Learn Basic Photo Editing

Our Favorite Artsy Effects To Go From Photo To Painting

By Rach DePaoli | Basic Photo Editing Effects Showcase Photo Editor Tutorials

For centuries, painting has been a way for people to tell stories, capture moments in time, and express themselves. We can see the exceptional talent of painters and artists from their pieces that are still revelled over and prized today. But what are we to do if we have the passion to create unique paintings without the talent to support us? What you need is a lifehack, aka BeFunky’s vast collection of Artsy effects that will take you from photo to painting in one click!

painting supplies

Rather than spending countless hours learning how to paint, all you need is your favorite photos and a BeFunky Plus account. It’ll give you access to all of BeFunky’s Artsy effects in one little upgrade, allowing you to turn your photos into whatever style of painting strikes your fancy. From watercolor to oil paintings, gouache, pointillism, impressionist, and underpainting, you’ll find an Artsy effect for any look you want to achieve - no actual art skills required.

Photo to Painting Inspiration

There are many different painterly options to choose from with BeFunky’s Artsy effects. Whether you want to create paintings for home decor or share them on social media to impress your friends, here’s a sneak peek of the different styles you can create:

Oil Painting

Oil painters utilize pigments and oil to create their medium. The oil allows the paint to dry slower, thus making it so that the painter can adjust their canvas in the process. Oil painting creates a smooth effect and gives the painting a stronger pigment than acrylic mediums, but they can take weeks to dry.

photo to oil painting
landscape photography



Instead, you can get the look with zero drying time! Just choose the Oil Painting category from the Artsy effects collection. You’ll see your photo transform into a brilliant oil painting right on your screen.


Watercolor painting is the spirit child of painting mediums. Whereas you can easily adjust and manipulate other mediums, with watercolor, where you place your brushstrokes matter. By mixing pigments with various amounts of water, you are able to utilize transparency and glow.

photo to watercolor painting
landscape photo



Even if you’ve never picked up a paintbrush in your life, you can still get the look of watercolor with BeFunky’s Artsy effects. The Watercolor category mimics the same brushstrokes and pigment variation, giving you a watercolor painting that looks like you’ve got a totally believable hidden talent.


Gouache paintings look like a mix between watercolor and acrylic paints and are commonly used in graphic novels and cartoon illustrations. Often referred to as opaque watercolors, this velvety texture absorbs light so the colors look intensely rich, pigmented, and smooth.

photo to painting online



The Gouache category in the Artsy effects tab can give you the same vibrance and opacity as the real life medium, only you won’t be spending money on art supplies. It’s perfect for transforming colorful photos into a painterly masterpiece.


Popularized by the great Claude Monet, impressionism techniques include short, thick strokes in order to create the essence of a scene rather than highlighting the details. If you step back from an impressionist painting, you’ll be able to see the scene as a whole, but stepping closer, you’ll be able to see all of the tiny, thoughtful strokes of color that go into the painting.

photo to impressionist painting
colorful landscape photography



BeFunky’s Impressionist effects mimic the same look as a Monet painting, transforming your photo into hundreds of tiny strokes of color to create the scene. The best part is, you can adjust the size and length of the brushstrokes, giving you a totally customizable look.


Similar to impressionism, pointillism paintings are created by clustering small colored points together in varied patterns. These points become blended when you stand away from the painting, and it’s only when you’re up close to the painting can you notice that it is comprised of tiny dots.

photo to pointillism painting



Rather than spending your time blending all the right colors and dotting a canvas, BeFunky’s Pointillism effects can help you get the look in a single click! They’ll create the perfect color palette from the pixels of your photo and transform them into all the tiny dots you’d need to create a masterpiece.


Underpainting is a technique that’s been used for centuries. It usually involves a base layer of paint used to bring vibrance, contrast, and added tonal values, then a finishing coat is applied to add texture. Based on this real life technique, BeFunky’s Underpainting effects bring out the richness and texture of your photo that can’t be captured with a camera.

photo to underpainting
new york brooklyn bridge



Now that you’ve got some painterly inspiration, we’ll show you how easy it is to apply our Artsy effects and go from photo to painting in seconds!

How To Turn Photos To Paintings With BeFunky

When you’re ready to turn your favorite photo into a painting, upload it into BeFunky’s Photo Editor using the Open tab at the top of the screen or simply drag-and-drop it into the interface. When it’s ready to go on your canvas, click the Artsy effects tab in the menu on the left.

Photo to Art effects by BeFunky

In the Artsy effects tab, you’ll find a variety of categories that feature painterly effects. Spend some time browsing through the categories, and feel free to preview each effect on your photo by clicking the thumbnails.

how to turn photos to art online

You’ll find an intensity slider on each of the Artsy effects thumbnails. You can use it to control the amount of the effect you’d like to add to your photo. From here, you can either click the checkmark to apply the effect, or get even more detailed by clicking the Settings menu (the mixing board icon).

turn photo to painting in BeFunky

Each Artsy effect has its own set of adjustments you can make in the Settings menu. For this Watercolor effect, we can control the Paint Amount, Sharpness, and Smoothness. Adjust each of the sliders little by little until it takes on the look that you want.

how to turn photo to watercolor painting

Once your photo is looking like the painterly masterpiece you envisioned, click the Save button at the top of the Photo Editor to save your work. Now that you’re a pro at creating digital art, you’re going to want to keep on creating more pieces for your collection!

Before and After

Just look at this beautiful watercolor painting created with BeFunky’s Artsy effects! It looks like something we spent hours on:

photo to watercolor painting
landscape photo



These Artsy effects can be really handy for creating art pieces for your home or office decor. Rather than spending an exorbitant amount of time or money on art pieces, you can easily create them with BeFunky in a few clicks! With all of the different photo to painting effects available, you can unleash your inner artist and create masterpieces in any style. Click the link below to start creating!

Go From Photo To Art In One Click.

Photo Editing. Simplified