Anyone use GIMP?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by farmraised, Dec 18, 2015.

  1. farmraised

    farmraised TPF Noob!

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    I have been looking around for a while trying to decide which editing software would best meet my needs as well as my budget. I came across GIMP a couple weeks ago and started messing around with it, however it doesn't seem like it has a very user friendly interface. Does anyone have more experience with GIMP who could attest to whether or not its worth the trouble? Or anyone who may have some tips as to make it easier to use? Thanks!


     
  2. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    It's worth every penny I paid for it. Not once have I ever wished I had PS, LR etc. GIMP does what I need done.
     
  3. cherylynne1

    cherylynne1 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I tried really hard to like GIMP. I watched/read a bunch of tutorials, practiced a lot, but I just couldn't get into it. Like you, it just didn't feel user friendly. I finally gave in and started paying $9.99/month for Lightroom and Photoshop, and I'm so glad I did. Photoshop also still doesn't feel very intuitive, but there are much better tutorials for it. I adore Lightroom, I use it almost every single day and on every photo I process.

    If GIMP is the only thing in your budget, I do think it's probably the best "Photoshop replacement" out there, but just be ready for a lot of hair-pulling until you get the hang of it.
     
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  4. pjaye

    pjaye TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Hated gimp. Tried to use it many times. Gave up
     
  5. jcdeboever

    jcdeboever TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I use it all the time. It's like anything, got to dive into it and get used to it. Tons of videos and books on it. Very powerful software and tons of free plug-ins as well. People that use Linux, this and Darktable are the go to. Gimp is similar to Photoshop more so than lightroom. I tried the online suite (10 bucks a month) and I am sticking with Gimp. I am just used to it I suppose. I can afford Adobe but not switching to Windows.

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    Last edited: Dec 18, 2015
  6. rlemert

    rlemert No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I tend to use Raw Therapee for my initial processing and Gimp for my later processing. This is in large part because I don't take a lot of pictures (I should take more), so I've never really tried to dig deep into either program. I don't know off the top of my head, for example, whether or not Gimp can process Cannon raw images (that's why I start with Raw Therapee), but I haven't figured out how to adjust levels in Raw Therapee.

    I'm sure if I used my camera more I'd take the time to learn at least one of these programs, at which point I'd be able to give you an intelligent response.
     
  7. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    GIMP can only do 8-bit images. It will not work on any format of raw files.
     
  8. Ysarex

    Ysarex Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Hey Sparky -- it's still unreleased and unstable but you can get GIMP 2.9 for Windows now and it does support 16 bit files: Partha's Place

    You probably know that but what the hey. I haven't tried it for Windows but I have it running on my Linux system and I've had no trouble with it.

    Joe
     
  9. 480sparky

    480sparky Chief Free Electron Relocator Supporting Member

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    I tried 2.8, and immediately went back to 2.6.
     
  10. tecboy

    tecboy No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Gimp doesn't have none destructive editing tools. You have to purchase a plug-in for that.
     
  11. TCampbell

    TCampbell Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I used GIMP many years ago - but it's been ages. At that time it's filetypes were extremely limited and restricted to 8-bit only (I was surprised to read Sparky's comment because I thought they supported 16-bit images and frankly I thought they could import RAW by now.)

    Anyway, I quickly realized that to speed along the adjustment process/workflow and also to manage the images that I'd be shooting for years, that I'd want software built for such a purpose and switched to Aperture on the Mac, which fulfilled about 98% of my needs and Photoshop covered the other 2%. Ultimately Apple decided to discontinue Aperture development so I realized that if I wanted ongoing support I'd probably have to switch to Lightroom (which I've done now.)

    I really prefer Lightroom for adjustment of most images and it's purpose built for this more so than Photoshop.

    On a budget, however, you really should look at Photoshop Elements and there are several reasons for this:

    #1 - you can actually "buy" Photoshop elements and it's currently $70 (normally $100). You don't have to "rent" it (the only way to get Photoshop CC is to "rent" it via the Adobe monthly subscription model, but while they call it a "monthly" subscription it's really an "annual" subscription because you cannot rent it for less than a year (they'll let you pay for it by the month.)

    #2 - depending on how much Photography you do, you may eventually want to get the full-blown version of Photoshop. The user interface for Elements is basically the same (Photoshop does more... but it looks the same). Both have a learning curve, but once you learn to use Elements, you'll feel "at home" when you start using the full-blown version.

    #3 - there are TONS of books and online tutorials... TONS... there is no other photo editor for which you can find nearly so much help online.

    #4 - you probably don't need the full-blown version unless your hard core. Most of the editing features that a photographer would need or use are found in Elements. There are features of the full-blown version of Photoshop... such as CMYK color separations that a publishing company relying on offset 4-color printers (something no photographer would own or use). The vast majority of what you'd need is found in Elements. But again...if you ever needed to take something to Photoshop, it would recognize your Elements files.

    With all of this aside... again, I use Lightroom for 98% of what I do. It's much much easier. You mentioned GIMP was not very user-friendly (it has a learning curve) but frankly Photoshop isn't very user-friendly either. Lightroom is vastly more user-friendly. It's technically still possible to "buy" Lightroom 6 (Adobe makes it very difficult to find the link, but if you want it, we can provide you with a direct link). It's about $150. The other way to get it is to subscribe to the Adobe Creative Cloud bundle for photography $10/month with a minimum 1 year subscription commitment and it includes both Lightroom CC and Photoshop CC (it also includes Lightroom Mobile if you have an iPad and a couple other mobile apps for Creative Cloud.)
     
  12. wfooshee

    wfooshee No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    There used to be a Photoshop "shell" for GIMP, called GIMPSHOP, which made it act like and appear on the screen much the same way Photoshop did, with nearly the same menus. That wouldn't overcome its shortcomings as to file types and bit depth, but it makes it easier to ask folks, "Hey, how do I do this?"

    I don't know if GIMPSHOP still exists, or what version of GIMP it's based on, or what you have to do when GIMP updates to keep GIMPSHOP up to date. I see the potential for frustration somewhere in there...

    But really, 10 bucks a month puts the Real Deal very much in reach of just about anybody anywhere.
     
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