Steven Powers (SMP): Quick Tip: MyPaint and GIMP Template

Quick Tip: MyPaint and GIMP Template

I have been working with GIMP a lot lately and also playing with MyPaint. I have seen some very good paintings done with MyPaint and I love the feel of the brushes. But I have always been able to control my canvas size and resolution. But MyPaint doesn't allow you to set either from scratch. This is one method that gets around those issues.

I created a template in GIMP and set the dimensions to what I need.  I left the resolution to 72dpi due to the fact that MyPaint will only save to 72dpi (at this time.)  I can get a good print quality as long as the canvas size is larger than I need. For example, an image with 2400x1332 resolution at 72dpi has a canvas size of 33 x 18.5.  Setting the resolution higher than what you plan to use it for offers the benefits of cleaning up brush strokes. The last two things I do is add a visible border around the edges on a separate layer. I use it as a visual reference when I import it into MyPaint. The last thing is to save it to the OpenRaster format (.ora).

Hope this helps,


  1. Thank you for posting this!!

    1. Your welcome. BTW ...GIMP is now currently at version 2.8.4 which has fixed a lot of issues. I always like to get my downloads for GIMP from


  2. Hello, Steve.
    I really like MyPaint.

    But I need a software that can make large prints.

    How can I get that when MyPaint only lets you save the image to 72dpi?


  3. One way is to do the painting at 4x the resolution of the print size.. Think in inches. How large do you need to print? i.e. a 9x12 at 300 dpi is roughly the same as 36x48 at 72dpi. The one draw back is that the brushes will most likely have troubles at that size. So that may require you to move to a commercial application like Corel Painter or Krita, but Krita doesn't work very well on Windows. However Krita does work well on Linux. If you can afford it, I would recommend Corel Painter 12 or maybe 11 if you can find it for sale, which would be cheaper.

    Good luck, Steve

  4. I'll try Krita.
    I'm using Linux anyway.
    MyPaint developers should take that into consideration. In many cases people don't paint for the web (72dpi).

    Thanks, Steve.

  5. Braznyc - to be fair the developers of open-source software don't get paid like commercial developers (if at all) and don't have the same resources. There are also less of them to do the work so many features or fixes take longer to complete. But I am glad you found another program to work with.

    Good luck,