Fine art photographer, Melanie Myhre is well-known for creating ethereal images. She’s been featured on our blog before. If you missed out on the article, check it out here. In the article below, Melanie share’s her opinions about Snap Art 4 and offers some technical tips for creating painterly images with a classical feel.
The rest of this article comes from her. Thanks, Melanie!
I grew up in a highly artistic family. My mother is a painter, so naturally I learned to paint long before I picked up a camera. I started with crayons and wax pencils, then moved through other mediums such as pen and ink and acrylics. I spent long hours studying art history books, drooling over the works of the masters, hoping I could produce a fraction of what the greats created effortlessly.
In 9th grade, I discovered photography and everything changed. I’m still passionately inspired by the great painters throughout history. The Romanticist and Art Nouveau painters of the 18th and 19th centuries are particularly dear to my heart. John William Waterhouse celebrated feminine beauty with an ethereal, sacred grace. He portrayed women as goddesses, exemplifying attributes of the ‘English Rose’ such as soft feminine features and classical beauty. On the other hand, Alphonse Mucha celebrated the glitz and glamor of his era while still maintaining a goddess-like grace in the women he portrayed. Both artists emotionally evocative works used flowing hair, soft poses, and billowing fabric as prominent elements within the scene.
I use much of the same approach in my photography work, even though it’s a different medium. I carefully arrange scenes in the natural outdoors–sometimes I’ll make my own props and wardrobe–and combined with creative posing, I can bring the shot together in camera. In my opinion, Photoshop composites just don’t have the same feel as the real thing.
I’ve experimented with various textures, color filters, packaged actions, and Photoshop techniques to give my shots a painterly look, but nothing satisfied the aesthetic I was after–until Snap Art 4. The realism of the effects rendered by this software is exactly what I’m after. They’re realistic enough to make people ask if it is a photo or a painting.