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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.
When you create a useful brush in Photoshop, you're most likely going to want to save it for future retrieval and use. It is easy to assume that saving your expressive instrument as a Brush preset would be the way to go, but you definitely want to save it as a Tool preset. In this video, we'll find out why. The first thing is to think of Tool presets as a higher level of Brush preset. They capture more information. They capture everything that the Brush preset, would plus the brush tip shape, the various dynamics, whatever is in the Option bar; all of these are part of a Tool preset.
They are not part of a Brush preset. I'm going to show you what I mean. I'm going to just scramble up these settings, so that they're random right now, because I'm going to compare a couple of different brushes to show you what I mean. Okay, we've completely changed what we've done here. I'm going to go to Brush presets. I've saved a Brush preset. It's named the same as one that's over in the Tool presets here. So first, let's load the Brush preset. Okay, it loaded, and it's doing something, but notice what the settings are.
The settings are still whatever I randomized them to, and this isn't really the behavior I intend with this brush. Now, I'm going to load the Tool preset, and watch, particularly, what happens up here. You see all of that information has been saved? This is the intended behavior of this brush; so all of the work that I did in setting the Transfer settings, up all of this are part of this Tool preset. Once again, if we switch over to the Brush preset here, it's going to just use whatever is here.
So if these are different settings, it will be in the Brush preset, nothing really changes. Some items may be saved, but this definitely is not retrieving the brush the way I intended it to start. So a Brush preset is definitely the way you want to save brushes. Another nice advantage of Tool presets is that when I'm in another tool, I can still select this from the list, and get that brush. On the other hand, if I'm in another tool, notice the Brush Preset list isn't even active.
I have to first switch to a brush to get to it. It's just an extra workflow change that you have to make. The beauty of the Tool Preset list is that it's always available, and ready for you to select from. So particularly when you're in painting activity where you're relying on Mixer brushes that you've saved, you can have this list available no matter what the tool is, and instantly get to those brushes. So your brushes are literally one click away, rather than having to move, make a click to a brush, go back, and select it.
So when you're saving your brushes, be sure to use a Tool preset to capture everything about the brush. You want to save your Tool presets to prevent accidental loss. The other thing is you can also share these Tool presets with other users, so it's a great way to be able to take your work, and be able to share it with others. In another video in this chapter, we're going to take a look at the actual process of saving a Tool preset.
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