New app turns holiday photos into art

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Copy of si WATERCOLORS2 SLATE With Waterlogue, you can transform a photo of bicycles into a watercolour. Picture: Waterlogue

New York - Too busy to pick up a paintbrush? Waterlogue, a photo app for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, uses your snapshots as rough drafts for watercolour-inspired works of digital art.

Waterlogue turns photos into sketches that are filled in while you watch, giving you the option to adjust colour and brush stroke size, choose a filter, tweak brightness, and decide whether you want a border.

Waterlogue is the latest photo app from John Balestrieri and Robert Clair, who are responsible for Percolator, which turns photos into multicoloured mosaics, and Popsicolor, which transforms snapshots into virtual ink illustrations.

“We wanted non-artists to be able to see the world as an artist might,” Balestrieri said, “to give people access to a creative tool that doesn’t require any training.”

The ability to add a watercolour filter to photos is nothing new, but Waterlogue has created an app that fans say replicates more closely the hand of the artist than a Photoshop filter.

Balestrieri said that Waterlogue hoped to digitally capture the charm of the tin kits of watercolour pigments that artists carry around to make watercolour sketches in their notebooks.

“There are apps out there that apply a watercolour-type filter to images, but they don’t really approach anything made by a person, which details what to leave in, which to take out – all of the little decisions that make a painting communicate the essence and spirit of a scene, instead of a straight depiction of reality.” – Slate

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