Creating outlined text with the GIMP

I was asked how to create outline text in Gimp by a friend and I thought if I’m already telling one guy how to create outlines I can just use my blog to tell everyone so this is some kind of tutorial showing as the headline already suggests, outlined text.

this is actually one of the easiest and most intuitive features in Photoshop but sadly is a little hidden in Gimp and not really at a place where people might actually look at, it’s part of the selection and path functionality of the gimp. Now the question is how we can use that to create an outline for some text? You’ve guessed right, we have to create a selection of our text snippet.

When you create some text in the Gimp the text tool automatically creates a single layer for this. Now all we have to do is to right click that particular layer in the layer dialog and select “text to selection“. You should now see the text snippet being selected in the main window.

Next step is to create another layer, below the one with the text so we really just get an outline. Even though you just created another layer, the selection of the text should not have changed. If it isn’t selected any more, just repeat the first step and select it again.

Make sure the new created layer is focused.

Now we get to make the actual outline. Move to the main window and go to Edit –> Stroke Selection…

A new dialog will open:

  • set the line width to 3.0 px
  • expand the line style configuration and set both cap style and join style to round (in the middle)
  • make sure anti-aliasing is checked

That’s it. You can experiment with the settings so it fits your taste and remember that you can use this method to basically outline anything not just text.

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2 thoughts on “Creating outlined text with the GIMP

  1. OMG. THANK YOU. I’ve read a bunch of useless, hard-to-understand tutorials while looking for a good one to learn with, and this is my stop. I clicked the right link on the google search results page! :D Thank you so much! :D