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Old 05-04-2015, 12:54 PM
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CSForest CSForest is offline
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Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

I've been painting in real oils my whole life. Recently I decided to try going digital for a number of reasons. I have Photoshop CS5 and have been playing around with the mixer brushes and bristle brushes, trying to achieve something resembling traditional oil painting but am not having much luck. Real oil paints, when dragged over a painting surface, leave little bits of rough edges and holes, even on a fairly smooth surface. Photoshop brushes seem to blend everything to be too smooth, or leave straight edges of the brush stroke that are obviously digital. I can't seem to find a way to get a little "roughness" or texture in the strokes. I'm relatively new to this so perhaps I'm not using the right brushes, or the right blending modes or something. Anyone have some tips for getting digital brush strokes to look more like real brush strokes?
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Old 05-04-2015, 04:18 PM
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Delofasht Delofasht is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

The best photoshop tip I could give for this is to get a different program.

I'm half kidding here, no matter what you do you will always find that Photoshop has a digital look. Even when you get close the texture still will have that digital look, I spent nearly 2 years trying to get what I wanted it to do. I strongly suggest saving yourself some time and getting Painter or the extremely inexpensive and in my opinion far better simulation software in ArtRage.

That said, if you are willing to settle for photoshop's digital looking limitations try a mix of adding texture to the stroke, using dual brush with a soft round brush as the second brush, turning on noise in the brush, and adjusting the opacity and flow settings to have some jitter in them. This coupled with pen pressure controls helped quite a bit, but still felt lacking and looking digital to me.

Good luck with your brushes.
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Old 05-04-2015, 05:08 PM
Davkin Davkin is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

ArtRage or Corel Painter are definitely better alternatives. A free trial is available for ArtRage so you can try it and figure out if it will do what you want, it's not expensive to purchase either, just under $50. The key to getting the look you want in ArtRage is adjusting the settings for the oil brush tool, in particular the loading, pressure and amount of "thinner".
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Old 05-04-2015, 05:14 PM
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Thanks! I will give ArtRage a test drive. I just took a quick peek at their site and it looks like it might be what I want.
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Old 05-09-2015, 08:34 AM
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

I triple that. While I've seen some wonderful pieces done in photoshop that emulate oils, if you want the paint to feel like oils as you are applying it, you want a different category of software, and Artrage is my first choice!
Good luck, and please post your work in the Digital Showcase. We'd love to hear about your journey into the digital realm and offer encouragement along the way.

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Old 05-18-2015, 02:13 PM
bob63 bob63 is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

I work in Photoshop and I'm a perfectionist! Trying to get away from that and getting more into a traditional art look. People keep thinking I use the smudge or clone technique to do my work, but I paint in Photoshop as I would traditionally, and I'd like my work to reflect that.

Haven't been able to alter the PS brushes enough to create a decent natural media brush. Might give ArtRage a look.

Bob
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Old 05-21-2015, 01:20 PM
Skullclutter Skullclutter is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Photoshop doesn't have paper texture or very good blending support, so if you stick with Photoshop, you might be frustrated until you get used to the new workflow.

There's a thread at ConceptArt.org that covers one painting technique pretty well, and I think the results would be in line with what you're after. You don't need to register an account to read the thread.

http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...inting-In-PS-2

Edit: I should mention, sticking with hard-edged brushes and playing around with the opacity and flow sliders should help avoid that "smudge brush" look.

Last edited by Skullclutter : 05-21-2015 at 01:22 PM.
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Old 05-21-2015, 03:25 PM
bob63 bob63 is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Yeah, right now I use on screen blending: no blender brushes. I have a few, but never liked the results and they are resource hogs.

I'll check out the link. Thanks.

Bob
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Old 05-31-2015, 07:32 AM
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

There is a great tutorial by Luke Hurwitz on this, it is really as close as it gets to real oils I assume. Plus it's only 6$, very affordable.

https://gumroad.com/l/khpF
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Old 11-02-2016, 03:40 PM
marcdanslouest marcdanslouest is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Hi Crista,

I don't know if anyone is still following this thread, but I'll pitch in.

Most people I talk to who have tried digital painting are disappointed with their results. I think it's because they expect to be able to take their current skills and workflows and apply them directly to the digital world, and obtain the *same* results as they get in their current medium of choice.

Sadly, that's not quite true, regardless of the software program you use. For sure, the digital medium can "mimic" other natural mediums (oil/acrylic, watercolor, pastels), but it has its own workflow and skillset!

My first attempts at painting were done in the digital world, so I had no pre-conceived ideas on how I wanted my brushes or canvas to behave or look. What I did is study a lot of paintings from artists I admire, and then set off to obtain similar results in the digital world, because that's what I wanted to do. I studied their brushstrokes, the way the paint interacts on the canvas, how the canvas texture shows through in some areas but not others, etc.

My first attempts at digital painting were with ArtRage. I picked it because it requires very little setup, and you can start painting almost immediately, with pretty good results.

But, I'm a perfectionist, and after a while I found that my results always looked "digital" with ArtRage. I often ended up going into Photoshop to add my own textures and effects to get the more "natural media" feel. As I read through posts on various forums, I also see that many artists go back and forth between ArtRage and Photoshop for ultimate flexibility.

