When is a photo a painting?

GMX-PhotoPainter 2.0

We recently reviewed an excellent application for converting photos to sketches, AKVIS Sketch. Now we’ve discovered GMX-PhotoPainter 2.0  for turning your image into a full-blown painting: watercolor, oil, crayon, etc. I remember when digital painting software first appeared on the scene and the results were a novelty. But the finished image usually looked like a photograph with a filter slapped on. That’s not what you get here. You control the brushes, strokes, color, pattern and texture. Hell, you begin to think you can actually paint.

With PhotoPainter you’re tempted to touch the screen to see if it’s dry. Add your signature and a frame and even experts will be fooled.

A question arises: when does a photograph deserve to be a painting? Hmm. Might be tempting to turn a blurry snapshot into an oil painting, but a lousy photograph will undoubtedly make a lousy painting.

photo by Derek Pell

When I photographed this motel sign it seemed like a natural for canvas. I treated it to a dose of HDR using Nik HDR Efex Pro and the result came pretty close to what I felt when I squeezed the shutter.

However, the “painted” version below really nailed it for me.

digital painting

If a painted technique enhances the emotions underlying the original image, the viewer will probably be wowed.

PhotoPainter lets you mix various brushes as well as techniques such as watercolor, oil, pen+ink, as in the screen-shot below.

GMX-PhotoPainter 2.0


If you want to add new life to your photos, the tools you need are all here.

Then again, if you just want to have some fun without the stains… dive right in.