be symmetrical.  I tried a 7 col x 6 row and a grid pattern looks like this: 


Maybe too much room for headings and titles but it is a starting point. As an example the png pattern attached, put it in your Gimp User Profile patterns folder. Just to give some idea layout.

Quote:s there an 'easy' way to make each picture match each hexagon somewhat ok? Like is there simple masking in gimp? Because square images in hexagons would look whack.

Using a layer mask is one way but 34 smaller layers with masks for an A3 image (even A4) will be a monster to manipulate.

You say the portraits come in different sizes.. I would be inclined to make a basic template and create individually before assembling as a whole.

Not easy to make someting "Cool..."

Attached Files Thumbnail(s)
First of all, I hope that you asked your friends to write theirs names as file/image name properly formated, something like "Patrice Lab.jpg" this can help if some one has a script to pick the Layer name ➤ to text layer just above in a loop... if no script around, it's still easier too double click on a picture name in the layer stack copy and past it using the Text Tool (or some one has a better idea to "automate" this process or make it easier/faster?)

Some other ways to do hexagons/shapes if you're not restricted in your creativity to pure hexagons going G'MIC (Filters ➤ G'MIC).

First simple and "automated"
Import the folder where you have all your photos as layer File ➤ Open as layer a window opens, select the first image, then hit Shift and while you're on the Shift key, select the last image (all files in between will be selected as well), then click Open.

Then go to Filters ➤ G'MIC a window opens, in the search box input "montage" (in my example just typing "mon" was enough to bring up most "montage" filters)

[Image: kr0Yur6.png]

You can have some fun with other montage's filters

[Image: Vs7Sb4K.png]

[Image: rkhqdax.png]

[Image: WUo0xlZ.png]

Also another "hard/long" way to do it with the GIMP's natives' tools

Filters ➤ Distorts ➤ Mosaic..., a window opens, to make the hexagons look at the options in the screenshot below.


Put that hexagon grid above all the pictures
then use the Scale Tool as below for each picture


then select the empty place in an hexagon with the Fuzzy Select tool, then Select ➤ Grow 2 or 3 pixels, then click in the layers stack the picture below this hexagon, then add a layer mask by "Selection"



Advantage of this loonng method is that after if you change your mind, on the top layer (the grid) you can add shadows, change the grid color, add a pattern to the grid and so (also with the @rich2005 method you can do it)

PS: all people's photos in the example are from using "face" as keyword (yes the cat did appear as well Big Grin )
Don't know about making a group picture but you could make one picture with them. Would have to see your photos but you could try it this way
Paste each photo as a 'new layer' and crop to selection around each photo leaving a few pixels to the border of the photos to feather them without losing the photo. After you have all the layers added, feathered and positioned you can merge them. If you do the feathering they will look to be seamlessly put together. That's if you want to do it manually just with Gimp. Looks better too if you have a background on it of the main colour

A quicker way is to use the GMIC filter-Layers>Blend Seamless, after you have all your photos as you want them

Hey hey there everyone!

Sorry for 'necro-ing' this topic! Big Grin I did kind of forget that I even asked for help on this forum, but I have read your suggestions and at least learned something new! Smile

In the end I ended up using MS PowerPoint because it had a feature to 'reshape each image' to a different shape (like a hexagon) of a certain size. I had found a hexagon grid online & it did take some time re-sizing it to have enough Hexagons total to put everything in.

I did actually find the final image just now, but I think that due to privacy reasons I can't share it! Big Grin

I can try to quickly mask everyone's name's & pictures just to show roughly how it ended up looking in the end for those of you curious enough.

Okay, I hid all the personal information & made this half-hazardly.

The people photos were on the white hexagons with their names written in white color above/below them on the blue half hexagons. The last / bottom 3 hexagons I just filled with the university logo, faculty logo and a funny picture of the current 'master' / 'head' (the responsible person for the study program) of the faculty.

The headmaster (that's the word I was looking for) was really happy that he had made it into the collage that will probably stay on the university walls for a long time since there are actually very few pictures with him circulating around.
Thanks for coming back and tell us how you did it.
Give our "Hello" to the happy headmaster Wink

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