Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Painted Ladies in Ubud

Here are five shots I took of women queueing up to go into the market shrine in central Ubud, Bali. To coin a cliche, the scene looked like a painting. So, to emphasise that concept I thought I'd try adding a paint effect to the images to see if that enhanced the image. It did but it needed a little extra tweaking as well. I used a program called Auto Paint on an iPad (thanks for getting me started on that Bev!). Unfortunately this app offers no user input other than for you to choose the style (Cezanne, Benson, Van Gogh or Aquarell) and apply a rough protect mask to areas that you don't want to totally obliterate. The mask sorta works, but not very well so I took the resulting (tiny) output file and stretched it back over the original image (thank goodness for interpolation). Because the Auto Paint version is very textured the resampling does not look nearly as rough as it would if I'd chosen to use a regular picture.
Finishing the effect off required some fiddling using the Eraser Brush to cut through the paint layer (on top) to reveal the photo details beneath. A final contrast tweak was then applied to get the 'paper' tones looking good. When I have the time I shall print these onto some textured watercolour paper I have for my inkjet printer.

This is a short video on how it works on the iPad, then I demonstrate how to fix it up better using Photoshop or Photoshop Elements.


  1. Really nice technique. I'll have a go at the local market too.