Load your Source Image (you can see it in the Objects list) and then apply Random Painter filter to it. Our image comes from Fotolia’s stock collection, and is used at a size of 1000 by 667 pixels.
In order to obtain a watercolor effect, we will need to work carefully with different Brushes. So, in the Properties + Preview pane, click the Browse button next to the Brush family. The Brush Selector window appears. Note that by default, a simple Paint Brush is used in the Random Painter Style. Here we will be using new Brushes that have not been integrated into the program itself. So, go to the PostworkShop website and download the Tempera Comet 01 and Water Shades 01 brushes from the Brushes Download Page. To access and install them, click the Browse brush family button and click the Import button on the lower left corner. Select the Brush to install and click Open.
A message confirms the correct and completed installation of this Brush family.
Next, select the new Water Shade brush family and click OK to apply it.
Change the Brush sizes: go to the pane on the left-side and reset the minimum to about 150 pixels, and the maximum to approximately 450 pixels. The filtered image will be previewed in real time, at the scale shown in the information bar immediately below it.
Now drop a second, new Random Painter layer above the previous one and change the Brush family for this to the Tempera Comet brush family.
Change the Brush sizing again here: the minimum to about 150 pixels, and the maximum to approximately 450 pixels. Blend the two Random Painter Style layers together: in this case the Soft light blending mode was used with a 25% opacity setting.
Finally, drop a third, new Random Painter layer above the previous two and change its Brush family to the Watercolor 02 family. The Brush dimensions and other settings are shown on the left-hand side of the screenshot below.
Optionally Texture can be added to the Style Layers, in order to give the image a natural look. From the Simple Styles, add Texturizer after the last Random Painter filter.
A Sharpen filter can be added after the second Random Painter; this too adds to the natural effect, creating an appearance of more depth in the brushwork.
To recap: in this instance, the bottommost Random Painter Layer is in the Normal mode, at 100% Opacity, the second Layer is set to the Soft Light blending mode, with a 25% Opacity, and the topmost/third Layer is also in the Soft Light mode at a full 100% Opacity. (The Pin Light and Overlay blending modes are also candidates for experimentation for the second and third Layers.)
This is certainly a good start on the way to simulating a watercolor-look output. At this stage it would be good practice to save your work as a Project file, and to save the image output also. You can save the image itself by clicking the floppy disk icon at the top left corner of the screen, next selecting the folder where you want to the image to be located, and press Save. Remember also to check Full size image – as shown in the next screenshot – in order to produce and record a rendering at the original size. Otherwise, just the Preview output will be saved.
The result of our work for this tutorial is shown as the last image here. At this point it would be appropriate to save the three-Layer combination as a dedicated and specific Style by itself. You could also consider further refinements to the output by using the Alpha Map masking feature of PostworkShop and/or the Bitmap Editor. In both cases, the manual painting feature is initialized automatically. This subsidiary step can be utilized as a means of creating your own personal interpretation of the work (above and beyond what the auto-painting routines have created).