How to Arch Text in GIMP

Written by steven french
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How to Arch Text in GIMP
You can curve text in GIMP by using paths. (Hemera Technologies/ Images)

Text is usually a big consideration in any design work or advertising, and making the text interesting and attention-grabbing is something that designers spend a lot of time thinking about. One way to make the text in your design stand out is to arch or curve the text in interesting ways. GIMP provides a number of tools for working with text and combining it with the alignment tools allows you to create your text in virtually any shape you choose.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Create a text layer in your GIMP image if you have not already by clicking the text tool in the toolbar and clicking and dragging on the canvas to create a text box. A text window will open. Type your text into the box and click "OK" to add it to the box.

  2. 2

    Click the "Move" tool in the toolbar and then click and drag the text up or down to move it out of the way temporarily. The "Move" tool looks like four arrows pointing in opposite directions.

  3. 3

    Click "Windows" in the toolbar at the top of the interface and highlight "Dockable Dialogs." Then click "Paths" to open the Paths window.

  4. 4

    Click the "Paths" tool in the toolbar. The "Paths tool looks like a pen with a line coming out of it. Click at one end of the area where you would like your arched text to be. Then click at the other end. A line will be created.

  5. 5

    Click and hold in the centre of the line and move the mouse cursor upward. The line will begin to curve. Move the path line until you are satisfied with the curve. Then let go of the mouse button.

  6. 6

    Click your original text layer in the Layers palette. Then click "Layers" in the top toolbar and select "Text Along Path." This creates a new path in the Paths palette.

  7. 7

    Click the new path layer to highlight it. Then click the red "Path to Selection" button at the bottom of the Paths palette. This creates a selection from the path that was created.

  8. 8

    Click the colours palette to choose a colour for the text. Then click the "Fill" tool in the toolbar and click inside the selection to fill it with the colour. The "Fill" tool's icon looks like a paint bucket.

Tips and warnings

  • You can fill the arched text with a gradient or pattern by using the options below the tools palette after you click the "Fill" tool.

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