Advanced Techniques with Brushes in Photoshop® CC®

 

Advanced Techniques with Brushes in Photoshop® CC®

 

Lesson Info

Create Your Own Brush

Halftone brushes. So we're gonna start this next brush session. We're gonna talk about the watercolor brushes later, but now we talked about stamp brushing, we've talked about concept brushing, and now we're gonna talk about halftone brushes, very much like the illustration brushes. And, voila! Look how many there are. This is probably one of the most interesting things that Kyle's come up with, for me. Because it's a way of using halftone patterning for painting and doing imagery. Now, at a caveat, I do have to say, in my line of work I don't get an opportunity to do screen-printing option much. So this is a little bit out of my wheelhouse. But what's not out of my wheelhouse is to figure out how this brush works. So I definitely want to go through this with you. We're gonna spend a lot of time on the anatomy of the brush, because again, it's all well and good that I'm talking about doing these projects, but what are you gonna do with it when you get home? And how are you gonna use it...

? And I really want you guys to be able to think about how these brushes are, and how you can utilize it. If you took his brush here, what would you change to make that brush work for you, versus someone else? So we're gonna go ahead and dissect this brush. But I want to call attention, every time we start a new brush section, look at the icons. Do you notice how they're only brushes? There's no mixer brush in here. There's no smudge brush in here. Part of the reason for that is, in a smudge brush, you can't use textures. And I'll tell you for halftones, it is entirely 100% about the texture. Period, paragraph. I'm trying to give you guys clues as you're looking at brushes as you continue on. When you look at those little icons, you can kind of go, oh, wait, that's telling me something here. All right, let's see if we can get out of here. Go back to Photoshop. As we have done before, I'm gonna start with the original drawing once again, so we can talk about this in the same kind of manner as we've talked about the other stuff. So just like before, what I've asked you to do is on this kind of file, is go ahead and give yourself a line drawing, on the top. So what we have is that same sunflower, and we've got the same sample to pull colors from. And then I've done a little bit of a painting, that we're gonna talk about in masking, and a background, okay? So I'm gonna walk through this with you. Now, as on all of these, I've talked to you a little bit about these-- I'm gonna put my application framing-- It is on? Okay, great. I want to talk to you about the naming, again. Do you see how I have the names on these files? Please, I'm begging you, do yourself a favor and make sure you put your names, so you can see what you got going on. It'll make you, and everybody who is around you, and has to deal with you, much happier. All right, as we've started out on all of this before, what I keep telling you is, load up your brushes. So let's get your brush settings up. Here are our brushes. I'm gonna pull this window out, just so we can take a look. All right. I know there's a lot of window moving here. Don't let it freak you out too much. All right, so I'm gonna close up these windows. Again, I'm gonna really reiterate that I find that this is the greatest thing about Photoshop's new system, is I can scale this window down. And I can go, okay, where am I? And I can go find my brushes. So right now I want to talk to you about halftones and screens. So I'm gonna go to my halftone. In fact, I'll go to my halftone pattern here. I'm gonna just select the first one. Now, as I've said quite a few times, we know Kyle has made all these, and that's really nice. I think I'm gonna go ahead and delete his name, so I can read that a little easier. So that's gonna be a halftone pinwheel small. And we're gonna take a look at a brush, all right? Just move that up here. Come on, my friend. There we go. Come on, sweetheart. Here we go. I used to, back in the day, have this Buddha statue I had on top of my computer, and I left it there to make her behave. I'm thinking I'm bringing it the next time I come for a visit. All right, I'm gonna close this halftone window out. I'm gonna leave my guide up. I'm gonna turn the background off, and I'm gonna make a new window. And, oh, what did I say? Don't do that, don't make a new window first. New layer, pardon me. Pick your brush, we're gonna pick the pinwheel small. Double-click on the name, Command + C to copy the name. Make a new layer, Command + Shift + N, paste it with a name. Do you see? I'm not even in the habit of it yet. But you guys will start getting into the habit. I'm in the habit of naming my layers, but not starting with a layer. All right, I'm gonna turn this off. Actually, let me see if I have a black guide. I don't have a black guide this time. We're gonna have a color guide, do you guys mind? Is that kind of fun and exciting? I'll show you how to do that in a second. Excellent. So I'm gonna paint with this brush. So what do I have? I have, Kyle pinwheel small. I'm gonna pick a color. I'm gonna move my windows over, hang on one second. What color am I gonna pick? Oh, you know what I'm gonna do? We're gonna go here and pick a color here on the sample that we put in there, 'cause that's always handy, right? And we're gonna start brushing. What? Look at these halftone patterns. In fact, for just a second, I'm gonna turn this off. So what Kyle has created are