Paint It!

Photo painter Corel shows you how to quickly make works of art out of your pho­to­graphs

ImagineFX - - Reviews -

See­ing the brush strokes of your photo be­ing turned into art is a nice touch

Price £27 Com­pany Corel Web

Paint It! makes it pos­si­ble to turn regular pho­tos into hand-drawn works of dig­i­tal art. The soft­ware is aimed squarely at begin­ners – in­deed, its sim­ple in­ter­face with big, easy-to-un­der­stand icons means that it’s an ex­cel­lent tool for get­ting chil­dren into dig­i­tal art. How­ever, adults may also find lots to like here.

Like some of the best be­gin­ner tools, Paint It! can be as sim­ple as you like, but it also has enough depth to help you re­fine your art as you be­come more pro­fi­cient with the pro­gram. Us­ing it is as sim­ple as se­lect­ing a dig­i­tal photo, choos­ing an art style (such as Oil Paint­ing, Im­pres­sion­ist Paint­ing, Wa­ter­col­ors and much more) and press­ing the Play but­ton. Paint It! takes care of the rest. See­ing the brush strokes of your photo be­ing turned into dig­i­tal art is a nice touch, giv­ing you in­sight into colour and tech­nique.

The fi­nal re­sults are pretty de­cent, and for some peo­ple they’ll be good enough. How­ever, as an artist you’ll prob­a­bly want to dive in and add your own flair to the art­work, and Paint It! makes this pos­si­ble.

The de­fault tool se­lected is the Soft­edge Cloner brush, which is handy for bring­ing back de­tails from the orig­i­nal pho­to­graph. A light touch is needed here for best re­sults, but un­for­tu­nately the de­fault set­ting is rather over the top, lead­ing to some ghastly out­comes. You can eas­ily tweak Brush size and Opac­ity, giv­ing you slightly more con­trol over the brushes, but you’re only able to in­crease or de­crease the val­ues in in­cre­ments of five or 10.

Although Corel has some im­pres­sive tech­nol­ogy in its art soft­ware port­fo­lio, it feels as though not much of this know-how has been ap­plied to Paint It! There’s a per­cep­ti­ble lag when paint­ing that can be dis­tract­ing, and the more you paint, the big­ger the dis­con­nect be­tween your­self and the tools be­comes. The best dig­i­tal art pro­grams pro­vide you with in­stant re­sults that match your brush strokes and Paint It! isn’t ca­pa­ble of that.

As a tool for chil­dren and ab­so­lute begin­ners, or any­one who wants to quickly trans­form pho­tos into draw­ings, Paint It! is a per­fectly fine tool. How­ever, if you want com­plete con­trol over your dig­i­tal art, then this soft­ware prob­a­bly isn’t for you.

You can view the photo be­ing ‘painted’ in the style of your choice. Big but­tons make it pos­si­ble to quickly find the tool or brush that you want, although op­tions are limited.

A sim­ple in­ter­face en­ables you to quickly and eas­ily choose the photo you want to trans­form.

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