A gallery of 130+ Gimp filters/effects examples

Summary: This page shows over 130 examples of what you can accomplish with filters and other effects in Gimp. If you know how to use Gimp and just want a reference page of what the effects look like, I hope these examples are helpful.

Gimp filters

There are so many filters available with Gimp — and no simple way to preview them all — that I forget what they all look like. To help with this problem, I created this page as a “Gimp filters cheat sheet” to help remind me of what all the filters look like.

As a result, this page shows over 130 examples of Gimp effects that are applied one at a time to a photograph I took of Denali when I lived in Talkeetna, Alaska. I put the name of each filter/effect to the right of each image.

Note that these are “one at a time” effects; you can combine filters together to achieve an infinite number of possible effects. Also, most of these effects have different controls that you can adjust; in most cases here I have just used the default values.

The original image

Before showing all the different Gimp effects, here’s the original image:

Artistic effects

These examples show the effects you can find under the Filters > Artistic menu:

artistic > apply canvas

artistic > cartoon

artistic > cubism

artistic > gimpressionist

(There are many Gimpressionist options.)

artistic > glass tile

artistic > oilify

artistic > photocopy

artistic > predator

artistic > softglow

artistic > van gogh

artistic > weave


These are examples of the filters you can find under Filters > Beautify > Beautify.

beautify > art > color pencil

beautify > art > life sketch

beautify > art > relief

beautify > art > sketch

beautify > black and white

beautify > fashion > astral

beautify > fashion > pick light

beautify > gradient > beam gradient

beautify > gradient > rainbow gradient

beautify > gradient > sunset gradient

beautify > invert

beautify > lomo > recall

beautify > lomo > retro

beautify > smart color

beautify > smart color (50) + strong contrast (20)

beautify > studio > abao

beautify > studio > cold blue


These are examples of the filters you can find under the Filters > Blur menu:

blur > blur

blur > focus blur

blur > pixelize (3 pixels)

blur > pixelize (rectangular selection)

blur > gaussian blur

In the next image I (a) quickly selected the trees, (b) inverted that selection, then did a Gaussian blur on the background. This is a really nice technique to use when you have people in the foreground and stuff in the background that you don’t care about. The result in this case is that the trees look sharp, and the background is blurred:

gaussian > blur (background blur only)


This is an example of an effect under the Gimp Filters > Combine menu:

combine > filmstrip of several images


These images show the effects under the Filters > Decor menu:

decor > coffee stain

decor > fuzzy border

decor > old photo

decor > perspective reflection

decor > rounded corners

decor > slide


These images show examples from under the Gimp Filters > Distorts menu:

distort > apply lens

distort > blinds

distort > curve bend

distort > emboss

distort > erase every other row

distort > iwarp (move down)

distort > iwarp - swirl

distort > lens distort (main +45)

distort > lens distort (main -45)

distort > lens (edge, negative)

distort > mosaic (many options)

distort > mosaic (squares)

(I should have made the next two images “transparent” PNGs. The lines/stripes are because I did not do that.)

distort > page curl

distort > polar coordinates

distort > ripple (many options)

distort > shift horizontal

distort > value propagate (many options)

distort > video, striped

distort > waves (many options)

distort > whirl and pinch

distort > wind (many options)

Edge detect

These examples show the effects under the Gimp Filters > Edge menu:

edge > detect edge

edge > detect neon

edge > detect sobel


generic > dilate

generic > erode

Light and Shadow

These examples are under the Filters > Light and Shadow menu:

light-shadow > gradient flare, bright star

light-shadow > gradient flare

light-shadow > lens flare

light-shadow > lighting effects, default

light-shadow > lighting effects, drop shadow

light-shadow > lighting effects, more glowing, less shiny

light-shadow > lighting effects, sparkle

light-shadow > lighting-effects, supernova

light-shadow > lighting-effects, xach effect


These examples show the effects under the Filters > Map menu:

map > bump map (many options)

map > displace, cartesian

map > displace, pinch, polar smear

map > fractal trace

map > illusion (2)

map > illusion (7)

map > make seamless

map > map to object, cylinder

map > map to object, sphere

map > resynthesize

map > small tiles

map > warp (default)


These examples show the filters under the Filters > Noise menu:

noise > hsv noise

noise > hurl (low values)

noise > noise generator, gauss (13)

noise > noise generator, laplace(9)

noise > noise generator, lorentz(2,5)

noise > noise generator, photons

noise > pick (higher values)

noise > pick

noise > rgb noise

noise > slur (5 times)

noise > spread(6)


These example show the effects under the Filters > Render menu:

render > clouds > difference clouds

render > clouds > fog

render > clouds > plasma (as a layer)

render > clouds > solid noise (as a layer)

render > lava (as a layer)

render > lava

render > line nova (more options)

render > nature > flame

render > pattern > grid

render > pattern > jigsaw

Rip border

These examples show the effects under the Filters > Beautify > Border > Rip Border menu:

rip-border > 1

rip-border > 4

Simple Border

These examples show the effects under the Filters > Beautify > Border > Simple Border menu:

simple-border > 18

simple-border > 2

simple-border > 25

simple-border > 27

simple-border > 3

simple-border > 5

simple-border > 6

Texture Border

These examples show the effects under the Filters > Beautify > Border > Texture Border menu:

texture-border > 1

texture-border > 8

Gimp Script-Fu

Paul Sherman at gimphelp.org has kept many of the Script-Fu scripts running. (You have to install these scripts manually, and I’ll write about that process soon.) I run into errors when running some of the scripts with Gimp 2.8 on Mac OS X, but these scripts work well:

effects > reflection

photo > pastel portrait

sketch > line sketch

sketch > pastel sketch

sketch > pencil sketch

sketch > pencil sketch(2)

sketch > quick sketch

sketch > roy lichtenstein

sketch > synthetic edges

sketch > toned line art


There are a million things you can do with the tools in Gimp. Here is just one example (so far), showing the effect of the Smudge tool across the trees:

tools > smudge

More examples

If that’s not enough to whet your appetite (and offer a little inspiration), click the following link (or image) for even more examples of Gimp filters and effects.


I hope these examples of Gimp filters are helpful. I’ll add more filters over time, especially the Script-Fu filters I just downloaded. In the meantime, if you use Gimp and can’t remember what all of those filters do, I hope these examples are helpful.