these brushes that are literally halftone, or he calls them screen-toned sometimes. And let's take a look at the brush settings here for a second. We have a brush, the tip shape, we have the shape dynamics, and we have a texture. Ooh, we have a texture. This is where all the juicy bits happen. And we have a dual brush and we have a buildup. So what this brush is doing, and the primary goody bits are gonna be in here in the texture. It is taking this texture and utilizing that to do a pattern. And we're gonna talk about this in a second. I'm changing the scale of this brush. And it's gonna be a bit bigger one. It's all the same pattern. It's all the same pattern. And this is a smaller scale. It's the exact same brush, doing the exact same pattern. So what I'm gonna do real quick, for just a second, is I'm gonna take a few brushes and take a look at that. Let's do that trunch-it, for just a minute. We're gonna copy the name. Oh, you silly girl. She doesn't want to copy, let's do it here. Let's copy the name. Do you guys notice? I have to grab it from this section to copy the name, not the option bar. We're gonna do good work habits here. Move that over, and paste the name again, 'cause we're doing a different piece. Oh, okay, so that's a different pattern. It's got a little bit of a different pressure. As I build it up, it goes up to a certain level. But only a certain level, right? There's also something else going on here, that's very different from any of the other ones. The mode. The mode's on dissolve. So almost all of his paint brushes are on dissolve mode. So that's different, it's kind of unusual. And it took me a while to figure this out. Because you know what would be really cool in Photoshop? If some box came on and highlighted, and went, hey, look here, this is different! But, unfortunately, Photoshop doesn't do that. So you have to kind of figure it out yourself. And I'm gonna go through, I'm not gonna hand paint these all for you. I'm just gonna go ahead and turn these layers off and on, and we can just look at them, 'cause they're all named. And then we're gonna look at the function of them, and why they look the way they look. So I'm gonna slide on over here. Come on, my friend. All right. So, we have trunch-it, trunch-it? Can anyone say that better than me? Trunch-- (mumbling) We have circular square. So the circular square, looks like this. It is literally like a square and a circle. And do you guys see how bit-mappy that is? That's because when you paint it, it paints on a dissolve mode. And, in fact, that brush is almost always on a dissolve mode. Almost all of his pattern brushes are on a dissolve mode. I'm gonna do another one here that's not in a dissolve mode. Let me change the scale on that. Normal, dissolve, do you see that? Do you see how different it is on dissolve? I'm kind of guesstimating why he does that. I think when you do screen printing, there's kind of that chunky monkey look you'd like to have, that sharp edge thing. So I think that's why all his brushes are already set that way. I'm gonna go ahead and switch to the Keynote for just a second, 'cause I want to go over these settings with you. So we can look at why the brush is indeed doing why it's doing. There's a few things going on here. The buildup and the smoothing on the brush tip shape are definitely an area that you're gonna find that are different. The other thing, did you notice it had a dual brush? There's a new window that's popped up here. You'll notice when you look at the handout that there's more windows here. A new one that's coming up, is it's basically a dual brush. Because what it's doing is taking the pattern and using a circular brush, and using them in combination to make a dual brush, which makes this. You may have to trust me on this for a minute. But that's what this now, coming in here, dual brush. I have a section in the handout later, that's gonna explain to you how working with a pattern and a brush makes a dual brush. We're gonna talk about that in a little bit. So on the circular square, the normal blend mode looks like this. The dissolve kind of has this pixely edge to it. But all the rest of the stuff's all the same, right, the same stuff we've been talking about? Now this is a half brush-- That's just the piece of art done with a halftone. We can look at that later. This is kind of where the juicy bit-- No, this is not kind of, this is 100% where all the juicy bits are in a halftone brush. So a halftone brush, it's all about the texture. And what I have here, on his circular square, he has embedded in the texture file, and you can see it right here. I'm gonna show you how to look at it on the brush. That is his texture. And his texture happens to be named ktw check. I'm gonna guess his middle name is Tom or Thomas. Kyle Thomas Webber? What do you bet? I'm just throwing it out there, I'm guessing. So this is his checkered pattern. This is the pattern that is being used with a circle brush, a standard circle brush, to make this halftone pattern. And then what we're gonna do is we're gonna turn off some of these brush settings under the texture. We are only in the texture window here, and show how different this can be. These are sample patterns that you can use in lieu of this. These sample patterns aren't actually in this brush. This is just to show you, you can switch from that pattern to this pattern, which, you know what, he effectively has done to make all his brushes. He has simply switched out some of these patterns and switched out some of these settings. Coolio? So when you guys are re-watching