Introduction to Image Manipulation

The following sections provide tips for working with your own images. This only introduces a small part of the things possible in GIMP.

Special Effects

In the context menu, many different manipulation tools are available under Filter or Script-Fu. These include some easy-to-apply effects. Usually, clicking the filter in the menu opens an option box with which to control the effects of such filters. Refer to the internal help system for descriptions of the filters.

Inserting Text

You can easily integrate text into your images with GIMP. First determine the text color with the aid of the color selection icon in the toolbox. Then activate text input with the T icon and click the image. A dialog box opens in which to specify your text and the font settings. Depending on which fonts are available on your system, specify a font family in the first selection column. The second column determines style and weight (medium, bold, or italic) and the third column sets the type size. Click OK to add the text to your image. As long as dotted lines surround the text, you can move it. However, once the text is anchored in your image, you can only remove it with Undo as long as you have not saved the image. Put text on its own layer for easy modification later.

In the option box of the text tool, select between a single line of text and a text window with several lines and text alignment. When you activate Use Dynamic Text, a click inside the image opens a dialog in which to enter and align multiline text.

Retouching Images

The most suitable tool for this purpose is the clone tool. It is represented by a rubber stamp in the tool window. The use of this tool is described in Section “Paint Tools”, but here are a few hints:

  • Set the brush to a medium size with a diffuse border area.

  • Work on an enlarged representation of your image.

  • Open a second view of the image with View -> New View and zoom to 1:1 to see how the changes look.

  • Save your work from time to time under a different file name. If you do not like one of your modifications, revert to a previous stage.

Retouching may take some time because you often need to change brushes and redefine the image section to copy. Working with the clone tool requires some experience.