You Can Create Instagram-Type Filters In Paint.Net

You Can Create Instagram-Type Filters In Paint.Net

Sometimes, you may want to get that “Instagram” look without actually having to use Instagram. It’s not as easy as clicking a button, but here are a few steps you can use in to get that filter feel.

Image via Pixabay

Without ever actually having an Instagram account, I needed to use it for a project recently and was surprised to learn you can’t just upload photos to a web portal from your PC. I didn’t exactly want the app on my phone — so I decided to recreate the look the hard way.

The model for our test illustration will be my good friend, Black Iron Tarkus from Dark Souls. He really wants some nice, artsy images of himself laying around the house, like so:

What can I say, dude likes to chill on angled couches. But dodgy photo manipulations aside, we’re lucky that Photo Editor has a guide for doing just that. The main steps are as follows:

1. Create a new layer over your photo.

2. Hit F4 and change the new layer’s blending to Multiply.

3. Hit F8 and select the colour you want your filter to be. Then hit the Paint Bucket tool and click inside the photo.

4. Create another layer with blending mode Overlay. Then hit the Gradient tool. Click on one side of the photo, and drag to the other side. Redo if necessary to get a result that pleases you.

5. Go to Effects -> Noise -> Add Noise, and play with the settings until you get a grainy look that you like. If you don’t dig the grain, skip this step.

That’s it! Voila! Let’s see how Tarkus turned out…

You Can Create Instagram-Type Filters In Paint.Net

Oh Tarkus, you Instagram attention-seeker, you.

I’ve left out a few steps to just concentrate on the main ones, and you can absolutely get away with just those, but to read the full post and go for perfection, head over to Photo Editor.


  • A number of my Photoshop friends have a good laugh when I use Paint.Net for a few projects. But really with all the plugin’s you can get for this program it’s almost just as powerful to use as the commercial ones. Get on the Paint.Net forums and you’ll find plenty of support as well.

    • Absolutely. For some of the super quick things I need to do (just a quick crop for example) there’s really no need to bring in the heavyweight. And for the slightly more complicated but not too impressive graphics jobs I’d do, with plugins can still handle it fine.

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