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Join John Derry, a pioneer in the field of digital painting, as he shows how to master the natural-media painting features introduced in Photoshop CS5 in Photoshop CS5: Painting with the Mixer Brush. This course shows how to use the Mixer Brush, the Bristle Tips feature, and a new mechanism for blending colors in Photoshop to add beautiful, painterly effects to photographs, enhance artwork with paint-like strokes and illustrations, and paint entirely new art from scratch. This course also covers customizing brush characteristics and surface textures, applying keyboard shortcuts to paint smoothly and efficiently, and using a Wacom tablet to get the most out of Photoshop CS5’s painting features. Exercise files are included with the course.
Loading and clean your brush affects the behavior of how strokes are applied to the canvas. You have a choice of whether you want to do this manually or have Photoshop take care of it for you automatically. In this movie, we'll take a look at both methods. Up until now, I've been using these controls both turned on, and we're now going to talk about what these do. The Load control loads the brush for you automatically, after each stroke. And when it's enabled its dark,; when it's disabled it's light.
The second control is the Clean control. This cleans your brush after each stroke, and like the first control when it is disabled, it is white, and when it's enabled it's dark. Let's take a look at how these work. Now to start with, when these are both on and I started to paint, each stroke is always loaded, and each stroke will always clean itself after each stroke is produced. Now what happens, for example, if I turn off the ability to fill the color well, each time the stroke is produce? Well what happens is we don't get anything, but this turns this in to a pure blending brush.
So this is one technique that takes a brush that normally produces color, and by turning off the color well, you essentially are saying 'I only want it to pick up color,' and now it becomes a very nice blending brush. Also note that when these are on, the Color Preview shows me the fact that that is what's going to happen. It's going to apply the current color, which we have down in the color square, to the canvas. But as soon as I turn this off, now we see the Transparency checkerboard, and that's telling me that, once again, it's only going to blend color.
When I turn off the Clean control, now what's going to happen is it's going to mix, but notice I am going to stop on the yellow. I am going to pick up, and I am going to come over somewhere else, and see how the last color I touched became the first part of that stroke. Now in this case, I ended right here, on the light blue. When I go over here, that becomes the color that is picked up. So what this does is it gives you a dirty brush technique, and that means that each time I paint, I am getting colors from the existing color on the canvas as my brush color.
And what you'll see happen is here, it'll slowly just kind of become a solid or grayish color, because we're just constantly mixing these colors together. But this does give you a technique of a dirty brush. Now I can also - and notice that in the little Color Preview it's showing me that little dirty area that's otherwise transparent. Let's try another combination. We'll turn this on, so now we're going to apply color with each stroke, but we're not going to clean the brush.
So I'll have some red contributing to the stroke, but wherever I stop, that color green that I ended up on contaminates the beginning of the stroke until I start painting, and the current color is added to it. So each of these methods of adjusting how the color is contributed, and whether or not it's contributing at all, can be controlled by both of these automatic Load and Cleaning buttons. You also have the option to do this manually.
If we go over to the Current Brush Load Preview, and I click on this, you'll see that I can now manually load the brush. So if I manually load the brush, rather than doing it automatically, I now have a loaded brush. The next time I use it, it's going to start to be a contaminated dirty brush once again. So it takes coming up to here to load the brush with color. There it is. It's on there. But each time I start to use it subsequently, it's going to become a dirty brush once again.
Now if I come back up and select Clean brush, this will make it a blending brush temporarily, but because it's not cleaning itself each time automatically, it will revert to becoming a dirty brush that picks up previous color, and adds it to the beginning of the next stroke. Now I am going to show you, in Chapter 8, how we can take these controls and apply keyboard shortcuts to them, as well as control them from the control surface of the Wacom tablet, and you'll see that that probably gives you the best way to control when and how these work.
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