I recently photographed some calla lilies, and the colors and textures of the lilies begged for a treatment of the oil painting filter in Adobe Photoshop CS6. These lilies were photographed under a bank of fluorescent lights, and the colors were enhanced by post processing in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4.1RC2. The image was captured using my Nikon D300 with the 105mm f/2.8 MicroNikkor lens, ISO 400, 0.5 sec at f/16, -1/3 EV exposure compensation. The camera was mounted on a tripod for these exposures, and I used a remote trigger for the shutter, first locking the mirror up and then firing the shutter a few seconds later to minimize vibrations.
I first processed the image in Lightroom, enhancing the color and exposure and then taking the background to black by adjusting the Blacks slider. I chose to adjust the image to a slightly warmer color temperature than the fluorescent lighting would have rendered, and then I sent the image to be edited in the external editor (CS6). I invoked the Oil Painting filter and experimented with the settings to get an effect I liked, and this is the result. There are lots of resources for learning how to use the Oil Painting filter in CS6, and I’m having a great time exploring the features of the filter. It’s pretty neat that the filter is included in CS6 and does not require a plugin to accomplish the effect. Let me know what you think of it!