Newbie. change image to CYMK

Hi All
New to GIMP and maybe not looking in the right place.

I’ve worked out how to change the dpi, admit to being not very IT knowledgeable, and export /save but how do I change images to CYMK and then save/export.

Thank you

Hi @Jude, and welcome.

Things will be a bit easier if you search for CMYK: gimp cmyk at DuckDuckGo

Have fun!
Claes in Lund, Sweden

Which OS are you using.

The development Gimp 2.99.16 has some ability to export a CMYK image although I would avoid jpeg export (unless it is now fixed)

I use Gimp 2.10.34 (kubuntu) and the CYAN plugin see: there are versions for Win \ linux \ macOS Imports and exports.

It does work as a Gimp plugin and also stand-alone if you want to use it that way.

This a bit on the old side, it was for a Windows user CMYK color mode Gimp 2.10

Remember, Gimp is a RGB editor, save your work as that. Final operation is the CMYK export

An easier alternative is Krita which has the conversion built in.

First counterquestion: why do you want an image to be CMYK?

And then: why did the person specifically asking for a CMYK file not provide you with an exact list of settings for their particular printer?

Short summary: there is no such thing as “a CMYK file” – CMYK is a very specific format meant for one printer and only that. There are by now a large number of printers and print houses that use a “standard” but that works only for generic run-of-the-mill printing projects.


Because Ingram requires CMYK colour space and PDF/X-1a:2001 or PDF/X-3:2002. They seem to be accepting PDF V1.7 with SRGB colour, but errors may occur, and your book cover may have colours printed that are not as intended.

If they can give you a color profile of CMYK the only difference HAS TO BE that they can cut down on their processing time.

And without giving you the EXACT color profile they expect and the EXACT way to do the conversion they are putting themselves into the “full on hack we have no clue” department.

So … asking for data in “CMYK” profile is just reducing the stress on their machines. Which is fair game, but detailed and totally idiot proof instructions are a must. If not available: find a print shop that can give you that.

Might be worth trying Krita

to be fair to Gimp photographic printing tends to be RGB

I was going to post a question about monitor calibration but realised in time that I had switched on the wrong computer and that was causing the problem