Category Archives: Linux

GIMP Guides: How to Get the Most Out of a Great, Free Graphics Application

GIMP Guides: How to Get the Most Out of a Great, Free Graphics Application

by Sam Dean – Feb. 28, 2013Comments (1)

If you find yourself spending more time on graphics these days, you’re not alone. We’re all taking more pictures, creating graphics for visual appeal in online properties and more. For real graphics muscle, it’s essential to get familiar with GIMP, one of the very best open source graphics applications. OStatic has covered GIMP on a number of occasions, and the active community that drives the application forward continues to deliver improved versions. In this post, you’ll find our latest, updated collection of free resources for getting started with GIMP and becoming an advanced user.

What if you haven’t used GIMP at all?  There are lots of good guides to GIMP online that will still get you going from being a beginner to an intermediate/advanced user. Here are several good one to start with:

It’s a very good idea to start with an introduction to exactly what GIMP is, which is covered in the following Introduction to GIMP (PDF).

Once you understand the application and have downloaded it, DocStoc’s Thirty Second Guide to GIMP can get you going quickly and you can also make good use of the Official GIMP Quick Reference Sheet (PDF).

There are many good books on GIMP, but you may very well find everything you need in the way of instruction in Grokking the GIMP. The book is available in a free HTML tarball in addition to a printed copy that you can buy. I highly recommend looking at the links in the contents. This free, online book takes you through layers, filters, resizing tips, masks, blending colors, case studies and way more than that. Many of the tutorials will give you what you need to perform advanced tasks. (For many more free books on open source software titles, check this post.)

One of the best aspects of GIMP is that it has a thriving community of plug-in developers. There are plug-ins for granular tasks such as new ways to edit images, plug-ins for more flexible graphics printing options, and more. The registry of plug-ins is here.

Keyboard shortcuts always come in handy with graphics programs, and many Photoshop users employ them. In the link at the bottom of this page, you’ll find useful shortcuts for GIMP.

On GIMP’s own site, you’ll find many tutorials.  With them, you can create floating logos, learn how to do red eye removal in photos, make vignettes out of photos, and more. There are lots more community-driven and video tutorials at Many of the tutorials there are complemented by useful comments and tips from readers. This set of tutorials is also very rich and varied.

Of course, don’t forget about GIMP documentation. There’s plenty of it, and you’ll find it available in many languages.

 Finally, be aware that GIMP is just one of the many open source programs out there for graphics, and you can use a number of the others with GIMP to give you maximum flexibility. Take a look at our latest overall graphics resources collection for help in this area. 




  • graphics
  • GIMP
  • Illustration

Randy Clark uses OStatic to support Open Source, ask and answer questions and stay informed. What about you?

Thanks for the links I have been trying to get into Gimp and needed to get some good documentation.

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A Fat Stack of Bodhi Linux

When I first started preparing Bodhi ISO images almost two and a half years ago I set out with the goal of providing a clutter free operating system powered by the latest Enlightenment desktop. We call what we do “minimalist” meaning it doesn’t come with a whole lot by default. This ideology isn’t for everyone, though. Thankfully, the power of choice is something that greatly empowers free software development.

Today, I would like to offer a bit more choice for Bodhi users. I would like to share with you all my “friends and family” version of Bodhi Linux. You can grab the ISO image for this fat stack of Bodhi on source forge here. I call it my “friends and family” disc because when I am pressed for time I can’t always sit down and install all the extra software “normal” people need to use their PC. This image allows me to skip the installing software step after I install the operating system.

This ISO image is something I’ve been working on and using as an install media for my non-personal systems for awhile now and I think it is finally in a state that I am happy sharing it. It is simply a Bodhi 2.x branch live/install CD powered by a Linux 3.5 kernel and the latest E17.1 Enlightenment desktop. It comes with a bunch of software pre-installed that should keep most people happy:

This is a 32bit disc image and no I will not be preparing a similar 64bit disc. I intend this disc for home systems, for which I recommend 32bit operating systems. Users installing from this disc can get support on the Bodhi Forums just as if they had installed from the normal disc.

~Jeff Hoogland

Slate 7 Android tablet from HP for $169

In less than two months, April (2013) to be exact, you will be able to buy a Slate 7 Android tablet from HP for $169 USD.

Announced at the ongoing Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Spain, the Slate 7 Android tablet is HP’s first consumer-level tablet device since the failed webOS-powered Touchpad.

But for that price, what will you be getting?

Nothing spectacular. The Slate 7 will be powered by an ARM Dual Core Cortex-A9 processor gunning at 1.6 GHz. That’s not in the same class as current Android tablets most of which are powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 3 processor, but for $169 USD and a 7-inch screen, what did you expect?
Slate 7 Android tablet

Here are the other features that will ship with the Slate 7 Android tablet:

  • All the Google services you can handle – Gail, Google Drive, Google+ Hangouts, Google Play, etc
  • Android 4.1 (Jellybean)
  • 8 GB of on-board storage
  • Micro-USB port
  • SD card slot
  • 1024 by 600 screen resolution
  • Dimensions: 10.7mm by 197mm by 116mm and weighing in at 13 ounces
  • Beats Audio technology
  • Rear (3 MP) and front VGA camera
  • Support for HP’s ePrint service

Sadly, no HDMI port. The Slate 7 will come in two colors – silver and red. To be notified when this device becomes available, visit here.
Slate 7 Android tablet Red


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