I’m retired and I have been using Photoshop CS2. I would like to learn more about Photoshop but I don’t know what to do next. I’m on a limited fixed income so I need to be careful of what I buy. I’m interested in two areas, one; changing black and white pictures to color, and two; changing color pictures to look like paintings. What would you suggest I do next and how? In advance, thank you for your help.
Attend an arts course at your local college? These aren't really technical questions, but rather generic and related to how create certain artistic styles. Beyond learning how to create better selections perhaps there is really not much involved in colorizing pictures. It's just an exercise in patience to painstakingly paint over using blending modes and all that...
What mylenium said.
You cannot learn Photoshop from scratch in a forum, question by question.
As I've typed countless times over the years, Photoshop is a professional level application that makes no apologies for its long and steep learning curve.
Your needs far exceed the scope of this forum.
To start learning, take a class in your nearest community college or similar educational institute, watch the Adobe video tutorials on this site, take a subscription to lynda.com, etc. There are many learning tools out there, just Google "learning Photoshop".
Good luck (and please remember this is a user site. I do not work for Adobe).