The attached image shows three "before" and "after" photos of last Sunday's venture to Rock City Gardens. (Clicking on it should make it larger.)
My original intent (many years ago) was to use Illustrator and/or Photoshop as a starting point for planning watercolor paintings. I love watercolor, but tended to play so much with the design elements that I lost the overall composition. With watercolor, you can't really recover - there's no getting back those beautiful light colors if you paint them away!
But then, using Illustrator and Photoshop kind of took over, for several reasons. One is that I still can't paint as well as what I create in both of these tools. Another is that I found painting from something I already created boring. But probably the main reason is that digital art is so incredibly powerful and fast! I can often build what's in my head in either tool in about an hour where I used to spend twenty or thirty hours on a watercolor and still not get the look I wanted.
I still want to paint. I like putting watercolors on paper and also because my digital art at this point exists mainly in my laptop. Getting it to look in print like it looks on screen is still a major issue for me. But I'd love to hear from others how they feel about digital art versus painting. And how they feel about photo manipulation in general. I'm not a skilled photographer, so maybe that's why I don't have any qualms about changing a photo into what looks more like a watercolor. Any opinions?