4.4. Paths Menu

The Paths dialog menu

The Paths menu can be brought up by right-clicking on a path entry in the list in the Paths dialog, or by choosing the top entry ("Paths Menu") from the Paths dialog Tab menu. This menu gives you access to most of the operations that affect paths.

Path Tool

Path Tool is an alternative way to activate the Path tool, used for creating and manipulating paths. It can also be activated from the Toolbox, or by using the keyboard shortcut B (for Bezier).

Edit Path Attributes

Edit Path Attributes brings up a small dialog that allows you to change the name of the path. You can also do this by double-clicking on the name in the list in the Paths dialog.

New Path

New Pathcreates a new path, adds it to the list in the Paths dialog, and makes it the active path for the image. It brings up a dialog that allows you to give a name to the path. The new path is created with no anchor points, so you will need to use the Path tool to give it some before you can use it for anything.

Raise Path

Raise Path moves the path one slot higher in the list in the Paths dialog. The position of a path in the list has no functional significance, so this is simply a convenience to help you keep things organized.

Lower Path

Lower Pathmoves the path one slot lower in the list in the Paths dialog. The position of a path in the list has no functional significance, so this is simply a convenience to help you keep things organized.

Duplicate Path

"Duplicate Path" creates a copy of the active path, assigns it a unique name, adds it to the list in the Paths dialog, and makes it the active path for the image. The copy will be visible only if the original path was visible.

[Note] Note

Note that copying a visible path will make the path "disappear" from the image display: this happens because paths are drawn in XOR mode, which has the curious property that drawing an item twice "undraws" it. The paths are still there even though you don't see anything: if you move one of them, you will be able to see both.

Delete Path

Delete Path deletes the current selected path.

Merge Visible Paths

Merge Visible Paths takes all the paths in the image that are visible (that is, all that show "open eye" symbols in the Paths dialog), and turns them into components of a single path. This may be convenient if you want to stroke them all in the same way, etc.

Cesta do výběru; Přidat do výběru; Ubrat z výběru; Průnik s výběrem

These commands all convert the active path into a selection, and then combine it with the existing selection in the specified ways. ("Path to Selection" discards the existing selection and replaces it with one formed from the path.) If necessary, any unclosed components of the path are closed by connecting the last anchor point to the first anchor point with a straight line. The "marching ants" for the resulting selection should closely follow the path, but don't expect the correspondence to be perfect.

Selection to Path

This operation can be accesssed in several ways:

  • From an image menubar, as Select->To Path

  • From the Paths dialog menu, as Selection to Path.

  • From the Selection to Path button at the bottom of the Paths dialog.

  • From the "Selection to Path" button in the Tool Options for the Path tool.

Selection to Path creates a new path from the image's selection. In most cases the resulting path will closely follow the "marching ants" of the selection, but the correspondence will not usually be perfect.

Converting a two-dimensional selection mask into a one-dimensional path involves some rather tricky algorithms: you can alter the way it is done using the Advanced Options, which are accessed by holding down the Shift key while pressing the Selection to Path button at the bottom of the Paths dialog. This brings up the Advanced Options dialog, which allows you to set 20 different options and variables, all with cryptic names. The Advanced Options are really intended for developers only, and help with them goes beyond the scope of this documentation. Generally speaking, Selection to Path will do what you expect it to, and you don't need to worry about how it is done (unless you want to).

Stroke Path

This operation can be accesssed in several ways:

  • From an image menubar, as Edit->Stroke Path

  • From the Paths dialog menu, as Stroke Path.

  • From the Stroke Path button at the bottom of the Paths dialog.

  • From the Stroke Path button in the Tool Options for the Path tool.

"Stroke Path" renders the active path on the active layer of the image, permitting a wide variety of line styles and stroking options. See the section on Stroking for more information.

Copy Path

"Copy Path" copies the active path to the Paths Clipboard, enabling you to paste it into a different image.

[Tip] Tip

You can also copy and paste a path by dragging its icon from the Paths dialog into the target image's display.

Paste Path

Paste Path creates a new path from the contents of the Path Clipboard, adds it to the list in the Paths dialog, and makes it the active path for the image. If no path has previously been copied into the clipboard, the menu entry will be insensitive.

Import Path

"Import Path" creates a new path from an SVG file: it pops up a file chooser dialog that allows you to navigate to the file. See the Paths section for information on SVG files and how they relate to GIMP paths.

Export Path

Export Path allows you to save a path to a file: it pops up a file save dialog that allows you to specify the file name and location. You can later add this path to any GIMP image using the Import Path command. The format used for saving paths is SVG: this means that vector-graphics programs such as Sodipodi or Inkscape will also be able to import the paths you save. See the Paths section for more information on SVG files and how they relate to GIMP paths.