Learn about the colorization option with custom brushes.
One of the great things about brushes is the ability to change their colors. This is accomplished using two methods in conjunction with each other. Editing the brush colorization methods, and editing the stroke color. I've already created two scatter brushes for us. They're based on the black blades of grass, and the multicolored blades of grass, and here's what they look like applied to paths with no colorization set. I'm going to edit the black blades of grass brush by changing the colorization method.
We have a pull down menu here which will allow you to choose from these choices. We're going to start with tints. I'm going to click okay, and I'm going to apply to strokes. You can see that nothing has changed in our artwork, and that's because the stroke color on both of these paths is actually set to black. Even though the multicolored shades of grass display as green. They're being based on the original color of the artwork, which in this case was multiple colors, and in this case it was black, but when we change our colorization method to tints, and we change the stroke color to something else.
You can see that the path is now updated with that new color. Tints is the most common colorization method that you're going to work with. The tints colorization method will allow you to display the brush with a stroke color that you've selected. Portions of the art that are black become the stroke color. Portions that aren't black become tints of the stroke color, and white remains white. You can choose tints for brushes that are in black and white, or when you want to paint a brush stroke with a spot color. Think of it as painting in tints of the stroke color.
Let see what it does on our multicolored shades of grass. I'm going to click okay and apply to strokes, and you can see that the results are tints of the original stroke color. When you pick a color it takes on that color plus its color's tints. The next option in the colorization pull down menu is tints and shades. Tints and shades displays the brush stroke in tints and shades of the stroke color. Tints and shades maintains black and white. If I apply this to our black grass, you can see that nothing happens.
If we apply it to the multicolored blades of grass and click okay and apply to strokes, you can see we get different results. What happens is everything between black and white becomes a blend from black to white through the stroke color. You can choose tints and shades for brushes that are in grayscale or have a variety of hues in the original artwork. Black and whites are always unaffected, while the stroke color will change everything else to tints of that color. If your art is a dark color, you're going to see less of an effect.
It essentially applies the stroke color on top of the current color. The colorization that is applied will either display any color other than black as shades of that color. This means that it's adding black or tints, lighter percentages of that stroke color. The final colorization method is hue shift. Let's change the multicolored blades of grass to hue shift and click okay, and apply to strokes. You can see that the results are very different. Everything in the brush artwork is going to change based on the key color that is chosen.
The key color is set by default to the most prominent color in the artwork. Any other colors in the brush artwork become colors that are related to that stroke color. The colors are changed relative to their position from the base color on the color wheel. Hue shift will maintain black and white and gray. If I change the the key color, and I can do that by using the eyedropper tool, and sampling a different color from my blades of grass, and click okay. You can see that we'll get different sorts of results.
Darker colors will affect light areas as well. While light colors do not react in the same way. Hue shift is great for brushes that use multiple colors. The colorization setting is available for all brush types. Not just scatter brushes, and it works in the same way for all brushes. I find that under normal circumstances tints is probably the most useful colorization setting since it allows your artwork to take on the stroke color, but in some cases you may find that one of the other colorization methods will work better for you.
I recommend experimenting with the colorization settings based on your needs and on your original artwork. Here I've provided you with a color chart that shows the different colorization methods using our blades of grass as an example. You can see that the settings are going to be different based on the key color that I've specified. In this particular example, I'm using green as the stroke color for all of the artwork, but the results that we get are going to vary depending on the original artwork, and the on key color that I've chosen.
- Working with Illustrator brushes
- Loading preset brushes
- How brushes respond to variations
- Changing colorization options
- Adding textures and effects
- Segmenting a brush
- Creating a watercolor effect
- Incorporating shading
- Distributing on a path
- Adding endcaps
- Creating a complex pattern
- Using gradients
- Combining brushes
- Saving custom art brushes