this and you're looking at your files, this is when, without question, you want to have your handy dandy paperwork, because you're gonna want to look at your numbers. I just want to real quickly have you look at this overall. What you can see here for his patterns, before we go into this, I just want you to be able to see all the different patterns. Look, ultimately, what can I say? This is all the same kind of brush, it's just you've changed out the patterns, the screen. That is the only difference. So I will turn these on real quickly. I've got a background, fill, basically, the whole thing is filled with this pattern. And then I painted this little center. And what we haven't really talked about much with most of the other brushes, is masking. I'm gonna turn the center off. Do you see I have a mask here? I have a mask on this job, because these brushes, when you paint them, you can't really control. I mean, you could paint small if you want to. Did we mention I was a freight train? I think we mentioned, I'm a freight train. I tend to not paint gentle. I paint broad, and then I can go in and mask gently, or with a channel pull, but I don't paint-- It's just my style. So you can do this either way. You can paint perfectly the first time, or you can mask it out and paint a little more wild. So these are just different patterns I've put on. Layer one, that's really handy. Oh, that was my demo. I'll forgive myself for that one, all right. Hex small, used with different colors. Hex big, used for the center. Again, same idea. Do you guys all see that bit-map look? That's the dissolve brush. And then one more in the center, a little hex big. Do you see the hex big? I really want to call attention to this. This hex big, and this hex big copy, darker, lighter. Do you see how the pattern falls in perfect sync? I did not copy this layer, I repainted this layer. But I used the exact same brush. And because it's a pattern brush and the pattern is scaled and tiled over your document, it's in the exact same spot. Do you understand? So this is actually not a copy of that layer, it's me repainting. And why I wanted to show you that is, with the halftone brushes, the pattern is over the whole piece. And no matter where you brush, the pattern is not gonna shift, unless you change the scale. Anatomy of a halftone brush, by Lisa Carney. Pick the brush, let's just stick with the circle small, because I think it's his default, first brush. And let's just paint, and now let's go into the settings. All right, brush, the tip shape. I'm gonna pull this over just so we can look at it. The brush, the tip shape, is nothing. It's a standard circular brush. I'm gonna just, for giggles, turn all this off and I'll reset it. It's nothing, it's a standard circular, regular brush, okay? It's nothing. It's something, it's just a little something. All right, shape dynamics. We have pen pressure, on, no angle jitter, 'cause the jitters don't matter. Scattering, doesn't matter, 'cause this is a pattern brush. So why do I keep saying this pattern brush? Are you getting crazy, 'cause I keep saying pattern brush? I click on this icon here. These are the patterns. Remember we looked at those before? This pattern, I don't see that pattern. Do you see that pattern? I don't see that pattern. If I click on this icon here. Did something happen? I'm not sure. Let me click. (gasps ) Oh my god, something secret just happened. Do you remember I said that Kyle's got these brushes and they've got patterns buried in them? The patterns will not show up here. You don't see them, Sam I Am. A little Dr. Seuss reference there. So if you click on that little icon, you get a pattern now, that shows up in your pattern palette just so you can see it. You don't ever have to do this. It's just so you can see it. But now, if I go to my patterns, (gasps loudly) look, mama, it's there! So now these patterns are in your pattern fill. Why does that matter? It doesn't. It 100% doesn't matter, other than I am communicating to you that this is how this brush is made. Or, what if you're doing this painting and you want to do a whole fill of a background and it's huge, and you don't want to have to hand paint it, pull the pattern out and you can have it there. The only thing you'll have to do is colorize it. That's the only thing that the paintbrush allows you to do, is colorize it, where you'd have to hand do it here, attach a color to it. But no big deal. I'm just trying to give you an idea of how a halftone brush works. It's effectively, you are painting with a pattern. I'm hoping that's understandable. Now, within that, let's talk about those crazy little things. You change a little teeny button, and then everything changes. One of the big buttons you guys should be now, a little familiar with, is that darn texture tip. What? Look at that. Texture tip off, texture tip on. So how would I describe the difference? Let's take a look. Let me paint and we'll see. I'm gonna invite some of you guys to investigate Kyle's YouTube pages and look at his demos, 'cause he'll do painting. And one of the things you're gonna find when he does his demos, and actually most people, we all are at a loss for words to describe what is this. I'm not entirely sure I can explain to you what it does, but I will tell you, the beautiful thing about it is the brushstroke will show you what it does. So look, it got lighter. There's no fade-off. The fade-off's a moot point in this brush. But do you see that? Do you see that darkness? Versus that. Now, I put the texture tip off, and there is a fade, do you see