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When you visit an art supply store, the various media are organized into aisles and shelves. Then within these specific areas, you'll find various flavors of the tool you're looking for. This organization makes it easy to quickly find what you're seeking as well as offer associated variations that may be useful. Painter organizes all of its art- making tools into two primary organizational aisles and shelves, the Category and the Variant. Now the Brush Selector bar is the front door to Painter's art supply store.
The Brush Selector bar's aisles are the categories, and that's the first icon you find here on the left. So all of the various aisles within Painter that represent all of the different types of media are going to be in this first drop-down menu. So these are our categories. Now let's select the category. For example, let's say you want to get some chalk. We'll go to the Chalk aisle. So now we're in the Chalk aisle, or in this case in Painter, the Chalk category and now we want to look on the shelves and find a specific type of chalk.
That's where the Variant drop-down comes in. That's the one on the left. So when we click on this, we're going to find all of the variants within the Chalk category. So let's select Square Chalk for example. So I'll go down and I'll select it. Now you've got a specific variant from a specific category, or to use the analogy, you've got a specific type of chalk from a specific aisle. This is the way that all of Painter's brushes are organized. It's that simple. So the Brush Selector bar basically reduces all the complexity of brush libraries down to a couple clicks.
So one of the things you're going to hear me say is "variant," and sometimes I'm going to say "brush" and I just want to point out it's very easy to use both of those terms for essentially what is the current variant or brush that you're using. So don't get too confused when you hear me use brush in place of variant or vice versa. They really mean the same thing, but in terms of the vocabulary of Painter, variant really is the correct terminology for what that specific brush is.
That's all there is to it.
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