GIMP for Beginners: Design Free Book Covers: Self-publishing
4.3 (168 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
8,803 students enrolled
Wishlisted Wishlist

Please confirm that you want to add GIMP for Beginners: Design Free Book Covers: Self-publishing to your Wishlist.

Add to Wishlist

GIMP for Beginners: Design Free Book Covers: Self-publishing

GIMP graphic design: Windows, Mac & Linux: Free book & eBook covers for self-publishing: Amazon Kindle KDP & CreateSpace
4.3 (168 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
8,803 students enrolled
Created by Brian Jackson
Last updated 6/2017
English [Auto-generated]
Current price: $10 Original price: $40 Discount: 75% off
5 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • 7.5 hours on-demand video
  • 1 Article
  • 7 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I 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 implemention
View Curriculum
  • A PC running Windows or Linux or a Mac running MacOS
  • Some free memory and disc space to accommodate the GIMP and your images

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?

Who is the target audience?
  • 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
Compare to Other Graphic Design Courses
Curriculum For This Course
60 Lectures
4 Lectures 11:50

This course introduction provides an overview of the course objectives and my computing environment.

Preview 05:15

In this lecture I demonstrate how to install the GIMP on Windows 7.

Preview 02:36

Learn to start the GIMP, the screen layout presented by the GIMP program, and how to exit the GIMP.

Preview 02:45

Some additional information from the cutting room floor.

Supplement: Sample Book Covers
Creating a Simple Book Cover
4 Lectures 09:55

Create an entirely white image the correct dimensions and resolution for a book cover.

Creating an Empty Book Cover

In this lecture we cover how to load images off the internet and load them onto a cover. Warning: Only use to which you own the rights, such as purchased images, for your book covers.

Loading Images From the Internet

Explains how to insert a simple title and author name over the top of the image.

Adding Text

Learn how to save your book cover for later manipulation using the GIMP and for display on the Web.

Saving Your Book Cover
Working with Layers and Selections
5 Lectures 27:26

In this lecture we introduce layers, an important element when it comes to composing complex images from simple components.

Defining and Manipulating Layers

How to use the image selection tools.

Selecting Images and Image Components

Review how to apply various visual effects to selected regions of an image.

Applying Effects to Selections

Learn how to select, copy, cut, and paste graphical selections.

Copying, Cutting, and Pasting Selections

Here is some additional information on the use of layers focusing on the Layers Window menu.

Supplement: More on Layers
Loading Fonts and Using Text Effects
4 Lectures 17:28

Let's look at what can be done to make your text look special.

Text Manipulation

In this lesson we review how to search the internet for free fonts and load them into the GIMP for usage on our book covers.

Loading Fonts

Explore how to make use of the fonts you downloaded.

Using Fonts

How to make text standout by placing drop shadows beneath.

Blurring and Drop Shadows
Buying and Manipulating Inexpensive Images
3 Lectures 14:45
Pixabay: An Early Warning!

This chapter outlines purchasing inexpensive images from for use on your book covers.

Buying Inexpensive Images Off the Internet

This lecture explains some of the manipulations that can applied to images once they're selected.

Manipulating the Images
Creating Colored Boxes
4 Lectures 11:39

Learn how to create rectangles of color our your book covers.

Making Colored Boxes

Learn to use the GIMP Color Picker tool to sample colors from images or other websites.

Sampling Colors

Learn to use the color gradient tool to produce boxes and background containing color gradients.

Using Color Gradients

Use colored boxes behind text layers to make the text standout on your book cover.

Displaying Text Over Colored Boxes
Using Layer Masks
1 Lecture 07:17

Learn how to use layer masks to produce image and text effects.

Two Applications of Layer Masks
Stroking a Path
1 Lecture 02:27

Learn how to outline text by stroking a path.

Stroking a Path Around Text
Putting It All Together
4 Lectures 41:18

As a final project we create a simple yet pleasing book cover by combining images with text and colored boxes.

Let's Create a Book Cover, Shall we?

Making a Space Book Cover

In this lecture we create yet another video to stress the use of colored boxes on a book cover.

Making a Book Cover with Colored Boxes

Some final information on downloading the sample covers in XCF format.

Downloading the Sample Covers
Favorite Tricks and Common Errors
4 Lectures 47:07
Favorite Tricks Pt. 1

Favorite Tricks Pt. 2

Favorite Tricks Pt. 3

Common Errors
4 More Sections
About the Instructor
Brian Jackson
4.5 Average rating
2,937 Reviews
58,202 Students
32 Courses
Author/Publisher 32 Courses, 2929+ Reviews, 58,000+ Students

Born in Los Angeles, California, in the middle of the last century, I have always wanted to be a writer. After twenty-five some odd years spent working in the computer industry in the heart of the Silicon Valley, first for Lockheed as a Systems Programmer and later for Cisco Systems as a test tool developer, I managed to retire early and begin my next career as a self-published author.

Along with writing and publishing my own novels I also publish the works of my wife, Melanie Jackson. During the past four years I’ve published well over 100 books in paperback and eBook formats. Oddly enough this includes eBooks on how to self-publish books and how to create professional looking book covers using the GIMP. I’ve also recorded and distributed a pair of audiobooks available for purchase on Amazon and Audible. Finally, I spend a portion of my time maintaining both my website and my wife’s website, which was developed using WordPress.

My latest endeavor, begun in July of 2014, is to record training courses for distribution via Udemy. My goal is to provide low cost high quality screen cast based educational material focusing on my area of expertise; namely, self-publishing and book cover design using the GIMP. As time permits, I plan to expand my catalog to cover Web page development and Udemy course preparation.

I currently live in the beautiful California wine country with my lovely wife, published author Melanie Jackson, and Butterscotch the cat.