Photoshop's tool preset panel is the glue that puts the natural media brushes on the map. John reviews the tool and the brush presets to help you utilize your pastel brushes.
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- [Voiceover] Photoshop utilizes two types of formats for storing and organizing its various mark-making tools. One of the ones that users are most familiar with is Brush Presets, which save all of the settings found in the Brush panel. The second format is Tool Presets, which saves everything in the Brush panel, but also saves all of the settings found in the Mixer brush options bar. Now why is this important for us? The pastels used in this course are built using the Mixer brush. As a result, you won't find any of these pastels in the Brush Presets panel.
Rather, they will be found in the Tool Presets. Because we typically use the term brushes to refer to these mark-making tool presets, it can get pretty confusing when talking about them. There are even pastel brushes found in the Brush Presets, however these brushes don't utilize the Mixer brush, and cannot do all of the tricks that my tool preset pastels are capable of. I will generally use the term brush when describing these pastel emulating tools. But rest assured, that unless I state otherwise, I am talking about tool presets in this course.
I've set up the Pastels LE workspace that we'll be using in this course to make it easy to select and use these brushes. In fact, this is pretty much the way I work whenever I'm doing natural media painting and drawing in Photoshop. By the way, the LE stands for Lynda Edition. Let's go ahead and take a look at the layout here. And I'm gonna go up to the upper-left corner. As I was saying earlier, when you say "go get a brush" in Photoshop, most people will go right here, to the Brush Presets. And most of the time they're correct.
However, the Mixer brush is a special case. And, as a result, I save them as tool presets. Now, this is the Tool Presets panel over here to the far right. And you can see all the pastel brushes are in here. But I want to show you what happens. First of all, it looks like that's the brush tool right now. If we go over, and I've basically duplicated this list over here on the right. Now why would I have done that? The thing that I find a little off-putting about this set up over here, is if I'm working and drawing and painting in here, and I want to change a tool, I've got to go up to the upper left, click to open it up, go down, find another brush, click to close it, and then I can start drawing again.
And that's a lot of work to go through just to change brushes. It throws me off of my concentration and focus for doing the task at hand. So rather than use this, I've set up the Tool Presets panel over here, so that way, if I'm working with this, and I want to change tools, so all I have to do is go over here, and say, pastel pencil, in this case, and I'm switched. So I did that with one click. Whereas over here it takes multiple clicks. Now this is much more efficient if you're gonna be using mark-making tools, like our pastels, to just be able to click on a name in a list, and you're on your way, you're done.
And here's the thing about these. This is, we're now in the Mixer brush, and up here are a set of controls that are unique to the Mixer brush. When you save a brush preset, it doesn't even know this exists, it doesn't save them at all. You know, all of the things that are in the Brush palette, which I've got set up here in the little side icons, is where anything you set in here does get saved. But none of that does. And the only way to save all that together is as a tool preset.
So, for example, you can see how this is set up right now, if I click to, you know, a very different brush, see how those settings have changed? If I went through the exercise of saving this as a brush preset, it will save the tip setting, and all of that, but it doesn't know anything about this, and these are the controls that make tool presets do what they do. One other thing I want to talk about here, is, you'll see right down here it says Current Tool Only. I think by default it may even be checked.
And right now it looks like, well, there's no difference. Why wouldn't I want that checked? Let's go to a different tool, like the Move tool. Now look what happens, see, it says No tool presets defined for this current tool. If this is on, it's only going to show you any presets saved for any of these various tools. If I turn it off, however, see now I'm in the Move tool but I'm still seeing my pastel presets here. So this lets me move from one tool to another. In fact I can be in the Move tool, click on this, and boom, I've not only switched tools, but I've also got the specific brush that I want.
So once again, it's more efficient, I think, to rely on the Tool Presets panel over here. It gives you quick access, and it's always there, so it's a persistent set of tools that you can use. By now, you should have a fairly good notion of the difference between Brush and Tool Presets. As we will see in this course, my tool presets can emulate pastels better than any brush preset version.
- Customizing brush performance, tilt, and pressure response
- Using surface texture
- Roughing out the sketch
- Adding color
- Creating tonality with blending