that? So I can build up a bit. But it's not quite like a usual fade, like the masking will do. So texture tip, that's one thing that makes a huge difference. Oh, we've talked about this before, it's this thing. What happens when you change that? So now, I've got the texture tip on, but I've got linear height on. Okay, so now it's all blocked up. Okay, I'm not panicking. Why I'm not panicking, well, I'm panicking a little, but only a little. It's gonna show you what it does. It will build up more, okay? What do you do with this? I'm not entirely sure. One of the things we've been talking about throughout this course, is doing a sample, right, doing a test art. What I would suggest on a piece like this, is get some screen art. What's that artist's name? He did the Hope posters. Shepard Fairey. Shepard Fairey. He does a lot of halftone looks. What if you took some of his samples, and brought them up, and tried to emulate them. And look at the scale of his halftone, he's got a lot of halftone dots in his, and start practicing. And take one brush, don't take 17 brushes. Take one brush and go, okay, if I change the scale, if I change the scale-- I'm gonna pick another yellow real quick. Same brush, regular. All right, what if I changed the scale? Oh, no, that's different. Do you see that? That's a little different. All right, maybe, what did we do? We turned that linear light on. All right, let me go back to the scale. Let me go back to my brush. Go back to your Photoshop, all right. That's regular, all right, cool. The scale's at 17%, the mode's on height. All right, what if I changed that height to linear height now, with the smaller-- Okay, oh, okay look. It's more like-- I have a makeup analogy. I've changed the linear height. I'm able to do a light, and then possibly build up heavier. So what's the takeaway from that? All right, so maybe I want to have a image that's darker on the side and then fades out. You just want to change your linear height. Now, this is gonna make some of y'all a little crazy. Don't let it make you crazy, just take a look. Okay, it was height, change height to linear height. Okay, no buildup, got it. Note, put it on your paper, no buildup. Now, I've given y'all a sample of what these changes. So if you change that, you get this, if you change that, you get that. I've also told you what the brush name is, so you will see it. You will actually know which brush you have, and hopefully that'll help you guys follow along. And then there's a couple other changes we need to talk about, 'cause it wouldn't be fair if I didn't make your head hurt, just a little tiny bit more. And that would be color dynamics on this. So, the scale, we talked about the scale already, so I'm not gonna repeat that. I'm just gonna show it to you. On the same texture, that's the scale 17. This is the scale 68. Same exact piece, just you're scaling-- You know when you add a pattern in Photoshop, you have that option to change the scale. That's what this is doing. It's just doing it for you, and then you're painting through it, okay? The other thing is on the Kyle, on the halftone, excuse me, you can change the color dynamics, just like with the impressionist brush. So let's go to the color dynamics. Let's turn that on. On his brushes, by and large, you will see it's not turned on. I'm gonna turn pen pressure on. Oh, okay, now I can get that kind of groovy look, and do this, and paint through this. So the long and short of these brushes, these halftone brushes, is there is a whole nother way of doing this art, rather than doing these brushes. You could, for example, load that pattern up in Photoshop, make a channel, and paint through it. Make a mask, and paint through it. And get the exact same results that he has. But he's an illustrator. I think I feel like I should show you what I'm talking about. We made that pattern. We actually didn't made it, we stole his pattern. Do you remember channel pulls? Hopefully you guys out there know what a channel pull, it's when you use the channels. So, make a selection. I'm gonna grab the channel by its name, drag it to the Load a Selection icon. I'm gonna close that channel up. I'm gonna close this layer up. I'm gonna go back to my layers, move this back down, 'cause you're gonna agree with me. There you go. I'm gonna make a brand new layer. Color fill. I'm gonna put a mask on it, just so I have it. I have just made a mask. That means I can paint on this layer any way I want. I'm gonna fill this layer with white. I'm gonna take a paintbrush that is not, that is not a Kyle halftone. It's a regular hard paintbrush. I got the exact same result as what he did. So why am I telling you this? I'm telling you this so that you don't actually have to use these particular brushes, but I want you to understand how they're made or why they're made. So if you want the same look and you're having too much trouble figuring out all the brush settings, just load the channel and make yourself-- But use his channels. He's figured out these really cool halftones. And you can have them, and use them, and play with them. Yes, darling? Question, with each of these patterns, it appears that they are situated at the same horizontal or vertical, that they are in the pattern box. Is it possible to rotate them slightly? I do not believe so. I do not know how to do that. And my work-around for that would be to do this. I can only give you a work-around for that, is to merge your pattern. And then you can rotate and move them as you want. There might be a way to do it in the brush-it, and perhaps I can answer that at