I usually use GIMP (the "GNU Image Manipulation Program") for editing photos, changing colors, resizing photos, applying significant effects and more. It is a free software alternative to Adobe Photoshop. It is also quite popular with graphics artists and webmasters who wants to edit digital images. GIMP is not just a Linux specific program. It works on all leading operating systems, i.e., Mac OS X, MS-Windows and Unix variants. However, like many other powerful open source software, GIMP can be difficult to master. There are many options and plugins. So if, you are looking to learn or master the GIMP program, give The Book of GIMP a try.
This book is divided into three parts and has twenty-two chapters:
* Part I: Learning GIMP - The readers will learn the basics of the GIMP in the first chapter and quickly become acquainted with the GIMP user interface, dialogs, toolbox and other essential concepts of GIMP. You will also learn how to perform the necessary tasks with images such as layers and work with a Tablet in GIMP. The second chapter introduces you to the wonderful world of retouching images. Here you will master everyday tasks like enhancing photos, correcting exposures, removing or adding objects, removing red eye and more. I personally never use GIMP for drawing and illustration. The third chapter presents essential tools for colorizing a drawing and creating shapes. The fourth chapter covers logos and textures used on both web and print letterheads. The fifth chapter tells you how to create unique images using multiple photographs for composite images. You can even use GIMP to make animations. Gimp has capabilities for creating animated logos and advertisements for a website. You will then learn the basic concepts of animation in Chapter Six. You will learn how to make more complex animated stuff in Part II. The seventh chapter shows you how to separate noise from images, i.e, correcting image distortions, improving color balance and enhancing visibility. The eighth chapter teaches you how to create a website using GIMP.
* Part II: Reference - This part covers GIMP features and tools in detail, including the GIMP interface, basic GIMP commands, menus, keyboard tricks, its displays, layers, colors and different modes, sections, path tools, masks and channels, digital artdrawing tools, transformation tools and more. I found the chapters on filters quite amusing. GIMP comes with more than 120 filters. You will learn how to apply filters like blur and image enhancement filters. At the end, you will learn more about obtaining and printing images, scanning images, and how to manage different image formats. The information and coverage are good here, except for writing plugins and the script chapter.
* Part III: Appendices - The final part of the book offers six appendices. You will learn about the vision, image perception, image representation, tips and hints for exercises, online resources, FAQs about GIMP, installing GIMP ,and finally more about batch processing and using various tools and command prompt techniques. All the appendices are well worth reading and studying further.
I spent almost a month reading and mastering the GIMP tools and techniques presented in this book. The illustration offered helped me learn about many new features offered by GIMP Version 2.8. I managed to create various effects, textures, logos, animated GIFs and digitally edited images like a Pro using nothing but this free and open source software. I highly recommend this excellent all-in-one reference book to all GIMP users.
* Title: Book of GIMP.
* Author(s): Olivier Lecarme and Karine Delvare.
* Publisher: Nostarch Press.
* Length : 656 pages.
* Targets : Web designers, web masters, graphics artists, and new users who want create and edit digital images.
* Rating: 4/5
* Disclaimer: Nostarch press sent us a review copy.
* Purchase online at Amazon (Kindle Edition)
+ Excellent book to use to build quality full-color images.
+ Easy to read.
+ Clear explanations.
+ Good collection of exercises with solid tips in selected exercises.
+ Requires no previous GIMP or image editing experience.
- No GIMP v2.8 DVD.
- Very little GIMP-Python and scripting/script extension coverage.
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