Course description

Learn the GIMP from the Ground Up 

In this course I'll show you how to use the Gnu Image Manipulation Program (GIMP), a free Photoshop like program, to produce professional looking, high quality graphics on a budget. The course uses the creation of book covers for self-publishing as the basis for demonstrating the use of the program. The techniques demonstrated can be used to create stunning graphics for any purpose including display on the Web.  

GIMP Easily Explained:

Excellent course with detailed explanations on how to use GIMP to create fabulous book covers. Thank you!

-Maria Oquendo

This course provides material suitable for the absolute beginner and includes information on how to install all required tools and resources.  It then goes on to show you how to use those components to produce unique, professional looking, and high quality graphics suitable for use as book covers for self-publishing.  The course includes information on graphic composition that can be used to cause the most important elements of your image stand out.  

Note: I demonstrate the use of the GIMP on a PC running Microsoft Windows 7. If you're a Linux or Mac user, the GIMP is also available to you, and information in this course beyond installation is fully applicable. 

Sell More of Anything with Professional Looking Graphics  

Though you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, the truth is that most people do exactly that.  Why not produce the best impression you can by displaying stunning graphics mixed with text.  Whether you're selling books or some other product, graphics that can capture the customer's attention will give you a leg up in differentiating yourself from your competition.

This Course Includes Everything You Need to Know to Become Proficient with the GIMP

This course includes 29 lectures, over two hours of material, divided into the following major categories of information:

  • Installing, staring, and stopping the GIMP
  • GIMP window layout
  • Creating a simple book cover
  • Working with layers and selections
  • Loading fonts and using text effects
  • Buying and manipulating inexpensive images
  • Creating colored boxes
  • Using layer masks
  • Stroking a path
  • Putting it all together
  • Learn to Create Stunning Book Covers and More  


Why focus on book covers? The course benefits from having a specific focus and I'm the most familiar with using the GIMP to create book covers.  Besides, you only need to know the fundamentals of using the GIMP to produce book covers. Don't worry, you can still create amazing images for the Web and beyond using the basics of the GIMP.  

A Great Cover Course:

Bite sized lessons that are clear and concise on how to use The GIMP to create ebook covers for the KINDLE. Very easy to follow.

-Bronwyn Wilson 


This course uses a combination of presentation slides and screen capture to show you how to use the GIMP to produce book covers specifically.

Expect to spend several days to weeks digesting all the information provided in this course.

Start Today!

Silly as it may seem, your book cover is the first characteristic of your book that is likely to distinguish you from the crowd. Why not spend some time learning how to produce a quality, professional looking book cover for your self-published work using free tools and inexpensive professional quality images?

I'll see you in the classroom,

---Brian 


What Students Will Learn:

  • Install the GIMP on Your PC
  • Use the GIMP to produce a basic book cover
  • Use advanced concepts to produce professional looking book covers
  • Use tips and suggestions to maximize our design and implementation


Prerequisites:

  • A PC running Windows or Linux or a Mac running MacOS
  • Some free memory and disc space to accommodate the GIMP and your images


Target Student:

  • Anyone seeking an introduction on how to produce high quality graphics using the GIMP
  • Self-published authors needing to produce professional looking, high quality book covers on a budget

