New Work: Hand – Painted (Digitally) Using a Photograph as a Reference

I have recently been working on creating hand – painted digital artworks using photographs (my own, and occasionally free public domain images I find online from sites such as as a reference. I used to be skeptical about this kind of painting as a being a true and authentic method of hand painting since, after all, I am doing it on a computer – digitally. Most people have a knee – jerk reaction when they first hear about this, thinking: Oh, it must be artificially created –  since a computer is involved in the process. But, while that may have been a valid reaction say, twenty years ago, technology keeps evolving over the years and today the reality is much different from what it was back then. There are now many traditional and very accomplished artists who started out learning their craft (using the traditional tools artists have been using for centuries: paint, brush, and canvas or paper) – but who have recently switched to using digital tools such as: a computer with a high -end painting program like Corel Painter, coupled with a stylus pen and tablet (most notable is the Wacom Tablet and Stylus) which when used together allows an artist to digitally hand – paint artworks that are just as artistic and “painterly” as their predecessors – the traditional paint, brush and canvas art.

I am ready to confidently state that this new form of art is not only real and authentic art, but that it is here to stay and will continue to evolve, grow and become more and more accepted by the mainstream “aficionados” as time goes on.

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“Girl With Seagulls” I hand – painted this using Corel Painter 2015 coupled with my Wacom stylus pen and tablet.

The photograph I used as a reference is a free pubic domain image that is donated by the photographer giving anyone full

access and permission to use it for any purpose (including commercial) and without any attribution needed. (I would add here that I typically like to include attribution – that is identifying by name the photographer of the image I used, but in this case the photographer chose to remain anonymous).

MValley_painting_015sighp copy

“Monument Valley” This is another painting referenced from a public domain image (donated by photographer David Mark) I created recently. I am employing some newly learned techniques which I acquired from a digital painting workshop hosted by traditional turned digital artist Melissa Gallo. Another well known traditional artist who is now working almost exclusively with digital tools is Jeremy Sutton. Both of these artists are far more advanced in their craft than I and devote a good deal of their time and energy teaching people like me how to become better creators of “real” and “authentic” digital art.

So, what else can I say? I’m hooked. I am a skeptic no more – I am diving in to this new medium with wild abandon and breathless anticipation of what’s next to show up on the horizon in the form of new software, hardware, techniques ect.



P.S. I have these and other works available for sale as Limited Edition (1/50) Fine Art Giclee Prints from my Etsy Shop. Click this link to go there now:

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