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In Painter 11 Essential Training, John Derry, one of the original Painter authors, demonstrates basic and advanced creative techniques that can get beginners up and running. He also shows old hands the new features that can get a creative vision out of the head and onto the canvas. John demonstrates how to establish an easy workflow in Painter by using a Wacom tablet, and he explains how to create, edit, and publish projects. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download the Painter/Photoshop Consistent Color Management PDF and the Brush Troubleshooting Checklist PDF from the Exercise Files tab.
So in the proceeding videos, we have learned a bit about how to play around with creating brushes and using the various effects in the Brush Creator, using the Randomizer, the Transposer, the Stroke Designer, to start to get into designing your own brushes and one of the things I want to go over is just how you manage brushes that you create, because it's easy to kind of get a little confused about it and not know where things are going or what to do. There is a way to do it outside of Painter, but that gets a little bit more technical and it can be done in Painter.
So I'm going to show you how you can do this so that you can easily create new brushes, even create new categories and organize your brushes the way you want. So let's start with this Festive Brush that I created earlier. Now I went ahead and I created it and as you remember, I have put it back into the Pens category where it came from and many times when you create a brush out of the category that it came from, it very well may be the best place to put that brush. So oftentimes, you don't need to do anything. It will just be a new brush added to that category.
In this case it started out as a pen, but I call it the Festive Brush, so maybe I need to move it. So the first thing we are going to do is look at and you can't just move a variant out of one folder and into another. It takes a couple of steps to get rid of it and move it. So let's first look at copying the variant. Now, we are going to go up while we are in the Brush Creator to the Variant menu here and I'm going to go to Copy Variant. So I'll go ahead and I click this. This let's me place this in any category I want. So I may decide that this goes into the F-X category.
That's kind of a catchall category for brushes to do a variety of just kind of different weird things. So that's probably a good category to put it in. So I'm going to go ahead and say OK. So let's just go ahead and look in there. Let's go down to the F-X category and let's pop this open and sure enough, the Festive Brush is right in there between Fire and Fairy Dust now. We now have our Festive Brush. So we have been able to easily place it into a different category. That's a start right there. Now let's go back to Pens. I accidentally created a Custom palette, which we'll talk about later.
Let's go back into Variants here and this is where I can now delete that variant. If I decided, okay I started out in Pens, but I have now created a copy of it. I don't want it in Pens anymore because I think of it as an F-X category brush. I can go ahead and say Delete Variant and it says Delete the User-Created "Festive Brush" variant of Pens? Yes, I do want to do that, so I say Yes. So now we go back into the Variant pop-up and that pen is gone. So we have successfully migrated a pen out of a category that we didn't wanted in anymore and placed it into the category that we wanted to without duplicating it.
So right there we now know how to move a brush to another category and delete a brush from a category. So we have already got the tools in place for being able to reorganize brushes into different libraries if we want. The next step I'm going to show you here and this is another one, it's a little bit of a cloudy area for a lot of Painter users, is how do I create a new category? I have got all these categories but every once in a while on the web you will see people that have their own category of brushes and it's like, how do they do that? Well, there are some steps you have to take and I'm going to go through those for you to explain how you create your own category and it actually doesn't occur in the Brush Creator.
Because of the tools you need to use, it actually occurs over in the actual Painter application. So let's hide the Brush Creator and go over to Painter and the thing that is required here is a command that actually exists over in the Brush Selector bar in the Option menu and you will see it's grayed out right now, because I have other things I need to do, but there is a command here, Capture Brush Category. That's what we want to be able to do. Now, let me explain why we do this. Painter keeps track of all of these files, actually in a folder-wise fashion within the Painter application and within your User folder.
It's actually duplicated, so that you have got the factory settings and you have got your adjusted settings as you create them. In order for Painter to recognize the existence of a category and display it up here, it needs two things. It needs a folder for example for F-X, there is a folder called F-X. There is also an icon called F-X.jpg. That's what this is. If you have the category folder F-X, but you do not have that F-X.jpg file in there, it won't create it because it has to have it because this is necessary to display in here in order for that category to pop-up into this list.
Without the F-X, in this case .jpg file, you can have the category folder and all your variant files in it and it won't appear and that confounds a lot of people, because they don't realize that you have to have the category folder as well as a same named JPEG file and it can't be just any JPEG file. That JPEG file must be 30x30 pixels. If it's any other size, Painter doesn't recognize it. So you have to live by these rules in order to create a new category.
Now the art of creating icons is kind of a whole skill unto itself and we are not going to go into deep investigation about that now. But what I have done is create a category of icon that I have in Chapter 8 here, Category Icon.rif. So let's open that up and what we are going to see here is this is a little category icon. It looks very similar to the other icons and here I have tinted it blue, so it looks a little different, just to give it a little segregation from the other ones, so it visually pops out.
So this is a 30x30 icon. So, in order for us to be able to create one, you can see it's still grayed out. That's because you have to select this in order for it to be recognized as something it can capture. So I'm just going to double- click and that selects all. So I have now selected the entire area of this icon. Now if you don't have the materials and content that comes with this, anything you want to create that's 30x30 and capture it, you can use that as your icon and just use your design skills or put a letter in there.
You can do anything you want. But the bottom line, I can't say it enough, it must be 30x30 pixels. That's the major regulation you have to live by. So now if we go up here, you can see Capture Brush Category is highlighted. That's because we have selected that 30x30 square in that file. So I'm going to click on it and now it's going to say well Save As and we'll just call it MyBrushes. Say OK and what do you know, there is a new category and here is another thing. It will appear by default at the bottom of the list.
Later on, when I get in a little bit to talking about customizing the interface, I'll show you how you can put this anywhere you want in this list. But by default, it's going to put it into bottom and also can confound users because sometimes where a new category is added and in this particular monitor is setup, see I kind of opened this all the way. So you could look at this and think, where did it go? It's not there. It's there. It's just at the very bottom of the list right now. I assure you later on I'll show you how to adjust the placement in the file. But we have now got a new empty category.
It has to put at least one brush in there. So it just kind of made a dummy brush to start with, so there is at least one item in that category. But let's go back and remember we were in the Brush Creator to do this before. Well, you will see that those controls are all mirrored right in here, so we really don't have to go to the Brush Creator now. We can go ahead and say I want to copy a variant. First of all I have to find my brush. Let's go to F-X. Let's find the Festive Brush. Now we'll go up and we'll say let's copy the variant and where do I want to copy it to? Well, I want to copy it to My Brushes.
So I say okay and let's jump over to My Brushes. Sure enough, look there it is. We now have the Festive Brush in My Brushes. If I want to go ahead and do the same thing we did earlier, I can now go and just one again return back to F-X, the Festive Brush. Now I can say I want to delete a variant and do you want to delete the Festive Brush variant? I sure do, yes, get rid of it. So now we no longer have this brush in just a category we placed it in. We have now got it in our own category. So this is how you can create new categories, move brushes around, place them into the categories the way you want and as I said, later on in the customization chapter, I'm going to show you how you can totally control the content of all of these.
So bear with me and let's continue on through the rest of the title, but we'll eventually get to how to further customize this so you can even organize more the way you want.
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