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4.5. Scale Tool

Revision History
Revision $Revision: 1.37 $ 2006-02-18 j.h

Figure 8.49.  The Scale tool in Toolbox

The Scale tool in Toolbox

4.5.1. Overview

The Scale Tool is used to scale layers, selections or paths (the Object).

When you click on image with the tool the Scaling Information dialog box is opened, allowing to change separately Width and Height. At the same time a Preview with a grid or an outline is superimposed on the object and handles appear on corners that you can click and drag to change these dimensions. A small circle appears at center of the Preview allowing to move this preview.

4.5.2. Activate Tool

  • The Scale Tool can be called in the following order, from the image-menu: Tools->Transform Tools->Scale

  • The Tool can also be called by clicking the tool icon:

  • or by using the Shift-T key combination.

4.5.3. Key modifiers (Defaults)


Holding Ctrl will constrain the scale height.


Holding Alt will constrain the scalewidth. If Alt doesn't work, try Shift+Alt.

4.5.4. Options

Figure 8.50.  Scale tool options

Scale tool options

The available tool options for the Scale Tool can be accessed by double clicking the Scale Tool icon.


Affect icons let you choose the element, current layer, selection or path, the tool will transform:

  • The Transform layer lets you modify the size of the selection and its content (the whole layer if there is no selection.

  • The Transform selection lets you modify the size of the selection boundaries.

  • The Transform path lets you modify the size of the current path.

These three buttons associate the remainder of the options to one of those three elements.

[Warning] Warning

Remember that the Affect option persists when you quit the tool.

Transform Direction

Forward (Traditional): The Forward mode will scale the object as one might expect: with an enlarged preview, the object will be rendered enlarged.

Backward (Corrective): Performs transformation in the reverse direction: a reduced object will be rendered enlarged and conversely.


The Interpolation drop-down list allows you to choose the quality of the transformation. For more information about the different methods that can be employed, see the glossary entry Interpolation.


See glossary at Supersampling.

Clip Result

This option will clip the transformated image to the original image size.


Here, Preview is superimposed on the image. The drop-down list gives you four possibilities:

  1. Outline: Puts a frame to mark the image outline, with a handle on each corner. Movements will affect this frame only.

  2. Grid: Puts a grid on the image, with four handles. Movements will affect this grid only.

  3. Image: Here, the preview is a copy of the image superimposed on the image, with an outline. Movements affect this copy and the underlying image appears.

  4. Grid+Image: Both turn at the same time.

Preview type is only for greater convenience. Whatever your choice, result will be the same when you clic on the Scale button in the Scale Informations dialog.

Options with grid activate a drop-list with two options: Number of Grid Lines will allow control over the total number of displayed grid lines. Use the slider to set the number of grid lines. Grid Line Spacing allows control over the distance between the grid lines. Use the slider to set the distance.

[Note] Note

When scaling a path, Preview options are not valid: only Outline is active.


None: No Height/Width constraint will be imposed to scaling.

Keep Height will constrain the scale such that the height of the layer will remain constant.

Keep Width will constrain the scale such that the width of the layer will remain constant.

Keep Aspect will constrain the scale such as the Height/Width ratio of the layer will remain constant.

The Scaling Information dialog window

Figure 8.51.  The Scaling Information dialog window

The Scaling Information dialog window

Original Width/Height

Here, the width and height of the original object are displayed.

Actual Width/Height

Here, you can set width and Height you want to give to the object. The default unit of measurement is pixel. You can change it by using the drop-down list.

Scale ratio X/Y

The origine/actual width/height ratios are displayed here.

Aspect ratio

The actual width/height ratio is displayed here.

  Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License Design by Interspire