Here is a an example of the key stages in making a painting simulation from a photo. The process and software changes depending on what type of treatment - oil, watercolour etc - I am after. But the key stages in colour clone painting are - find a photograph you want to paint, prepare it for painting, and paint it.
1. Below Left: the starting photo. Too dark for painting as captured but I find lilies almost irresistible.
2. Below Middle: Cropped the photo for balance and took a chunk out of the mid section to shorten the flower stems. Brightened and added clarity with various Photoshop and Topaz filters. Added some colour pop with Vibrance filter in Photoshop. Added a broad central spot light to lift the flowers. Sharpened in Photoshop.
3. Below Right: the final picture painted in Corel Painter and fine tuned in Photoshop. The painting was done with two Artist Oils brushes - one for blocking and large strokes, the other for detail work here and there. I deliberately wanted an impressionistic effect - partly because this works very well with flowers, and partly to deal with the right hand duck which is only partly in the photo. I wanted to focus on the light and colours, not the scene's detail. The first completed version (not shown) was too bright and I adjusted the tones in Photoshop to bring it back nearer to that of the photo. The treatment is sympathetic I think.