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The GIMP

The Review that Kept Me from Star Trek

Best:
It does way more than I can imagine, and the stuff that I can imagine is easy to do.

Worst:
Saving is weird, but tolerable.

My picture made with The GIMP.
This is the picture I made with The GIMP. Its another really hard to describe program… If nothing else, be amazed with my artistic talent.

So, my parents are sitting in the living room watching Star Trek… Boring! If I didn’t decide to write a review, I’d probably be out there…

Anyway, going over everything is impossible, and I can’t figure it all out anyway… So, I’ll give some of the bits I found fun.

This program is a free Photoshop substitute. It’s originally for Mac, which might explain some of the awkwardness, but there’s an installer for Windows in the downloads section, and it works fine for me. You can make or download extensions and plug-ins, so whatever it doesn’t do, you can make it do… I really don’t have the slightest clue about the finest points of it; it’s pretty crazy, but it’s simple enough to do all of the stuff you see in the picture in a minute or two.

I clicked on a tool, and clicked on my soon-to-be-screen-shot. First, I used the paint bucket… mostly because I’ve used Paint before and it looked familiar. Of course it fills an area with a color, but you can also choose to fill only the foreground, or background. Maybe you want to use one of their patterns, which you can download more of at their site. There’s really a ton of stuff to do that I’m sure somebody that understands this would have no trouble with.

The pencil was my next target, and it does its basic job. You can also choose to have it fade, or use a color gradient… whatever that means… Look at the squiggle next to the explosions in the screen shot. Most of the options (fading, etc) can be used on everything… It’s all completely controlled. You want to have a certain pressure for your airbrush? Or maybe give highlights to your squiggles? Distortion? Done. There’s also a ton of brushes of all different shapes and sizes: X’s, circles, vines…

Those crazy spiral things in my picture are cool, too. I’m really not sure how, but I made a really tiny spiral repeat over and over… and I got those.

There’s a lot more to do with this… perspective changes, smudges… A lot of things I don’t know what to do with, too. Hue-saturation? Posterize? What exactly is Script-Fu? Honestly, you’d have to use it to understand… this is really a lot harder than it looked. The only bad point I’ve noticed is the awkwardness of saving. You can’t just save it to My Pictures. It has to go to a disk or the desktop… or Home, wherever that is.

Whether you’re just bored or you’re a computer-design-person, this can probably do it. I like to think of it as Paint on steroids.

The GIMP can be downloaded at Gimp.org. There’s also plug-ins, help files, etc, there.

Check out some of my other reviews.

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One Response

  1. […] I reviewed GIMP, and it’s basically the most confusing image-related software I’ve ever known… I […]

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