A few weeks ago, as I started our master bedroom facelift, I started looking at options for art over Mike’s library table. I knew I wanted a natural landscape… Mike loves the outdoors, the coast and waterfowl. I also knew that I wanted the art to be watercolor. I felt like the softer effects of watercolor would work really well with other planned elements in the room. As much as I would have loved to purchase an original watercolor for the space, it just wasn’t in the budget.
Mike’s dad is an incredibly talented photographer who focuses on nature and the birds and “critters” of Eastern North and South Carolina. (His website is here… if you’re intrigued by the wildlife around us in North Carolina, you should check it out!). We have several framed photos of his work and I actually thought about looking into the possibility of having him send me some photos and using a photo editing tool to make the photos look like watercolor. But, in the end, that just felt wrong. He’s already an artist that has created a gorgeous photograph. It’s one thing to take my own picture and edit it. Another thing to take a photograph and have it painted by an artist (with permission from the photographer). It didn’t feel right to take his photo (even with his permission) and let a computer app change it. So, I moved on to Plan B, found something I loved and ended up with beautiful art for above Mike’s library table (back to that in a bit). Ironically, about a week after those pictures had been hung, I discovered Waterlogue. A little too late, but that became a blessing in the long run.
Home Sweet Home… in Waterlogue
Waterlogue is fun… if you follow me on Instagram, you know that I’m more than a little obsessed. Basically, Waterlogue is an iphone app that takes any photo you upload or take on your iphone and instantly turns it into a watercolor painting. It’s not a free app, but you can print your “paintings”, so if you use it to create inexpensive art, it’s definitely worth it’s $2.99 purchase price.
Some of my favorite pictures turned “watercolors” via Waterlogue:
The end of Folly Beach, SC
My Bedside Vanity
I’ve loved playing with the Waterlogue app with my own pictures. I’ve realized that while it does a good job of creating watercolor pictures, but the results aren’t always what you want them to be. Pictures that I think might make a beautiful watercolor sometimes end up too soft, too blurry. But I’ve had a lot of success with the app too… I’ve loved the pictures of my homes, Gracie and Emma, and still life shots from around the house.
But in the end, I’ve realized that technology can’t substitute for the work of an actual artist. An artist captures the details in a watercolor painting that no app can possibly replicate. And with that, we’re back to the search for a watercolor for above Mike’s library table. When I decided not to use photo editing software to create the look I wanted, I turned to one of my favorite sites for art… Etsy. I was able to search for waterfowl and coastal watercolors and found an artist whose works were exactly what I was looking for (Here is the link to one of the prints I chose). I chose coastal scenes that look like they could have been painted right here in the Carolinas…. soft muted colors… exquisite details. An original watercolor print on heavy paper in an 8×10 finished size was perfect for what I was looking for…. and at $20, it fit right into my budget. It was a win-win. I found art for above Mike’s table that I loved at a price that didn’t break the bank. While it’s a print, it’s from an Etsy shop. That means it hasn’t been mass produced, and it feels unique and original to me.
That’s not to say that I don’t have plans to try printing a few of my Waterlogue creations and framing them here and there around the house. I think Waterlogue is an amazing, fun (and addictive) app and love the results of some of the photos I’ve played with there. But for our master bedroom, I’m so glad I ended up choosing “real” art.
So, I’m curious… if you’ve downloaded the Waterlogue App, what are your thoughts on it? And if you’ve used Etsy to purchase art in the past, who are some of your favorite artists?