Turning Spanish Landscape Photos into Fine Art

Painting a landscape is a very soothing activity, there is no doubt about that. Sitting under the sun, looking out into the vast nature, especially in a place as breathtaking as Spain, and painting what you see before your eyes in your own unique way is one of the most relaxing activities for many landscape painters.  

But not everyone is a painter. There are many people who, despite loving the effect of a painting, cannot paint and get frustrated at this fact. But there are other ways of creating painting-like images too. These obviously cannot compete with the real thing, but fine art photography can be a great way to do justice to Spain’s beauty. 

  • What Makes a Fine Art Photo 

A fine art photo is simply any photo you consider to be art. I know that is a very broad statement, so here is my definition: a fine art photo either has to have a unique theme, a unique subject, a unique style, or a unique concept, and then it needs to have the photographer’s creative intent shining through clearly. You cannot just take a normal photo, put a filter on it and call it a fine art photo. The image has to say something to be a piece of art. 

For the creative aspect of a fine art photo, you will probably need to use any of the best photo editor for Mac or Windows, whichever you prefer, and then creatively decide which aspects of the image you would like to edit.  

  • The Creative Effects to Use 

So, what exactly can you do to turn a landscape into a piece of art? Well first, you need to make sure your framing is spot on. Find out the best time of day to photograph your scene. Make sure the light is right and the place is not crowded. Set up your camera settings properly to reflect the kind of look you wish to achieve. Take the photo in RAW so that you can later experiment with editing without destroying the underlying image.  

Once you have your image, open it up in the photo editor of your choice and then try the following effects: 

  • Black and White: A photo without color instantly gets a more artsy feel to it. The viewer’s eyes are drawn to the subject itself rather than getting confused as to where they should go in the frame.  
  • Soft Details: You can give your photo a more painterly effect by making it soft. Softer details instantly make images look like they weren’t taken with a camera but rather created some other way.  
  • Film Simulations: If you want your images to have a more vintage feel, you can apply an advanced film simulation in conjunction with softening the details. This will make your images stand out more.  
  • Change the Sky: Changing the skies in photos is one of the most famous ways of making them look more creative. You may have the perfect location to shoot and the best light to shoot in, but the sky might be plain and bland or too full and intimidating. That is when you go into something like Photoshop and change the sky with another photo you may have. This can also be used very creatively, as you can change the colors of the new sky and give your photo a totally different mood.  
  • HDR: An HDR photo doesn’t always have to be too natural-looking. You can use an HDR editor to really push images to their limits and completely change how a scene looks. You can make the edges pop out too much, or not enough. You can make the light look natural, or completely unnatural. You can make the colors look dull, or way too saturated. Whatever you decide to do, an HDR photo can be turned into a piece of art in various ways.  

So, if you’re a photographer who would love to play creatively with Spanish landscapes, here are some ways you can give that a try. One of the best things about digital photo editing is that you can experiment with your photos a lot before finalizing what they look like, so grab a RAW editor today if you don’t have one and get creative with your photos.  

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Some Tips for Landscape Painting

Spain, as we have already established, is a beautiful place for an artist to be in. There is so much inspiration all around you that it may be hard not to make great art. Spanish landscapes make great subjects as well. Blue skies, sunny weather, white beaches, and much more is present to be a subject of your art.

If you happen to visit Spain and would like to paint some amazing landscapes, here are some tips to help you out:

  • Do the Research

Before arriving in Spain, do some research online about the places you’d like to paint. Because once you are there, you probably won’t have enough time to walk around looking for inspiration. You could, of course, do that if that is the kind of style you work in but it’s still good to have done a little bit of knowledge about the places you’re going to visit.

  • Mind the Time

If you like to sit down on location and paint the scene in front of your very eyes, like many painters do, then you need to be very careful of the way light changes through the day. You don’t want the light to completely change while you are painting a scene if you want the painting to be realistic.

  • Take Some Photos

If you don’t have much time to sit down and paint all day but would still like to make some art based on your vacation, you need to take photos. This doesn’t mean that you can get by with photos taken from an old phone. You have to put some time and effort into the photography so that the results you get are as close to realistic as possible. Take photos in HDR, use a software like Aurora HDR (www.aurorahdr.com) to carefully edit your photographs and make them look the way you need in order to be able to paint them when you’re back home.



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Great Subjects to Paint in Spain

In a place like Spain, I can’t imagine an artist ever being short of inspiration. There is so much to see practically everywhere that a painter can find something new to paint every day. From the architecture to the street life, Spain has something unique to offer and painters can find a variety of subjects to paint.

So if you’re an artist in Spain, or would just like to visit this beautiful country and capture the beauty and culture of it through paint, the following subjects might be enough to spark your creativity.

  • The Breathtaking Nature

Some of the most stunning natural wonders can be found in Spain. Whether you want to make an impressionist art piece of a wild beach or capture the beauty of mountains covered with snow in a realistic style, you’re sure to find your subject of choice in this country. The white sand beaches of Andalusia are some of the most beautiful you’ll see anywhere in the world.

  • The Unique Architecture

Have you ever heard of Antoni Gaudi? This era-defying architect created some of his best architectural wonders in Spain. Barcelona is littered with Gaudi’s amazing sculptural buildings that any painter of architecture will appreciate. The buildings themselves are so surreal that painting them without any extra effort can result in beautiful pieces of art.

  • The Street Life

The highly dynamic street life of Spain gives artists the opportunity to capture some very interesting scenes from the daily life. The streets are flooded with people, food is everywhere, and the markets are colorful. If you’re someone who enjoys painting dynamic scenes with a lot of movement and color, then head to the streets and inspiration will find you itself.


Spain is a country ripe with inspiration for artists. Having produced so many world-renowned artists, it’s no wonder that Spain attracts people from all over every year looking for creative inspiration and opportunity.

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