Photoshop is a daunting piece of software to learn, I admit it. I don't think anyone really knows everything about Photoshop, it's just to broad and vast, and typically there's more than one way to obtain a desired effect. The tipping point for me (what made me switch to the Photoshop brush engine) is a video workshop by Jack Davis (former Adobe employee), on how to paint digitally with Photoshop. I think the workshop is still available at CreativeLive (I'm not associated). I watched the workshop, started using the tools and techniques, and never looked back.

I also got John Derry's Artist Brushes for Photoshop, along with his tutorials, which are more "to the point". Jack Davis likes to hear himself talk sometimes... :-)

But the point is this: Today, I've accumulated over 3 years of experimenting and applying my skills at digital painting. I have built my own set of digital brushes, derived from the ones I purchased above. And I'm always learning! Just last night I finally figured out how to get a Sargent brush to also behave like one of Photoshop's mixer brushes.

Learning to paint digitally is like any other medium: You have to put in the time. And of course it has to be enjoyable to you, otherwise why do it?

Another thing is printing... Painting digitally is convenient (I've done it in an airport once), but how do you display your art? Or even sell it? I typically print my works on canvas. I've tried local professional printers (very expensive but very beautiful), then tried online print services (less expensive but sometimes with flaws in the prints, especially large ones), and now I'm connected with a friend of a friend who is printing my works on Neschen Pure White Monet Canvas for 1/2 the price of the online service. I stretch the canvas myself on stretcher bars from the local art supply store, and then hand-embellish them with acrylic gel and paint because printing never gives you that third dimension that paint has, and the printed colors aren't always as bold.

This has become a very long post, so here's a summary of the tools and resources I use:

Workshops and tutorials:
- Jack Davis on CreativeLive.
- John Derry on lynda.com

Brushes:
- Some by Jack Davis (I modified most of them for my own use).
- Some by John Derry (Also modified for my own use).
- Kyle brushes (Kylebrush.com). These are absolutely awesome, I got the full pack and even the watercolor and pastels.
- Some stuff from Alex Dukal (canvas patterns, cool brushes and Impasto stuff).

Finally, two big mistakes that people make when painting with Photoshop, that create "lag" in the brushes:
1) They leave the "Sample All Layers" feature checked when using mixer brushes, which is deadly when you've got several layers going. The video workshops above show you how to get around that.

2) They paint Impasto style with the layer effects turned on. While other software like ArtRage and Corel can show Impasto as you paint, Photoshop struggles with this because it is essentially a pixel based program, and has to render millions and millions of pixels with each brush stroke. I now typically add my Impasto effects once my painting is almost complete! People would say "but that's not how real impasto painting is done!!!" and they're right, but this is digital painting, and as I said before, you work out your own workflows and techniques to make things work, as you would in other mediums when you have a problem.

You can search for my posts and see some of the digital work I've done with the Photoshop brush engine. I recall that some of the comments said that it completely fooled them, they had no idea it was painted digitally. But then, I don't really care that much anyways what people say about my paintings, I just do it because I enjoy it... that's why we're all here, right?

Cheers,
Marc
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Old 11-08-2016, 10:09 PM
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HwyStar HwyStar is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Thanks for pitching in on this post Marc!

You have given me some things to think about. I have been using ArtRage and am kind of stuck. It paints well, but it does not paint like real mediums do. Brushes in the real painting environment do things that digital just can't do. And fiddling around with the digital realm can get old really fast.

I have PS too but wanted to keep it simple by using AR. I may have to go back to doing my work in PS. The images I see painted in PS by professionals make AR look so-so.

Thanks for sharing the links to the tutorials and brushes that you have used and modified. Your landscapes look great! Keep up the great work and thanks again for your lengthy recap of digital painting!
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Old 11-12-2016, 01:07 AM
marcdanslouest marcdanslouest is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Hi Robert,

Yeah, as you said, brushes in the physical world do things that digital brushes don't do. But then you could also say that you can do things in watercolor that you can't do in oil or acrylic. And pastels are yet another beast to master. And in my opinion, so is the digital media. It's what you make of it, ultimately! The more you experiment with a medium, the better you get at it - but as long as you're enjoying the experiment! If not, then time to move to a different medium, or take some time off, I say.

Cheers!
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Old 11-12-2016, 03:53 PM
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Hey Marc!

I gave a quick go at a painting in ArtRage using some resources that the AR forum lead me too. It turned out all right for a first digital pastel:



ArtRage is 1000% easier to use, but someday I would like to use PS too.

Thanks again for helping me to think about pastels and to give them a try digitally. I had been hitting a road block using oils and other tools and was just not getting anywhere.

I did have a look at your work: Outstanding!
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Old 11-15-2016, 01:03 PM
marcdanslouest marcdanslouest is offline
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

Robert, thanks for your feedback!

Yeah, keep experimenting, and if you like the digital media, it's like anything else, you'll keep getting better at it the more you paint with it.

I agree that ArtRage is easier to use, but PS is nice to get those extra texture details. Mind you, at that point it's not really painting anymore, more like image manipulation... Although I often add my Impasto texture by painting them on after my painting is almost complete - it's a completely different workflow than painting with natural media.

Cheers,
Marc
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Old 12-25-2016, 02:11 AM
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Re: Photoshop tips for "oil" painting?

FYI. The programmers of ArtRage were the designers of the original painting programs by MetaCreations called ArtDabbler, along with Painter and several other titles.
Corel has long since purchased and shelved ArtDabbler, but not Painter. Painter is not the easiest software to use.

Since you have Photoshop it also takes effort to design the brush strokes, so check this site:
https://www.brusheezy.com/brushes/15...stroke-brushes
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