Looking for photo editing for dummies

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Looking for photo editing for dummies

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Downloaded GIMP and watched an hour of GIMP tutorials and am now as confused as when I began.
Looking for a program that will enhance, sharpen and pull detail from shadow. It would be awesome if it had an “auto” selection. Or an easy-to-use slide scale. But better than the one that comes with Windows. I’m still in search of a program designed for dummies. Thanks for making GIMP free. But would very much appreciate a much, much, much simpler version.

[cid:image003.png@01D6591D.3AF162F0]
Was able to enhance my photo of a hummingbird somewhat on GIMP but then it took 20 minutes to find a way to get it to my desktop and I still don’t know how I did it.



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Re: Looking for photo editing for dummies

J. Leslie Turriff
On 2020-07-13 13:55:18 Thomas Alex via gimp-user-list wrote:
> Downloaded GIMP and watched an hour of GIMP tutorials and am now as
> confused as when I began. Looking for a program that will enhance, sharpen
> and pull detail from shadow. It would be awesome if it had an “auto”
> selection. Or an easy-to-use slide scale. But better than the one that
> comes with Windows. I’m still in search of a program designed for dummies.
> Thanks for making GIMP free. But would very much appreciate a much, much,
> much simpler version.

        As I am pretty much a dummy when it comes to modifying photos with Gimp, I
suppose that I am qualified to answer with some dummy-type suggestions. :-)
        For adjusting colour, contrast, gamma, etc., the tools in the Color menu are
pretty good (considering that I usually just tinker around a bit with various
of them until I get something acceptable.  For colour images, the Color
Balance, Hue-Saturation and Brightness-Contrast tools work well. The Color
Balance tool lets one adjust the shadows, midtones and highlights separately,
while the Hue-Saturation and Brightness-Contrast tools work on the image as a
whole.
        The Curves tool allows one to adjust the colours by bending the diagonal
line.  Click on the line to add an adjustment node, then move it
up/down/left/right.  Add additional nodes to tweak the levels.  Note that one
can move the end points of the line up/down/left/right as well.  One can also
adjust individual colour channels (red/green/blue/alpha).  One can save the
setting for use on other images.
        The Levels tool allows one to adjust the colours, contrast, etc. another way,
by sliding the pointers back and forth.
        The Auto tools might be what you're looking for; they probably do what the
ones above do automatically, but might not produce what you're expecting
(Gimp doesn't do AI :-) ).

        For smoothing or sharpening images, use Blur, Enhance, Noise etc. found in
the Filters menu.  Some of these, e.g. Noise, work best on colour images if
the image is split into separate colour layers (Colors -> Components ->
Decompose/Recompose).  I haven't done much with these.
>
> [cid:image003.png@01D6591D.3AF162F0]
> Was able to enhance my photo of a hummingbird somewhat on GIMP but then it
> took 20 minutes to find a way to get it to my desktop and I still don’t
> know how I did it.

        If you use File -> Save, Gimp will save your work as an *.xcf file, which
contains all of the settings that Gimp knows about your file.  To write it to
disk in its original or another "external" format, you must use File ->
Export As or File -> Overwrite.  (This is a "feature" that was added to Gimp
a while back, causing a bit of confusion for everyone but the
developers. :-) )

        I hope this is helpful.

Leslie
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