On Fri, Apr 24, 2009 at 7:34 AM, DJ <delphit...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> Hi Gimp-user,
> I was trying out Gimp's various Selections, and tools. Clicking on the
> Ctrl, Shift, and Alt keys, before a left-click and after a left-click,
> changes the Action.
Yes -- this is indicated by the tooltips when you hover over the
'replace'/'add'/'subtract'/'intersect' icons, as well as the

> Sometimes there is helpful text in the status bar at the bottom of the
> Image telling the user to try these keys. I find it helpful to have
> the specific Tool's options open too, because it may provide a visual
> indicator what these keys will do (i.e., highlight an option or
> check/uncheck a checkbox).
> I like this feature, and especially the text in the status bar. It's
> very helpful. It really pays, at the beginning, to move slowly, and
> read that text in the status bar after clicking.
> I was wondering, is it pretty much a given that all Tools support Ctrl,
> Shift, Alt, before and after a left-click?
No (although all selection tools do.).
For instance, most paint tools don't support Alt, since there is no
sensible action to map to this (whereas CTRL  = pick color or set
source location, SHIFT = draw line from last point)
Some tools support none of the modifiers at all, for the same reason.
(eg color tools like Curves, Levels, etc.)

> I did checkout the section "Keys and Mouse References" in the
> Documentation. And found the neat Quick Reference
> [http://docs.gimp.org/quickreference/]. Unless, I just missed it,
> none of these mention the mouse and these keys.

Yes. The ctrl/shift/alt behaviour is complex for some of the selection
tools, so doesn't easily fit in a quick reference. OTOH, the
ctrl/shift behaviour for paint tools is simple enough that it should
probably be in the quick reference.
In the main documentation, these actually are documented -- see


If you think this could be made more obvious or accessible, I
encourage you to contribute to the documentation project (see
http://docs.gimp.org/help.html )

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