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GIMP Bible 1st Edition

29 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470523971
ISBN-10: 0470523972
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The most current and comprehensive desktop GIMP reference you'll find!

Create dazzling digital graphics using GIMP

Edit photos, paint, create animation, batch process—you can do it all with the free, open-source GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) and the instruction in this comprehensive GIMP Bible. This valuable book first introduces you to GIMP's interface and tools, then clearly shows you how to manage an entire production pipeline and produce high-quality images. If you're an artist, photographer, Web designer, or animator using GIMP, this is the book you need to succeed.

  • Find out what GIMP can and can't do—and master all of its tools

  • Learn to use layers, paths, channels, and colors effectively

  • Start painting in GIMP with improved paint dynamics

  • Master a slew of filters and masks and see how to automate tasks

  • Animate by hand or add effects to video with the GIMP Animation Package

  • Intelligently resize images with Liquid Rescale

  • Create custom effects with scripting and other advanced techniques

Companion Web Site
Find the latest GIMP updates, as well as support materials for the book's tutorials and supplemental tutorials at The site also includes links to the most current versions of GIMP plug-ins, tips on how to install them, and a blog where you can ask questions pertaining to the GIMP Bible.

  • Digital images are sampled into a grid of pixels
  • Control image desaturation with the Channel Mixer
  • Apply textures painted in GIMP to a character model
  • Use GIMP to create high-quality images
  • Learn all features, functions, and tools
  • Master default filters and common plug-ins

About the Author

Jason van Gumster is a production artist at Hand Turkey Studios, where he specializes in using open-source tools to produce animations and visual effects for television, film, and video games. In addition to GIMP, he is well-versed in a broad spectrum of open-source tools including Blender, Inkscape, Cinelerra, and Scribus.

Robert Shimonski is a senior-level systems and network engineer with over 15 years of production experience working with enterprise applications, systems, and solutions. He is an expert in Web and digital media.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 768 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (March 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470523972
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470523971
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #698,595 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

41 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Roland Wostl on December 2, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is nothing short of excellent. It covers every tool and function of GIMP in detail, and it even includes treatments of a number of plug ins. It also covers features of GIMP 2.8, which has not yet been released. In addition, there is a companion website you can access for associated material, updates and corrections.

I thought at first I could learn GIMP by reading the manual associated with the program and watching how-to videos on Youtube. After struggling a while I bought this book. Now I realize how naïve I was. GIMP has far more features and functionalities than I imagined, and to learn it on my own, or even with the help of Youtube turtorials, would be a cumbersome way to proficiency.

The GIMP bible covers it all, and it got me off dead center. It handles fundamental concepts as well as advanced utilities - I'm glad I bought it. I'm still not very good using GIMP, that will take a bit of work and practice, but I'm starting to use the program creatively, using the GIMP bible as a resource when I get stuck.

I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to become proficient with, or master, GIMP.
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By StormChild on March 3, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Before you purchase this guide, ask yourself how serious you are and how much time you are willing to invest in learning the GIMP process. This is not a cheat sheet. It is definitely a Bible of work. There is an enormous amount of information presented in the GIMP Bible. This is both the good news and the bad. Not for the faint of heart, this massive volume can be intimidating. I cannot stress enough that this is a serious and involved look at what GIMP offers and should be considered a text book.

The same things that make this an overwhelming text make it also a valuable resource. Like a massive dictionary or encyclopedia, the GIMP Bible offers a mountain of information at your fingertips. Most, maybe all, of the information can be found online, and most of us utilize online tutorials. However, if you like to have a paper copy you can turn to, like I do, this book gives you instant access to more answers about GIMP than you realized you had questions for.

I do have one major complaint in the use of B&W images in the examples. (Really???) They're absolutely a useless waste of ink in most cases. I understand that color images would have cost more to print, but considering the instructional purpose of the image content, it would have been nice to be able to actually see what the examples needed to show.

I can't give this volume less than 4 stars, because the information is vast. The author's attention to detail is admirable.

I can't give it 5 stars, because the textbook layout is sometimes stress-inducing and the images are basically worthless.

Buy this book at once if you are committed to studying the ins and outs of GIMP. Buy it if you want a physical reference to supplement what you already know. If you prefer a quick and easy-to-understand answer with glossy, color image yourself the money and look up a topic specific video tutorial online.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A.Crouton on January 25, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am about half way through this book. It clearly goes through all the different tools and filters of the book explaining every option. For this reason it makes a great reference book. I will keep it at hand every time I am using the program.

The reason I only gave it three stars is because it is short on tutorials. I was hoping more examples of how to use the tools they talk about, not just explaining what they do. This book does have some tutorials, and I have learned some really cool things, but I was hoping it was going to be packed.

The second thing is it is in black and white. How useful are pictures talking about the color tones of a photograph when it is in black and white? Not very. This was huge in my opinion.

I do not regret the purchase of this book as it has been really helpful and I will continue to use it as a reference point.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Maria Oralia Britt on July 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am very pleased with this book. I have been using Photoshop for many years and have grown tired of the large hole in my wallet every time I needed to upgrade to a new version. I have known about GIMP for a couple of years but had difficulty using this program. Finally, with the GIMP Bible I am able to use GIMP to it's fullest. This bible is exactly what I needed to convert from Photoshop to GIMP. It gave clear explanations of all GIMP's abilities from the simplest to the most complex. I would highly recommend this book to anyone how is tired of paying a small fortune for Photoshop and would like to use the opensource application GIMP.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Georgie Girl on July 13, 2011
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Having saved a few hundred dollars on Photoshop when I downloaded GIMP, I sprang for this book to help me create some simple web graphics. This is something I've never done before. The book is concise and clear with its instructions - exactly what I needed. It's definitely a keeper.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Otownboy on October 29, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
GIMP Bible is overwhelming, but not invincibly so for a beginner. It's like the old question, "How do you eat an elephant?". You eat it one bite at a time, and so it has been for me with this book. I bought the hard copy but almost regret not buying digital. I say that because as I read I write myself notes about how I might use something for my project or in general. Kindle and other electronic book formats are rich with notes search capabilities. I miss them in this instance. Sorry, just a personal musing. The book is very basic in its structure, and prior to buying it, I noted some of the criticisms in reviews complaining that the book was repetitious. I can understand the criticism IF you are a graphic artist professional as you want to move quickly to specific techniques/capabilities. I was looking to be educated which this does in a five star manner. The repetition is intentional so that your absorption of concept and jargon is being continually reinforced as you progress to more and more complex features and concepts. And be sure to open GIMP and practice those features as you read about them. It will help you to reinforce learning and ensure that your grasp of the material is complete. Clearly I'm a fan!
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