Please excuse the simplicity of my question as I'm new to image editing:

I have an image with some text and I would like to change the color of that text. I don't have the original file; I only have this image file. The text is currently white, and I'd like to change it to red or black, while keeping the + symbol yellow. I've posted a screenshot of my view in GIMP as well as the actual image file.



I somehow thought that I would be able to add a layer of red or black on top and the text would magically fill in and change colors, but that didn't work.

I did take a look at this question: How can I change the color of images in GIMP?

I'm went to colors --> hue-saturation but I could only change the color of the + symbol; "mathematics" stayed white. I tried changing other colors settings, but couldn't get the white in my image to go red or black. The darkest I could get was dark grey, but that's because I decreased the lightness. I could not get it to go solid red or solid black.

I'd appreciate and suggestions and/or solutions. Thank you!

5 Answers 5


1- Isolate the '+' symbol in your image using a free hand selection (Ctrl+wheel to zoom in/out to help you selecting), ctrl+x to cut your selection, ctrl+v to paste it into another layer.

2- Go to your layer containing the 'mathematics' text, lock alpha channel for this layer, now use the bucket tool to fill with any color you want, it will only affect the text inside the layer and not the entire layer thanks to the lock alpha option.


You could create a multiply layer with clipping mask (I'm not sure how it's done with GIMP but in Photoshop you could set a layer to clip the one below by clicking it while holding the Alt key) over the original image and color the whole layer black.

Then place the separate yellow cross image in a new layer over the logo where the cross should be.

  • You'd use layer masks in GIMP - and they are one possibility to isolate the text and the plus from each other. Basically, they provide a way to follow the answer by anarkhya, but without any cutting and pasting - all you need is a copy of the layer, one mask each that hides the plus and the text pixels, respectively, and the alpha locking and filling remain the same (the fill can also be done by dragging in a color from the color areas, btw). Aug 10, 2015 at 20:04

Select the Color Picker Tool, pick the color you want from the image and then copy the variables to a note, then paste them to the color you want.


Seeing as the background is already transparent, first use a rectangle select around the text. Next, unselect the portion of the yellow plus symbol that would invariably have been selected by using Ctrlwhile using the mouse to select it; the Ctrl key will make it be subtracted from the previous selection. Then use the 'Curves' tool from the 'Colors' menu to selectively drop out some red, green, or blue as required.

Had the background not already transparent, then you could use the 'Color to Alpha tool'. Once that is done, if the text were not already white, you could then make it white by either using 'Invert Colors' (for black text) or by using 'Hue-Saturation' for any other colour.


You can try to use "select by color" tool to select the what you want, and filled the selection with other color to cover the origin text

  • It can be a bit hard to get that selection exactly right - especially the partially selected pixels. Aug 10, 2015 at 20:00

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