Opening image files is easy with GIMP. Just click on the top menu item “File” then “Open,
Or you can press the CTRL and O keys on your keyboard at the same time. This brings up the dialogue box shown in the picture on the left. It is a simple matter of clicking on the directory structure on the left side of the box and finding your images. JPG images show a preview automatically in the right hand column of the box. Other formats previews require a mouse click once they have been selected. (Note the GIMP will not read or open RAW files.) You can either double click the file or press the “Open” button at the bottom of the dialogue box. You can have multiple files open. Just go back to the “File” – “Open” menu and select the next image file.
Some pictures previously processed in other software packages have different colour schemes, and GIMP will ask you if you want to keep the colour profile as-is or if you want to convert to the “standard” colour or “sRGB” working space. I typically convert them as this colour space is native to GIMP.
One nice feature I like in GIMP is that, when you have multiple files open, you can switch quickly to a new image in the workspace by clicking on the preview just above the workspace. Closing images that you don’t need any more can be removed by clicking the “X” next to the preview.
Once you have your image in the workspace it is easy to zoom and navigate. You can find the Zoom tool in the top left hand “docker panel”. Notice the “Tool Options” below the tool docker panel. You can change the action of the zoom tool by pressing the radio button “Zoom out” or “Zoom in” The keyboard quick action is to hold down the CTRL key while zooming, this will alter your zoom action from + to – .
Another handy feature for navigating around your image is the Zoom Display Button on the right side of the image workspace. Warning: Don’t use the similar icon on the tool docker! This is for relative adjustment of layers and is an advanced tool!