Get Involved

How You Can Help

GIMP is Free Software and a part of the GNU Project. In the free software world, there is generally no distinction between users and developers. As in a friendly neighbourhood, everybody pitches in to help their neighbors. Please consider the time you give in assistance to others as payment.

Ways in which you can help:

  • program new features,
  • report bugs (errors in the program),
  • test existing features and provide feedback,
  • add documentation,
  • translate GIMP or documentation to your own language: contact the respective translator team for your language
  • write tutorials,
  • improve this website,
  • make artwork for GIMP,
  • let people know you used GIMP for your artwork,
  • give away copies of GIMP,
  • help others to learn to use GIMP, etc.

As you can see, anyone can help.

Development Status

The team is currently busy working on v3.0. This will be a port of GIMP to GTK+3, much newer and better supported version of the user interface toolkit.

Most of GIMP’s source code is related to the user interface, so this port is a major undertaking, especially since we shall break API and refactor numerious parts of the program.

We still need to port more plugins to become GEGL operations. If you are willing to help with that, please refer to the Porting filters to GEGL page to see what you could work on.

To get a better understanding of where the project is heading to, which features are planned etc., please visit the Roadmap page.

Bug Reports

GIMP is not a bug-free application nor is any other application so reporting the bugs that you will encounter is very important to the development, it helps the developers to make GIMP more stable and more bug free.

You don’t have to be a developer or a everyday user to report bugs. It can be hard to report a bug the first time you try it out but don’t just quit the whole bug report if you think it is hard. Instead, look at the bugs page you will find some very good help about this.

Web Development

Creating websites that contain useful information is very important. It is actually just as important as doing bug reports. A website contains a lot of information that is needed for the development to move on and it also contains information that will help the public to understand what the application is all about.


GIMP uses git as its revision control system, and the GNOME Foundation hosts all of our code repositories:

New contributors should first introduce themselves on IRC (the #gimp channel at and/or the relevant mailing lists:

This way you can announce the changes you intend to make, ask questions, and discuss which changes would be best. It’s generally better to focus on one thing at a time. Contributing to a software project for the first time is always the hardest part, which is why we’re here to help each other. There are also websites to give you a good look at how hacking is being done in GIMP.

GIMP has a complex code base, and newcomers that might not be sure where to start should have a look at our list of bugs for newcomers:

The site you should keep updated with and the site that is updated all the time with new development help guides is located at If you have GIMP installed at the moment then there are some files you should look at in the source code that might help you a little.

  • INSTALL (Contains most up-to-date information on building GIMP from source code)
  • HACKING (Contains a lot of information that you need to know if you want to start coding)
  • README (The main README for GIMP which should be read by everyone)
  • README.i18n (The internationalization README which should be read by translators)

Once you’ve figured out what to do, though, be bold and get to work!

How To Submit Your Changes

When you’re ready, we suggest to create a fork of the repository GitLab Fork Repository, make your edits to the fork and submit a GitLab Merge Request. Make sure you select the item of “Allow commits from members who can merge to the target branch.”, this will allow the developers to do additional changes or to give feedback in a simpler way.

The GIMP community is a friendly one, but it probably is still worth saying this: Try not to take critiques personally. We all just want GIMP to be the best that it can be. Once approved, your edits will be merged into the code base, making you an official GIMP contributor. And if you keep up the good work, not only will this process get easier with practice, your administrative privileges in GIMP development will also increase too.

GIMP RSS feeds

GIMP developers The main GIMP development website

GEGL An image processing library based on GObjects

babl A dynamic, any to any, pixel format translation library

GNOME GIT GNOME GIT source code repository

Latest Changes in Code

The Unstable GIMP page lists the lastest source code commits to the unstable branch of GIMP.