Official GIMP Pageswww.gimp.org is the official GIMP site. If you know only one, this site must be this one, especially because it contains links to many other important sites. On the front page, you’ll find news about the latest releases, with links to download pages. The rest of the site contains the major pages mentioned in this section.
wiki.gimp.org is the GIMP Wiki, i.e., a collaborative website about GIMP. It’s intended for developers but helpful to anyone who wants to know about developers’ projects.
bugs.gimp.org is a somewhat esoteric page. It does not explain how to report bugs, but only enumerates the current list of bugs in various versions of GIMP. This page lets you look at the work of the developers and get to know who does what at the present time. To file a bug, take a look at www.gimp.org/bugs/.
developer.gimp.org is about GIMP development. It is not really updated presently, and its main interesting feature is the tutorial about writing a plug-in at developer.gimp.org/writing-a-plug-in/1/index.html.
gui.gimp.org is a working wiki about the GIMP graphical user interface (GUI). This site explains how the work for this GUI is done and in what direction it is progressing.
docs.gimp.org, surprisingly, is not the same as www.gimp.org/docs/. In fact, this link leads to a page that contains links to the manuals of preceding versions, together with the present one. The second link is obviously the most useful and can be accessed directly from GIMP itself. The documentation is currently available in English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Swedish.
registry.gimp.org is the GIMP Plugin Registry, i.e., the site where all plug-ins and scripts built by GIMP users are deposited and available for download. The GIMP Plugin Registry takes the form of a blog, with the most recent entries appearing on the front page. You’ll also find forums, the possibility of comments (reading and making), and above all, a search engine for hunting for a precise plug-in. This website is probably the second most useful site, after www.gimp.org.
Related Official Siteswww.gnu.org is the official site of the GNU project. The GNU project is the oldest free software project in the world, and, in fact, this project founded the concept. Initiated in 1983 by Richard M. Stallman, who desired a Unix-like operating system without any constraint regarding its freedom of use, change, and distribution, the project began by building all the necessary components but the kernel. This last has since been supplied by the Linux kernel. The intended GNU kernel, called Hurd, is still in alpha state. Remember that GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program.
www.gtk.org is the official site of the GTK+ project. This software was initially the GIMP Toolkit, i.e., the widget toolkit used in implementing GIMP. Since its beginning, it has developed to the point of being one of the most important toolkits in GNU/Linux. For example, it is the basis of the GNOME desktop environment and is now object-oriented, hence the name GTK+, and has been ported to other operating systems like Windows and Mac OS X.
www.gimp.org/about/COPYING is the GNU General Public License (GPL), the most widely used license in the world of free software. A software product licensed using the GPL offers the four fundamental freedoms: freedom to run the program for any purpose, freedom to study how the program works and adapt it to your own needs, freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor, and freedom to improve the program and release your improvements to the public so the whole community benefits. Importantly, these freedoms cannot be denied by somebody redistributing the program.
www.gegl.org is the official site of the Generic Graphic Library, a graph-based image-processing framework. In the current version of GIMP, images are represented as arrays of pixels. When you edit an image, you change the pixels, and there is no other way to return to the image’s status than to save it: this is called destructive editing. With GEGL, images are represented as graphs, in which the edges are image components, and nodes are operations on these components. By changing the structure of the graph, you can perform nondestructive editing. Moreover, this representation offers provisions for representing images in higher bit depth than the current 8 bits. GEGL operations are already usable in GIMP 2.8, but only GIMP 2.10 or 3.0 will fully benefit from the incorporation of GEGL.
TutorialsMany tutorial sites are available for GIMP, even if the 12,600,000 links proposed by Google after searching for “GIMP tutorials” are not all relevant. But their quality and relevance varies. Moreover, many are too old to be really useful, since they deal with versions of GIMP older than 2.4. Finding the proper tutorial is probably a matter of luck. Anyway, here are some interesting and generally useful sites, with only very short comments for some of them.
www.gimp.org/tutorials offers an interesting set of tutorials, although most of them are several years old. No recent addition has been made.
www.ghuj.com is rather slow and complicated to use, but it contains many tutorials.
www.pixel2life.com/tutorials/gimp/ has the same problems, but it's supposed to be the largest collection of GIMP tutorials on the We.
www.gimpusers.com/tutorials offers many tutorials, classified in categories.
gimps.de is in English as well as in German and offers tutorials among other content.
gimpology.com is a large tutorial site that is frequently updated.
www.tutorialized.com/tutorials/Gimp has a good amount of usefully categorized tutorials, especially about photo effects.
gimpguru.org contains tutorials that are rather old but good.
meetthegimp.org offers video tutorials. This idea has its fanatics and its detractors. Choose your camp.
Communities and BlogsAlthough several of the GIMP developers have had blogs, only one is presently active and at the very low rate of nine entries in one year:
www.chromecode.com is the blog of Martin Nordholts, who spends much less time on it than on GIMP. On this blog, he features some of the most spectacular changes he has made to the GIMP graphic interface.
