I'm currently using GIMP to add text captions and lines into a screenshot. The problem is that once I finished one caption I couldn't add any more lines (using the Paint Brush tool). If I close the GIMP window and reopen it, I can add more lines with no problem, but as soon as I start adding captions these dotted boxes appear and I can no longer add any more lines. How do I overcome this problem?

1 Answer 1


It is very likely that these "boxes" are layers, text layers in this case.

Assuming this is it, the following might be the answer:

Layers have a finite size in GIMP, and this size doesn't change automatically. If you want to paint somewhere, then you have to make sure that:

  • there is a layer at this location
  • this layer is active in the layers dialog

This is the layers dialog (also part of the default UI layout):

GIMP layers dialog

If in doubt, you can create a new layer of the same size as the image. Layers are a fundamental concept of many more complex image manipulation tools, so you should familiarize yourself with them - almost anyone you are going to ask for advice will assume you know how to use them in GIMP.

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