I was beginning to think that other artists used some kind of wizardry to get good images of their watercolor paintings.
It took a lot of research to find out which (reasonably priced) scanner would be best for watercolor paintings. Generally, the Epson Perfection series received good reviews from artists, so with some trepidation, I ordered the Epson Perfection v600.
And now for a comparison test. I hope this is helpful to anyone out there suffering from bad scanner syndrome.
Epson Perfection v600
- Colors are very close to original; minor Photoshop adjustments can create a match
- Flat scanning causes very little gutter shadow
- Consistent scan quality makes it easy to stitch together large paintings
HP Photosmart (and other various scanners I tested)
- Lighter colors are washed out so scans are basically unusable, even with Photoshop adjustments
- Grainy quality
- Just plain aggravating
- Image is slightly warped due to lens curvature; this causes the edges to look ‘bent’ so you have to crop out some of the picture.
- Hard to get good lighting
- Colors need a lot of adjustment to look like the original; however, they are better than the HP scanner.
If you're looking for a good scanner, I recommend the Epson Perfection. I'm so happy with it that I will probably be up till 2 am re-scanning all of my work. Hooray...
Update - if you're wondering what to do after you've scanned in your artwork to make it look more like the original, I just finished a tutorial. Click here to check it out!