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Image Enhancement With iPhoto

by Lee Fritch

Hi Maryann,

Enjoyed reading (and saving, as always) your latest on using the computer to explore compositions from photos. I am glad to see that others are doing this. Some purists might look down on it, but I see nothing wrong with using it to ideate before doing the actual painting. It would be another matter to enhance the finished work for submission to a show, or as a sale teaser.....that's a no no.

Note: All images can be clicked to see the larger original version that was submitted.

Raw Lonesome Pine

I have attached three photos to show you how I have done that for my painting Lonesome Pine which made the OWS traveling show in '07. I use iPhoto+ also.....and find it plenty sufficient to do as much as I need right now.


Photo #1 (RawLonesomePine) is a shot of a pine tree in the Canaan Valley of West Virginai...taken many falls ago at one of my favorite Plein Air spots. It is very Grey and washed out...I mention that because I have found that the worse the photo is...the more I can do with it to pump up the image for painting.

Lonesome Pine

Photo #2 (Canaan2) is the result of working with iPhoto to flip the image left to right ( I am always amazed at how different that can look to my right side brain), adjust color balance and hue, and light and contrast.

Photo #3 (LonesomePine) is the resulting watercolor ...almost a full sheet. It was done in one-go and just fell together! That only happens with only one in 50 paintings...but I love when it happens.

I plan to do many more paintings following this approach, and am curious if after several more I will be able to ideate more creatively without the help of the computer.

Thank you for you "Tips"......they are so helpful.

Best to you,

Lee Fritch (To visit my website, click here)

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Sep 29, 2015
great NEW
by: Victor

Iphoto is a great software for the painters who want to learn more about how to become a great painter specially very good at drawing the images. The essay writing and the painting tips following the water color and the light on the image will attract a lot of people. You just did an excellent painting with these pictures.

Jul 25, 2008
great use of iPhoto!
by: Mary Ann Boysen

Thanks, Lee, for sharing your painting and techniques with iPhoto. I can see that you used a lot of your "artistic license" in painting the scene. The colors were beautiful. Isn't it fun to see what these programs will do to a photograph?

I have even given some thought to polarizing some images in Photoshop and doing some semi-abstract paintings, but can't seem to get going on that project. Some people would say, "Gee, I like your other style better." !!

iPhoto is a great tool now that you can sharpen, straighten, change the exposure, and even change the temperature of the image, etc.

Keep up the good work. I like your website too!

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