Course curriculum

  • 2
    Creating a Simple Book Cover
    • Introduction to Creating a Simple Book Cover
    • Creating an Empty Book Cover
    • Loading Images From the Internet
    • Adding Text
    • Saving Your Book Cover
    • Creating a Simple Book Cover Section Workshop
    • Creating a Simple Book Cover Section Project
    • Conclusion to Creating a Simple Book Cover
  • 3
    Working with Layers and Selections
    • Introduction to Working with Layers and Selections
    • Defining and Manipulating Layers
    • Selecting Images and Image Components
    • Applying Effects to Selections
    • Copying, Cutting, and Pasting Selections
    • Supplement: More on Layers
    • Working with Layers and Selections Section Workshop
    • Working with Layers and Selections Section Project
    • Conclusion to Working with Layers and Selections
  • 4
    Loading Fonts and Using Text Effects
    • Introduction to Loading Fonts and Using Text Effects
    • Text Manipulation
    • Loading Fonts
    • Using Fonts
    • Blurring and Drop Shadows
    • Loading Fonts and Using Text Effects Section Workshop
    • Loading Fonts and Using Text Effects Section Project
    • Conclusion to Loading Fonts and Using Text Effects
  • 5
    Buying and Manipulating Inexpensive/Free Images
    • Introduction to Buying and Manipulating Inexpensive/Free Images
    • Pixabay: An Early Warning!
    • Buying Inexpensive Images Off the Internet
    • Manipulating the Images
    • Using the Clone Tool
    • Buying and Manipulating Inexpensive/Free Images Section Workshop
    • Buying and Manipulating Inexpensive/Free Images Section Project
    • Conclusion to Buying and Manipulating Inexpensive/Free Images
  • 6
    Creating Colored Boxes
    • Introduction to Creating Colored Boxes
    • Making Colored Boxes
    • Sampling Colors
    • Using Color Gradients
    • Displaying Text Over Colored Boxes
    • Creating Colored Boxes Section Workshop
    • Creating Colored Boxes Section Project
    • Conclusion to Creating Colored Boxes
  • 7
    Using Layer Masks and Paths
    • Introduction to Using Layer Masks and Paths
    • Two Applications of Layer Masks
    • Stroking a Path Around Text
    • Circular Text
    • Making Text Follow an Arbitrary Path
    • Using Layer Masks and Paths Section Workshop
    • Using Layer Masks and Paths Section Project
    • Conclusion to Using Layer Masks and Paths
  • 8
    Book Cover Design Theory
    • Introduction to Book Cover Design Theory
    • Branding
    • Satisfying Genre Expectations
    • Use of Color
    • Use of Images
    • Cover Layout
    • Making Your Text Pop
    • View Your Work in Thumbnail Size
    • Analyze Peer Book Covers
    • Book Cover Design Theory Workshop
    • Book Cover Design Theory Section Project
    • Conclusion to Book Cover Design Theory
  • 9
    Putting It All Together
    • Let's Create a Book Cover, Shall we?
    • Making a Space Book Cover
    • Making a Book Cover with Colored Boxes
    • Downloading the Sample Covers
  • 10
    Favorite Tricks and Common Errors
    • Favorite Tricks Pt. 1
    • Favorite Tricks Pt. 2
    • Favorite Tricks Pt. 3
    • Common Errors
  • 11
    Recreating My Personal Favorite Book Covers: 2017 Course Extension
    • A Review of My Past Book Covers
    • Using Pixabay for Free Images
    • Reinterpreting Existing Popular Covers
    • Stretching My GIMP Muscles
    • Reinterpreting My "Symphony" Book Cover Pt. 1
    • Reinterpreting My "Symphony" Book Cover Pt. 2
    • Two Technique Book Cover: Silhouettes and Dark Desaturated Backgrounds
    • Drunken and Layer Mask Text -- Very Cool!
  • 12
    2017 Amazon Book Cover Reinterpretation Challenge
    • Section Introduction
    • Challenge #1 from Kelly
    • Challenge #2 from Saundra Pt. 1
    • Challenge #2 from Saundra Pt. 2
    • Challenge #3 from Harshad Pt. 1
    • Challenge #3 from Harshad Pt. 2
    • Challenge #4 from Joanne Pt. 1
    • Challenge #4 from Joanne Pt. 2
    • Challenge #5 from Tania Pt. 1
    • Challenge #5 from Tania Pt. 2
    • Challenge #6 from Janine Pt. 1
    • Challenge #6 from Janine Pt. 2
    • Challenge #7 from Janine Pt. 1
    • Challenge #7 from Janine Pt. 2
  • 13
    Question and Answer
    • How to Fill a Layer with Color
    • Why a Blur May Not Work
  • 14
    Conclusion
    • What Now?

Meet your instructor!

Brian Jackson
Author, Publisher and Educator


I was born the middle of the last century in Los Angeles, California.  

After moving for a time to the Silicon Valley, I graduated from Humboldt State University amid the redwoods of Northern California.

Two weeks after graduation I was working as a computer systems programmer for Lockheed Missiles and Space (LMSC) back in the Silicon Valley.  Two months after that and I was married as I have been happily  ever since (for 38 years).

After 14 years at Lockheed I moved from working on IBM mainframes to using PCs running the Unix operating system and encountered a thing called the Internet.  Cisco Systems seemed to be the right place to work, so I joined the company as their 650th employee.  Eleven years later Cisco had grown to over 20,000 employees.

I retired at the age of 48 and instantly became bored!

Throughout my professional career I'd always enjoyed both writing and providing technical training.  So, I attended creative writing classes at my local junior college and began to write.

I managed to write and self-publish a handful of books, but things didn't take off until my wife, Melanie Jackson, an established author with a New York company, left traditional publishing to join me in self-publishing.

In 8 years, from 2010 to now, Melanie and I have made half-a-million dollars self-publishing well over 100 books.  I also managed to record a pair of audiobooks for Amazon and Audible sale.

By 2014, our rapid rise to Kindle fame had already dwindled.  I decided to pursue my second passion of giving training presentations.

Since 2014 I've published over 40+ online video training courses for training sites such as Udemy and SkillShare. My goal is to provide low cost high quality screen cast based educational material focusing on my areas of expertise; namely, self-publishing and book cover design using the GIMP.  I continue to expand my video training catalog while focusing some energy on resurrecting our flagging book sales using various marketing techniques.  Finally, I spend a portion of my time maintaining both my website and my wife’s website, which was developed using WordPress.

I currently live in the beautiful California wine country with my lovely wife and Butterscotch the cat.

I'll see you in the classroom,

---Brian

Take this course today!

"GIMP 2.8/2.10 for Beginners: Free Book and eBook Covers"

Bundles including this course!