Other interesting community sites include:
libregaphicsworld.org is mainly authored by its maintainer, Alexandre Prokoudine, and is organized as a blog. It's a very interesting website about all graphics applications in the world of free software, with announcements, short tutorials, reviews, and so on. Certainly you should have it in your bookmarks!
www.gimpusers.com is a rich site with news, tutorials, and many other features. Beware, however, of its forums, which, for the most part, are simply transcripts of the corresponding mailing lists (see later). If you want to send and read messages on the GIMP users list, for example, use the list directly, and avoid the corresponding pseudo-forum on this site.
gimp-brainstorm.blogspot.com is a rather surprising site. Everybody can contribute with an idea about the GIMP user interface, but the contributions can be only graphic. You must keep silent and you remain anonymous. These ideas can be taken by the GIMP UI redesign team for profit or entirely ignored.
www.gimptalk.com is another rich site, with news, tutorials, forums, and other resources like brushes, photographs, and plug-ins.
gimpgallery.net has about the same purpose as the preceding one, although the site is slightly more complicated to use.
www.graphics-muse.org is Michael J. Hammel’s blog, author of the excellent book “The Artist’s Guide to GIMP, 2nd Edition” (No Starch Press).
www.mmiworks.net/eng/publications/blog.html is Peter Sikking’s blog, principal interaction architect at “m+mi works” and responsible for the GIMP UI redesign.
www.ramonmiranda.com is Ramón Miranda’s blog. He is the creator of GPS, the Gimp Paint Studio, and a contributor of the new presets in GIMP 2.8. His blog is partly written in Spanish.
groups.google.com/group/gimp-brushmakers-guild is the site of the GIMP Brushmakers Guild, a not extremely active group, but one trying to fulfill a very important purpose for GIMP.
gimper.net is another community site with news, help, forums, resources, and so on.
gimpmagazine.org is a brand new GIMP magazine, already downloaded ten thousand times during the first 24 hours of its availability. The first number is really promising.
Plug-ins, Scripts, and Other Additions to GIMP
Many people contribute to GIMP in various ways. We omit here any attempts to define something that would no longer be GIMP.
code.google.com/p/gps-gimp-paint-studio is the site of the GIMP Paint Studio, which is a cleverly built collection of brushes, together with a collection of predefined tool presets. We present the site in Chapter 15.
community.livejournal.com/gimpbrushes could be useful as a community for GIMP brushes, but this site is almost completely inactive.
www.pgd-design.com/gimp proposes a collection of GIMP brushes and patterns.
The following sites describe important and specific plug-ins or plug-in sets:
• ftp://ftp.gimp.org/pub/gimp/plug-ins/v2.6/gap is not a website but an FTP site.
For the documentation, look at the GIMP documentation, or read Chapters 6 and 18 of this book.
• gmic.sourceforge.net is the G’MIC site.
• liquidrescale.wikidot.com describes the Liquid Rescale GIMP Plugin.
• sites.google.com/site/elsamuko describes the Elsamuko plug-in set.
GIMP has five official mailing lists, hosted by lists.xcf.berkeley.edu. Use these rather than their corresponding forums on www.gimpusers.com. Take a look at www.gimp.org/mail_lists.html if you are not familiar with “list etiquette.”
• GIMP user is an active mailing list for GIMP users. Despite what the official site tates, it is not especially Unix-based. You can ask anything you want, but please first look at the documentation as well as the list archives. If your question is well ormulated, you will get several useful answers.
• GIMP developer is also an active mailing list. Despite its name, this list is not used only by developers. It is aimed at them, however, so don’t use this list to ask a simple user question. Use it for suggestions you feel are of general interest or to prepare a bug report.
• GIMP announce has little traffic and has not gotten any new messages since October 2010.
• GIMP Web deals with the GIMP website and has been somewhat dormant for a while.
• GIMP docs deals with GIMP documentation. The people who build and translate it use it, but you can use it to point to an error, for example.
Two IRC channels called #gimp and #gimp-users are also available. Avoid them if you are not accustomed to using IRC. They can be completely dormant sometimes and very active at others.
Other Graphics Applications
www.imagemagick.org is the Imagemagick site. This application is described in Appendix F.
krita.org describes Krita, an application with aims similar to those of GIMP. It is embedded in the KDE-based Koffice suite but also works under GNOME. Its main advantage versus GIMP is that it already accepts 16-bit color depth and multiple color spaces. But it is much less developed in all other aspects.
www.inkscape.org describes Inkscape, a vector graphics editor. Its aim is different from GIMP’s, which is a raster graphics editor. These two applications can, in fact, be considered complementary.
www.blender.org is the official site of Blender, an extremely powerful 3D graphics application, with capabilities for modeling, simulating, animating, and so on. Raster images built with GIMP are frequently loaded into Blender as part of a new project.
al.chemy.org describes Alchemy, an open drawing project. Alchemy is a simple application aimed at exploring new ways of sketching and drawing. A first sketch built with Alchemy can be loaded into GIMP for further development.
mypaint.intilinux.com describes MyPaint, a drawing application available for GNU/Linux and Windows. Its main draw is the many possibilities of defining new brushes, to be used only with a graphic tablet.
Related Graphics Software
hugin.sourceforge.net describes the Hugin panorama photo stitcher, which can be used for building panoramas much larger than GIMP’s capablities.
www.sane-project.org is the official site of the Scanner Access Now Easy (SANE) project, which provides standardized access to most raster scanners.
ufraw.sourceforge.net is the UFRaw website. This project aims at reading and manipulating raw images from digital cameras. We recommend using it from the corresponding GIMP plug-in, but it can also be used as an independent application.
www.darktable.org describes Darktable, a photography workflow application and RAW developer, with many more features than UFRaw. It works on GNU/Linux and Mac OS.
www.mplayerhq.hu describes Mplayer, a general-purpose movie player that can also be used as a batch command for converting between different animation formats. Its library is used in some GAP commands.
cinelerra.org describes Cinelerra, a video editor and compositor application. A similar application is PiTiVi (www.pitivi.org).
Other Graphics SitesThe following sites are sources for interesting examples of computer graphics.
www.cgsociety.org is the site of the The Computer Graphics Society. Without being a member, you can browse the galleries and portfolios and get a good overview of the current work of computer artists.
digitalart.org is another large site featuring computer artwork.
art.gnome.org has a different purpose. It is a gallery of icons, backgrounds, and other artwork for changing, and hopefully improving, the visual appearance of your GNOME desktop.