the next section, but I don't know how to do that off the top of my head. Cool, it's a good question though. It's a very good question. So again, I really want to reiterate, halftones are not part of my workflow and job flow. As we talked about earlier, find some art that you want. These are Kyle's pieces that he's donated. And take a look and see if you can recreate the art using his brushes. The takeaway for this brush is texture, texture, and then a little more texture. That's where this entire brush lives. And that he uses dissolve mode, okay? Oh, my sweet Jesus, look at all these. You get all of these, okay? So inside this handout, and he gives this, you can see what his textures do and what they look like. I would have a guide out, because I don't know about you, but the names don't always work for me. And I like to just see what they're gonna look like. And he shows them how you can create different textures that way, using his textures. Anyway, I hope you guys understand, basically, how a halftone brush is made. What I wanted to show you now is how would you make a halftone brush texture of your own. And all you need to do is make a pattern. So we talked about, they're basically patterns, right? So you need to have a pattern to make a pattern, I mean, to make a pattern brush. So what you want to do is make a pattern. You can either hand draw your own, do you remember that symmetry tool we showed you in the front? You could make your own hand-done one? I like to just find a tile that's already available. So let me see if I have that loaded, and I can show you that. So what am I showing you now? I am basically showing you how you can make your own brush using a square. I'm just gonna have to find that, 'cause that was in segment two, how to make a seamless pattern. All right, so I have this pattern that I found, that I like. And it's called Indigo Love. We do Command + All to copy, or I have it, you don't actually have to do that anymore. I'm gonna do a pattern, so let's follow along. I have a file that is already a seamless tiled file. Let me be very clear. It is seamlessly tiling pattern. I'm gonna hit Define Pattern. Indigo Love, let's call it that. It's calling it the name of the file, which is kind of cool. I'm gonna hit OK. Now, when I go to my pattern section here-- Oh, look! It's right there. Isn't that nice? It's there next to Kyle, they're gonna become friends. They're gonna like each other. You can change the scale, if you like small or large. Let's just make it 89% now. And then there's my pattern, it's just sitting there. That's all very nice and good. I'm gonna close this, and I'm gonna go back and open my halftone document. Or I'm not gonna open the halftone document, and I'm gonna open it from over here. All right, I've got my new document, just gonna close this up. Do you remember I said you could fill with a pattern from his brush? That's me filling his little pinwheel pattern. All right, we don't need any of this. We're gonna start here. I've got a basic color sample. I'm gonna pick Kyle's brush. Shall we use that halftone pinstripe wheel? Sure. We're gonna go to our brush settings. Brush settings are your favorite things. It's already loaded over here. Brush settings, you're down here. Where did I say all this lived? I said, it's all about the texture. You following along? Same brush, it's in the can. You go home, you got this brush, you're gonna load it, it's right there, here it is. Do you see this? All here, it's on your handout, all right here. You're gonna pick this. I would like some Indigo Love, please. I have a new brush, and now I can paint with my Indigo Love. Well, do you remember with the other brushes that pixel size was kind of important, that scale? The scale of Kyle's pattern is not the scale of my pattern. We're not panicking, we're gonna delete that. We're gonna lower the scale. Aww, now it's Indigo Love. It's not square color choo-choo train, it's Indigo Love. And now we can go to color dynamics if we want to and switch that up, and we've now made our own brush. You guys, it's really, really easy, you just have to make a pattern. That's all you have to do. You could anything. You could do crosses, you could do circles, you could do a bubble brush, make a pattern out of it, and make a halftone. All right, everyones' head just went (quiet pop) pop. Okay, it's a halftone brush. What you're gonna do with it, it's up to you. I really, really, really, want to encourage you guys to do project-based work. And that means go look, find a sample of an artist that you already like, and then mimic their work. On the handout, it will show you, so you can do this at home, it will show you what happens when you change the scales and the colors. We've already run through all of this. This is the hue saturation, and then these are the boxes that'll make you happy, or not happy. It'll make you pull your hair out. It's all about the texture.

Class Description

The brush tool allows you to paint onto your image in a way that makes your final photo truly a work of art. Hollywood high end retoucher Lisa Carney goes in depth on how to control and take advantage of the opportunities that brush tools give you. With the 2017 updates to Adobe® Photoshop® CC®, using brushes has become even easier. Lisa will teach:

  • How to create custom brushes
  • Organizing techniques
  • How to illustrate in Photoshop® for the “non painter”
  • Retouching with brushes for hair and skin

There are many different ways to use brushes within Photoshop®, and you can start to master them with this in-depth course.