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 GIMP: Freeware - an interesting, free alternative 
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 10:20 pm
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Post GIMP: Freeware - an interesting, free alternative
Anybody else tried using this freeware program? I just started playing with it and so far am quite impressed. It seems to be a nice alternative to expensive programs such as Photoshop. A couple shots I worked on last night:

Paphiopedilum Norito Hasegawa x P. malipoense:

Image

Dendrobium Stardust 'Fire Bird':

Image

If you are interested, here is a link to review and download it GIMP.

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Botany Boy


Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:48 pm
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Fantastic orchid blooms, Tom
I'll have a look at the freeware when I have some time
Pete


Mon Mar 16, 2009 10:54 pm
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Thanks Pete!

A couple more shots made with GIMP - looking good!

Image

Image

Here is a tutorial vid showing how to set up GIMP.

Come on, isn't anybody out there a photo nerd? This is great stuff AND IT IS COMPLETELY FREE!

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Botany Boy


Tue Mar 17, 2009 10:25 pm
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It would be instructive if you would post the photos before GIMP, so I could compare them with the photos after GIMP.

Otherwise, I can't differentiate between the quality added by GIMP and the quality added by the fact that you're a better photographer.

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Tue Mar 17, 2009 11:27 pm
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David Matzdorf wrote:
It would be instructive if you would post the photos before GIMP, so I could compare them with the photos after GIMP.

Otherwise, I can't differentiate between the quality added by GIMP and the quality added by the fact that you're a better photographer.


David,

I could try to simulate what an unaltered shot looks like, but I still would have to manipulate it to make it viewable. Large format jeg files come out from my camera at over three thousand pixels wide, so resizing is necessary. I guess what I'm saying is that the minute you press the shutter button, the manipulation begins. Photography is that way, a trick of the eye. I endeavor to show reality, but with an artistic twist, whatever that may be for a given shot. The basic manipulations start with resizing the image, sharpening it up, adjusting the light levels, adjusting contrast/brightness, and perhaps color balancing. These are all basic manipulations that lead to a better photo. So, if you have a digital camera you may want to play with GIMP to see how you can enhance your shots. For me photography is an exploration and as such a learning process that is tons of fun. If you are so inclined, I highly recommend downloading GIMP and playing with a few of your images to see what it can do. Kind of like taking a new car out for a spin - you've gotta drive it to know what it can do!

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Botany Boy


Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:24 am
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Here is the same shot as above, but I resized. More or less that's how it looked at the start.

Image

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Botany Boy


Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:45 am
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Good suggestion David and thanks Tom for showing us the magic of the sharpening tool.

I use Photoshop Elements which is considerably cheaper than its big brother should I dump that now for GIMP?

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Wed Mar 18, 2009 6:52 am
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Charles Wychgel wrote:
Good suggestion David and thanks Tom for showing us the magic of the sharpening tool.

I use Photoshop Elements which is considerably cheaper than its big brother should I dump that now for GIMP?


I wouldn't suggest stopping the use of anything, I'm just alerting folks to the existence of GIMP. Very likely it has more capability than Photoshop Elements. Give it a whirl and see what you think.

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Botany Boy


Thu Mar 19, 2009 2:52 am
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Sorry, this is a bit out of date now, I don't often look at this forum! Yes, the Gimp is a wonderful graphics tool, I have been using it for more than four years and not only is it free, it is also superior to Adobe Photoshop! I know this is a form of heresy to a lot of people, but it's true.

Tom, you didn't say if you were using it on a Windows based system or on Linux, there is quite a difference in feel because Gimp was written for Linux systems, and although it's available for Windows, it is blisteringly fast on Linux, in comparison.

Congrats on the pictures by the way, very impressive!
Kind Regards,
Mike


Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:43 am
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Mike, actually I'm a Mac user at the moment, but I have friend who is lobbying hard for me to go Linux. Maybe one day. I don't like the way big companies exert so much pressure for you to use their products and so Linux is definitely the most free path open. I used to hate Microsoft, but now it is obvious to me that Apple is no better, in fact you could even argue they are worse about some things.

Ewen, I have used both Photoshop and now GIMP and all I can say is that I'm very impressed with the functionality of GIMP given that it is a freeware program. Honestly, from what I can see, GIMP is every bit as functional, so what the hell! Of course it you like a certain product then stay with it. As I said before, photography is fun for me and so any new avenue to search down is frosting on the cake, especially when it doesn't cost me one yen.

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Botany Boy


Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:59 am
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Post Questions about Gimp
1. Can Gimp do automatic stitching, blending and balancing for the creation of panoramas?

2. Can Gimp import and use the preset filters built for Photoshop?

3. Can Gimp work on Raw files before outputting to jpeg?

Thanks for any input.

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Thu Apr 09, 2009 4:06 am
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