Troubleshooting GIMP plug-ins on macOS

Getting Python plugins working in GIMP on macOS can be a bit tricky.

GIMP on macOS uses a bundled Python environment, often located within its application directory. This environment can have subtle differences in module structure and import behavior compared to system-wide Python installations.

Here are some steps you can try:

1. Make sure the plugin is executable.
From the macOS command terminal:
$ chmod +x /path/to/your/plugins/

2. Make sure GIMP supports Python:

  • Open GIMP, go to Filters > Python-fu. If you see a submenu with entries like “Console,” Python support is enabled. If you don’t see this submenu, GIMP isn’t recognizing Python.

3. Check what version of Python GIMP is using:

  • From the GIMP Python console (Filters > Python-fu) run:
    >>>import sys

    You may be using an older version of python like:
    2.7.18 (default, Sep 24 2023, 17:50:42)
    [GCC Apple LLVM 14.0.0 (clang-1400.0.29.202)]

4: Check the path to the Python Executable

  • From the GIMP Python console (Filters > Python-fu) run:
    >>> print(sys.executable)
    It may return something like:

5: Check GIMP Error Console

  • To display the GIMP Error Console select Windows > Dockable Dialogues > Error Console

6: Launch GIMP from the macOS Terminal.

  • Open the Terminal app.
  • Change to the GIP App directory: $ cd /Applications/
  • Run GIMP with verbose argument: $ ./gimp -v