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This has almost been a hidden project (although I have blogged and posted on Instagram many times about it). The underlying idea is to be able to add authentic looking marks, as if they are made by my hand into, rather than onto photos. I am finding this merging the originality of a sketch or painting within the photo gives massive creative opportunities.

I have investigated a few approach but the two I like most are –

  1. Cloning, this is a feature offered by a few software graphics packages where a photo can me samples for colour, tone or cut/paste larger sections. In the better system like Corel painter, the brush tool becomes the cloning device and you can literally brush in (or out) parts of a photographic image, which can be mixed on the digital canvas with other graphic element.

The clone painting/photo “self-portrait” here gives an idea of the wide variety of brush strokes and media that can be employed.
2.  Using Artificial Intelligence, by first  training an AI network, using my own sketches and then playing back the early layers of that network (which hopefully capture the style of my mark making and/or colour/tonal nuisances) whilst looking for (and enhancing) similary graphic aspects in a photo. Again there are several software programs and even phone app that now offer aspects  of  these capabilities. I have been concentrating on using Google Deep Dream Generator as my main AI tool
me sketching on HP tablet
Crude "plein air" sketch using bamboo paper
This is a very crude “plein air”  sketch I made directly onto my little HP Spectre using Bamboo paper. It was presented as the style image in Googles Deep Dream generator.
Sunny Day at Table Rock, Beaumaris
I then made a stitched panoramic of the scene. Note it doesn’t have to match the sketch.
Final "Deep Dream"
Finally the generated “Deep Dream” (A photo Inspired image with my mark making baked into it)

The self-portrait on my home page is an another example of such AIart.

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