Image Module

The Image module provides a class with the same name which is used to represent a PIL image. The module also provides a number of factory functions, including functions to load images from files, and to create new images.


The following script loads an image, rotates it 45 degrees, and displays it using an external viewer (usually xv on Unix, and the paint program on Windows).

Open, rotate, and display an image (using the default viewer)

from PIL import Image
im ="bride.jpg")

The following script creates nice 128x128 thumbnails of all JPEG images in the current directory.

Create thumbnails

from PIL import Image
import glob, os

size = 128, 128

for infile in glob.glob("*.jpg"):
    file, ext = os.path.splitext(infile)
    im =
    im.thumbnail(size) + ".thumbnail", "JPEG")


Image processing

Constructing images

Registering plugins


These functions are for use by plugin authors. Application authors can ignore them.

The Image Class

An instance of the Image class has the following methods. Unless otherwise stated, all methods return a new instance of the Image class, holding the resulting image.

The following example converts an RGB image (linearly calibrated according to ITU-R 709, using the D65 luminant) to the CIE XYZ color space:

rgb2xyz = (
    0.412453, 0.357580, 0.180423, 0,
    0.212671, 0.715160, 0.072169, 0,
    0.019334, 0.119193, 0.950227, 0 )
out = im.convert("RGB", rgb2xyz)


Instances of the Image class have the following attributes:


The file format of the source file. For images created by the library itself (via a factory function, or by running a method on an existing image), this attribute is set to None.

Type:string or None

Image mode. This is a string specifying the pixel format used by the image. Typical values are “1”, “L”, “RGB”, or “CMYK.” See Modes for a full list.


Image size, in pixels. The size is given as a 2-tuple (width, height).

Type:(width, height)

Colour palette table, if any. If mode is “P”, this should be an instance of the ImagePalette class. Otherwise, it should be set to None.

Type:ImagePalette or None

A dictionary holding data associated with the image. This dictionary is used by file handlers to pass on various non-image information read from the file. See documentation for the various file handlers for details.

Most methods ignore the dictionary when returning new images; since the keys are not standardized, it’s not possible for a method to know if the operation affects the dictionary. If you need the information later on, keep a reference to the info dictionary returned from the open method.

Unless noted elsewhere, this dictionary does not affect saving files.