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Old 10-30-2006, 04:31 AM
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Default Gimp 2 Tutorial

Gimp 2--How To Use It

So, I've seen this randomly mentioned in threads around the Art forums. People always complain about not knowing how to use Gimp. Well, I have Gimp 2, and I have gotten the hang of it. I haven't mastered it, but I can use it properly. Here, I am going to pass on what I have figured out.


Gimp 2 Tool Index

These are the tools used in Gimp. I have them divided into color coded rows. Note that I do not know how to use all of the tools, but I definitley know how to use the ones required to make semi-photoshop images. I will give the best description I can for each tool, and I will show you specifically how to use it later. For now, here are the tools:

Row One

Orange--Selection Square: This tool is used to select regions. It works primarily for the layer you have chosen in the layer tab [discussed later].

Yellow--Selection Circle: This tool works the same as the square, but it selects circular regions.

Blue--Lasso: This tool selects hand-drawn regions from your layer. Simple outline the part you want to select.

Purple--Area Select: This tool selects areas according to the limitations you specify. [Ex. All of the same color in that layer]

Red/Dark Blue/Green--This goes under the "Haven't Figured Them Out Yet" section. If you know what they do, just post a reply with a description. I will edit it under the appropriate tool.

Pink--Eyedropper: This tool selects a color from your image. Hold the mouse over the color you want, and left-click. Wahlah, you have now selected that color.

Dark Green--Magnifying Glass: This tool zooms in and out of your image. Select the tool, then select "Zoom In" or "Zoom Out" from the options below. Then, click over the image and it does the specified action.

Light Green--Um, Haven't figured it out yet. n_n;;

Black--Image Movement: This tool moves selected areas. After selecting a region, hold the mouse over that area. Left-click and hold it, then move the mouse around the screen. Move it to where you would like your image to be, and let go. Then, click an area outside of the region to place it.

Row Two

Orange--Crop: If you want to cut your image, select an area of your image. This tool will automaticall crop the image to where the region you selected is the full picture.

Yellow--Rotation: This tool rotates the selected image. About as simple as that.

Blue--Shrink/Stretch: This tool changes the size of the selected region. Pull the corners out to make it grow, and move them inwards to make it shrink.

Purple--Shear: To use this tool, select an area. Then, move the corners as needed. This will tilt the image from side to side, causing it to appear diagnally.

Red--Perspective: This tool takes away the limits of the Shear tool. You can select the corner of your image, and move it in any direction. This can cause it to come towards the viewer, go away from the viewer, etc.

Dark Blue--Mirror: This is really simple. Select this tool, then click on your image. This causes the image to become a mirror of the original one.

Green--Text: Select this tool, then select the font, font color, and other specific details. Click on your image where you want the text to be, and type in your text. Note that you can move it around using the Image Movement tool.

Pink--Pour Tool: You can use this to fill in specified regions. You may also fill the whole image with a pattern.

Dark Green--Gradients: This is a cool part of Gimp. Select this tool, then select the specifc gradient to you want. you can place these first and make them the background, or you can place these over the image. If you do the second, be sure to adjust the opacity scale at the top. Towards the front=more transparent; Towards the end=less transparent.

Lime Green--Pencil: I don't think that I really need to explain this, since you have seen it in every image program known to man.

Black--Paint: This is like a newer pencil. The difference? This tool has hinted edges. That means, it looks cleaner. The outlines fade into the background color.

Row Three

Orange--Eraser: This pretty much does what it says. It erases.

Yellow--Brushes: Yes! The almighty brush tool! For this one, select a brush from the drop-down menu. Then, you can choose to use a color from the gradients, or a normal color. The normal color never quite works for me, so I stick to the gradients. To give your image Photoshop-ish effects, play around with the brushes. Also, play with the opacity to make it look cooler.

Blue--Ink: This is pretty much the same as the paint/pencil tools. The only difference is that it can blob up if you hold it in one space for too long, and the lines aren't as smooth. It really is like an ink pen!

Purple--Pattern Painter: Use this to paint similar to the Paint tool. With this tool, though, you can paint using the Gimp patterns. Change opacity to add texture over your images.

Red--Blur/Sharpen: This tool is used to blur or sharpen your image. Select one of the two in the option section, and then select the brush. I recommend the biggest version of the "Fuzzy" brush, since it gives you nice blurring effects. This is great for smoothing out images or trying to connect them. The sharpen is great for making one section of the image stand out.

Dark Blue--Smudge: This tool smudges your image. You can use this to make two images flow together. You can also use the Blur tool over it to smooth out the smudging.

Green--Dodge/Burn: This is great for making your images look 3-D. Simple select the tone [Shadows, Midtones, Highlights] and the "Fuzzy" brush tool and get to work! Use the dodge to make the area lighter, and the burn to make the area darker. For the tones, shadows are the strongest, and highlights are the weakest.


Here are very simple examples of how to use the above tools. I'm only showing the ones that change your image [A.K.A. everything but the selection tools, etc.] and I will show you using the Aerodactyl sugimori image.

Original Image:















Pattern Painter:




Those are not the best examples of how to use them, but they definitely show what each tool does. Use the tools the way that you think they should be carried out to make your projects look their best!

Note: To add a semi-transparent image, paste it onto the canvas, and go to the menu bar at the top. Select "Layer", the select "Transparency" followed by "Color to Alpha". A window pops up, and the default color is white. Select okay, and the image will be semi-transparent. I'm still working on how to get the white area to go away, so that the whole image is not transparent.

Last edited by Surly Professor; 11-02-2006 at 03:23 AM.