How do I Turn Photos into Paintings Using Photoshop CS3?

Written by bridget conn
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How do I Turn Photos into Paintings Using Photoshop CS3?
Give your photos the look of a painting in Photoshop CS3. ( Images)

Due to the filters available in Photoshop CS3, it only takes a few clicks of the mouse to turn a photo into a painting. Multiple types of painting effects have their own variables, such as brush detail and texture. You can also combine multiple filters to create unique painting styles of your own.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Open the photo by clicking "File," "Open" and selecting it from its folder.

  2. 2

    Create a layer identical to the image by right-clicking the layer in the Layers pane and choosing "Duplicate Layer." Click "OK" in the resulting dialogue box, and the new layer appears. This preserves your base image so you can undo changes.

  3. 3

    Click "Filter," "Filter Gallery" and open the Artistic folder.

  4. 4

    Choose "Dry Brush" for the look of using a dry paintbrush. Adjust the sliding "Brush Size," "Brush Detail" and "Texture" scales.

  5. 5

    Click "Fresco" for a bolder and thicker painting style. Adjust for brush size, brush detail and texture.

  6. 6

    Select "Paint Daubs" for a smudged painting style with fewer contour lines. Use the "Brush Size" and "Sharpness" sliding scales for detail adjustments. Use the "Brush Type" drop-down menu to choose from "Simple," "Light Rough," "Dark Rough," "Wide Sharp," "Wide Blurry" and "Sparkle" options. These options change the amount of lines and the values of the image.

  7. 7

    Choose the Palette Knife filter to give a similar effect to Paint Daubs but with more "patches" of paint. Adjust the "Stroke Size," "Stroke Detail" and "Softness" sliding scales for different effects.

  8. 8

    Click "Underpainting" to create a textured and blurry painting from your photo. Sliding scale options include "Brush Size," "Texture Coverage," "Scaling" and "Relief." Texture types are available from a drop-down menu and include brick, burlap, canvas and sandstone. You can also choose a direction from which you want light to shine to enhance the textured 3-D effect.

  9. 9

    Select "Watercolor" for this style of painting. Use the "Brush Detail," "Shadow Intensity" and "Texture" sliding scales to your preference.

  10. 10

    Click "OK" when you have selected one of these filters to apply to your photo. You can revisit the Filters Gallery and apply multiple filters to the image if desired.

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