Thursday, August 8, 2013

What is GIMP Software?

What is Gimp software? It's GNU Image Manipulation Program. This project has been going on for about 18 years, since 1995, when Spencer Kimball and Peter Mattis started it as a students at University of California, Berkeley.

It is alternative to Adobe Photoshop®, but it is open source and free. And what does that mean? Open source means that anybody can download the source code and improve it, and free means that we can download it for free.

I found GIMP few years ago and I have been using it regularly since then. There are so many things we can do with GIMP, not only complicated stuff with photo, but simple things too. A very interesting option is screen shot of our window or desktop image. There are many online screenshot programs, but they don't capture the whole screen, just the picture in the active window, that this usually the pages we are reading. And of course we can use it for "playing" with our pictures.

And what else can we do with it? There are few things we can do with it:
- change size of a picture (resize it)
- flip and rotate image
- crop photos (cut out only little pieces)
- change background
- change color of our picture
- remove red eyes
- or use different effects and filters to change our photos.

Below you can find each of these explained - all these are really easy things to do and can be very useful when your photos don't look as good as you want.

With GIMP you can crop photos - cut out part of the picture, if there is something on it that you don't like. With cropping you can change image from rectangle to square, from for instance 400 x 300 px to 250 x 250 px.

You can also resize images if they are too large or when you want different dimensions of photo.

Very useful thing is red eye removal. I have a camera with red eye removal button, but sometimes even that doesn't help and my images have red eyes. And here you can find really simple way to remove it.
You can also change colors - I demonstrate it on this page with changing the color of eyes and it looks pretty good, and you can change the color of just anything you want.

Screen shot 

First here is screen shot. It is really easy to make a screen shot, Just go to File - Create - Screen Shot and you can make it. One great feature I really like is that it works with delay - you can add how many seconds of delay you want.

Scale image 

We can also change size of a photo. We do that with Image - Scale Image.
Inside the larger photo you can see smaller and resized photo.

Crop image

We can crop photos. It means that we cut out little pieces, only the details we want.
First we go to Select - All, and then to Image - Crop to selection.

Flip and rotate image

Another fun and useful thing we can do is flip and rotate images.
We just use Image - Transform and we can flip our images horizontally or vertically.

We can rotate our photos too. We can use three different ways of rotation, 180 degrees (it turns our photo on head) or 90 degrees clockwise (to the right) and 90 degrees counter clockwise (to the left).

Change background

Another thing we can do with Gimp is change background. It is a little bit more complicated, and I explained it in my other GIMP tutorial How to change background of a photo.

Above you can see photo before and after I changed background.

Remove red eyes

We can remove red eyes from the photo. They can be very annoying. We do it with Filters - Enhance - Red Eye Removal.

Change color

We can also change color of our photo. Go to Colors and play with colors of our photo.
Here we can see some examples how we can change eye color.

We can also use a lot of different effects and filters to change our photos, but there are so many of them that I will have to make another lens about Gimp effects and filters.

In the mean time you can try them and play with them. Have fun.

Photos on this page are from Wikimedia (Public Domain License) and by Pippi Dust. 


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