After a couple of very basic courses in Photoshop and a tutorial by my best friend Carmen I was able to come up with a crude method to manipulate RGB color into something resembling my original paintings:
I. Taking Pictures of Artwork
I don't use artificial light because I'm lazy, so I wait until the morning or afternoon of a sunny day and rely on the light reflected from a sunny area to take photos with a good digital camera (they distort less than the pocket-sized ones).
I makes sure to keep the artwork perfectly level. This will facilitate cropping later.
I create three files for each painting
a. A 300 dpi, cropped "original" from which photos for paper and high-quality reproduction will be created.
b. A 72 dpi, with adjusted color, large file (4-5" across), for the web.
c. A 72 dpi, with adjusted color, small file (.75 inch across), for the web.
I open the original picture I took and crop it. It is a 300 dpi file. I save this as blakegarden_or, and it will be the file I will later manipulate to meet the requirements of paper media and gliceé printing.
Then I click on "View/Actual Size" to see the actual dimensions of the photo. I go to "Image/size" to adjust the size to something that can be seen on a computer screen in its entirety. Then, I click on "Image/Adjustments/Contrast-Brightness" and play with those controls until I see something that better resembles my painting. Then I go to "File/Save for the web" and hit "Save." I always save my work in a USB for safety. The "Save for the web" button will change the image from 300 dpi to 72 dpi. It will look smaller. I use this image to publish on the web.
To make an even smaller picture of my painting, I return to "Image/size" and play with the dimensions, then I go to "File/Save for the web" once more. I save it with a suffix to differentiate it from the others: blakegarden_sm, and use it as an icon on which people can click to access a larger image.