How to Use GIMP to Make Someone Seem Skinny

by Naomi Bolton
Oli Scarff/Getty Images News/Getty Images

It is no secret that magazines use professional image editing software such as Photoshop and CorelDraw to retouch photos of people, but you can alternatively use free software such as GIMP to achieve similar results. To alter a photo to make someone appear skinnier than in real life, use GIMP's IWarp filter. Depending on the extent of the modification, you can use the tool to make someone lose a few pounds or turn them into a skinny caricature.

Step 1

Launch GIMP and open the photo you want to transform.

Step 2

Right-click the image name on the "Layers" palette and select "Duplicate Layer" from the context menu. This enables you to work on the duplicate layer without altering the original image directly.

Step 3

Click the thumbnail of the duplicate layer on the Layers palette to ensure that you are working on the correct layer.

Step 4

Click "Filters" from the menu bar, and then select "IWarp" from the "Distorts" submenu.

Step 5

Click the "Shrink" radio button on the "Settings" tab, and then click the "Bilinear" check box. The shrink modifies the image and the bilinear option smooths the effect to make it look more realistic.

Step 6

Click the "Adaptive supersample" check box for better image quality.

Step 7

Click and drag the image in the preview section of the IWarp window to apply the shrink effect. The deformation is applied in the direction that the cursor is dragged in, so for the best results, click slightly to the left or right of the body parts or limbs of the person, and then drag the cursor slightly in the opposite direction.

Click "OK" once you are satisfied with the results in the preview window to apply the effect to the photo.


  • Information in this article applies to GIMP 2.8. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.


  • The larger the changes you make with the IWarp filter, the more distorted the background of the image will be. To prevent this, either use a photo with a uniform background color or use the eraser tool to remove the affected background areas on the duplicate layer.


  • Gimp: IWarp
  • GIMP Bible; Jason van Gumster and Robert Shimonski

Photo Credits

  • Oli Scarff/Getty Images News/Getty Images

About the Author

Virtually growing up in a computer repair shop, Naomi Bolton has held a passion for as long as she can remember. After earning a diploma through a four year course in graphic design from Cibap College, Bolton launched her own photography business. Her work has been featured on Blinklist, Gameramble and many others.

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