You are currently viewing GIMP – Adobe Photoshop for Open Source Community
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  • Post last modified:August 27, 2021

I love open source software. My open source photo software review section would be incomplete without GIMP overview, an exemplary open source photo editor. GIMP stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program. At first sight, the engineering-sound name makes you feel that GIMP is not invented for shopping (photo shopping) or profit-making interest. On the contrary, open source GIMP is a pure brainchild of coding and high-tech.

Launched in the 90-s by university students as photo editing software with open code, GIMP was cordially welcomed by the whole open source community. Many freelancers contributed to GIMP code, translations and bug fixing. Now GIMP is acknowledged as the leader of open source photo software.

Watch GIMP tutorial for beginners below:

GIMP is a great free photo editor for advanced users and web designers. I cannot recommend GIMP for home use. If you are a photo amateur or need to edit a few family photos, please take a look at Photoscape or Loonapix reviews.

However, if you are a pro-photographer, you can give a try to GIMP. In order not to speak idly, I have interviewed Anna, Creative Designer from MakeBadge:

-Tell me what you think about GIMP?

-I’m Adobe Photoshop addict since first CS edition. But I’m glad to try something new. I installed GIMP 2.6. The good thing, GIMP needs less PC memory and works fast (I tested GIMP at Windows XP). Besides, it resembles my Adobe Photoshop. However, GIMP has obviously not a copy-and-paste interface.

-What did you find peculiar about GIMP 2.6?

-As I said the interface really looks similar to Adobe photo editor. The tool list is huge. I believe I found most of my usual Photoshop tools. It’s amazing for a free product! Tool icons are colorful and they distract a bit from work.

It takes some time to get used to additional windows with toolbox, layers, channels, paths, gradients. But on the other hand, I can move windows freely. However, there is one thing I really can’t understand. Why does GIMP shut the whole application when I click Close icon on an additional window. In my opinion, it’s very inconvenient.

-Is GIMP a handy pro-design tool? Did you manage to edit an image with GIMP easily?

-Upon the whole GIMP is a high quality product for a budget designer or a Linux user. But anyway, GIMP usability is far from paid Mac or Windows software.

What I like about GIMP is that I can import my .psd image files. But when I make a new layer for this image, GIMP asks me to input the new layer dimensions. It’s weird. I want to keep the same image proportions! Why do I need to introduce the same sizes several times?

Besides, text editing in GIMP looks strange. When you enter text you see an additional window (text window and the initial image). It feels that you enter the text twice. Moreover, there is too much of scrolling in toolbox window, although it’s a minor drawback.

– Let’s sum up your ideas on GIMP!

-If we talk about GIMP features, GIMP is getting closer to Adobe Photoshop. GIMP has various plugins, so you can enrich the application functionality. If we speak about GIMP usability, I can’t call GIMP ideal user-friendly photo editing software. GIMP has lots of opportunities for improvement. Thanks to vast open source community support GIMP develops so fast! I think it will overcome drawbacks soon.

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This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Barry

    Having a difficult time understanding GIMP. The most glaring difficulties as I see it is the lack of tutorials ie. step by step manipulation examples.

    Another doc that would be handy is a sort of glossary on each button (eg. the air-brush) or each drop-down menu selection, a few words on what each item does and/or its intended purpose in a dialog. In addition it would be nice if there was more written material on the various windows ie. when they appear and what they mean and what choices they present. Yes, I am aware of the good material on layers, but there is nothing that gives an overview of layers and masks and the possiblities that are there.

    Oh yeah, there is nothing that I can find that tells you how to abort the selection process if you make a mistake; I just close everything and start all over again ( of course, I am just aiming for very simple manipulations.)

  2. anna

    Thanks a lot Barry for your suggestions! I’ll dwell upon GIMP topic with more detailed guidelines.

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