The Brush Tool in Photoshop is a versatile feature that lets you create interesting elements with just a couple of clicks. Photoshop brushes use strokes to draw lines and shapes in your project. They improve the images in PhotoShop and fix flaws.
They are preset to control the shape and flow of lines used to add special effects such as digital art creation, freehand design, or custom graphics or drawings.
Photoshop comes with several preset brushes for general styles. There are also brushes you can download to add to your creative toolbox. This article will show you how to install and use brushes in Photoshop.
Where are the classic brush sets?
If you’re using the latest version of Photoshop and can’t find brush sets and other classic brush sets, you are not alone. Many guides show you how to access them from a previous version. Here’s how to find where they are hiding.
- Start by selecting the Brush tool from the left navigation bar.
- Right-click anywhere on the canvas to open the Brush Preset Selector.
- Click the gear icon in the upper right corner. Select Legacy Brushes at the bottom of the menu and click OK to restore them.
- Photoshop will return the legacy brush set to your list of brush sets.
How to install brushes in Photoshop from Photoshop
Follow the same steps as above by clicking the Brush tool and right-clicking anywhere on the canvas.
Right click on your window to open the Preset Manager and click on the gear icon as we did above. This time, click Get More Brushes.
After clicking, you will be redirected to a browser window, which will open the new versions of Adobe for Spring 2020 brushes.
Let’s load a second brush called Watercolor.
Please note that the file type is ABR file. Click OK to download the file. When you add brushes from this location, Photoshop will add the downloadable file to the bottom of the Brushes panel.
To find them, follow the same steps. Click the Brush tool, right-click in the Photoshop window, and scroll down to the bottom of the list of brushes. Watercolor will be at the bottom of the list.
How to install custom non-Photoshop brushes
Download the zip file from anywhere. Many of these are available on the Creative Market as add-ons.
Unzip it and find the .ABR file. In Photoshop, choose Edit> Presets> Presets Manager.
Click Load, navigate to the new brush file (make sure it’s an .ABR file) and click Open. Your new brush file will appear at the end of the list of brushes.
You can move the brushes you use most to a higher position in the list by dragging them up.
An alternative way to access brushes is to click the Brush tool icon in the left navigation bar. Check out the top navigation bar to see the different brush tool settings.
Click the arrow next to the brush in the top bar.
The number under the asterisk at the top of the navigation will open the list of brushes.
The sidebar shows the brush settings as well as all the available brushes.
How to use brushes in Photoshop
The Brush tool lets you do amazing things with your Photoshop projects. First, click on the Brush tool in the toolbar on the left.
Select a brush to start with and click on the image you are creating. Note that by clicking once, you will see one brush stroke.
Or, hold down the mouse and drag the cursor to draw more strokes.
The top toolbar lets you control the mode, opacity, flow, and size of any brush by changing settings. Please note that you must make changes before applying the brush.
To access additional settings, open the Brushes panel by clicking the square brush icon in the top navigation bar.
Changing these settings will help you know how each one affects the performance of different brushes.
Below is a screenshot of different brush strokes in different colors and sizes.
Change the size of the brush stroke using the settings in the navigation bar or using a shortcut. To increase the stroke, press the right bracket on your keyboard. To reduce the size, use a left parenthesis.
To change the colors, use the color palette to the right of the advanced settings pop-up window.
How to use the round brush
How to Use the Hard Shaped Brush
This brush has hard, hard edges. It’s a good tool for filling base layers or creating textures.
Start by clicking on the Brush Tool. Then use the dropdown at the top next to the brush icon to display the brushes available to you. Select a hard round brush.
In the image below, I used a Hard Round Brush to add texture to the existing sketch.
Use a Soft Round Brush
Use the Soft Round Brush
Soft round brushes vary in hardness. You can set them to 0 ° for a completely soft edge. Or, increase the stiffness level for more balance.
Use a Soft Round Brush for general blending, adding details and enhancing the highlights and shadows as shown in the sketch below.
Learn brush terminology
When it comes to different brushes and their uses, there are a huge number of options. Examining Photoshop settings and conditions of use will help you understand how best to use Photoshop brushes for your projects.
Some key brush terms include:
- Size refers to how small or large or thick or thin a brush stroke is.
- Strokes that create realistic effects such as grass are called bristles.
- Flip: Reverses the X or Y axis of the brush shape.
- Using the swatch size resets the original brush settings.
- Round or Square Brush Hardness refers to the faintness of edges, where 0 ° is the softest and 100 ° is the hardest.
- Change the look of the airbrush on tablets by changing the pen pressure.
- Spacing This parameter refers to the distance between the marks in the stroke.
- Stroke anti-aliasing values ??range from 0 to 100 (smoothest).
Have fun playing and testing all the cool and creative things you can do with Photoshop brushes. The best results require extensive experimentation and practice.