Defining custom brushes in Photoshop is a quick and easy way to create various kinds of shapes and textures, especially if they are small and you need them in large quantities.
In this tutorial, the author shares the secret of drawing bubbles for his work:
Defining the shape of brushes
If you want to create a custom brush, then first of all you need to determine its shape. The brush that you are going to create should be in gray (black on white): black is used where the brush should be opaque, and white is where there should be no color. Opaque brush locations depend on filling the image with gray.
Paint the brush in the shape of an air bubble white on black – this is a must! So you will achieve more successful results in which your brush will look like the final image.
Use a soft white brush to paint beaded shapes on a black background. The author gave the brush a somewhat vague look so that the bubbles did not have a clear shape. When you get what you want to get, then invert the image (Ctrl-I).
Now make the tool active. Rectangular marquee (Rectangular selection) and select a square around the drawn image. The author recommends leaving a small space of white color around the edges. Next, do the following: Edit – Define Brush Preset (Define brush settings) and save the created brush.
You have created a brush shape, now we will start using it!
Customize brush settings
It’s time to call the panel. Brushes (Brushes). It is usually located in the upper right of the screen. Make the tool active Brush (Brush), otherwise the brush dialog box functions will not be available.
In the dialog box Brush presets (Brush Settings), click on the line Brush tip shape (Brush print form) and find the brush you created. It is possible that you want to adjust the diameter of the brush on your own. The author used a diameter of 40 pixels. This size affects the size in the preview window – leave it as it is. You can return to this at any time and change the size.
So you created a custom brush!
As you can see in the preview window, this is not a very impressive and especially useful result. The author proposes to work on improving it.
Everyone knows that realistic bubbles move in a straight line. To simulate this effect, click Scattering (Scattering) in the panel Brushes (Brushes). Play a little with the settings to understand what they affect. The author wanted to achieve a small dispersion along both axes. Both axes (Both axes). He left the Count parameter (Counter) equal to 1, so that the bubbles do not overlap one another.
The brush starts to look more believable, but that’s not all.
Shape dynamics (Dynamics of Form)
With this option you will make bubbles of different sizes.
Click on row Shape dynamics (Dynamics of form) on the panel Brushes (Brushes). The author has set the parameter Size jitter (Size fluctuation) 100% and Minimum Diameter (Minimum diameter) 1% to get both the smallest and very large bubbles.
You will have uniform bubbles if you don’t set parameters Angle jitter (Angle oscillation) and Roundness jitter (Oscillation form). The small value set in this parameter will give the effect of bubbles moving in different directions. If you set a large value of this parameter, then the lighting on the bubbles will look ridiculous. Roundness jitter (Fluctuating the shape) will give a slightly different shape to the bubbles, but make sure that Minimum Diameter (Minimum diameter) guarantees the volume of bubbles.
Looks better already, isn’t it? But there is one more parameter to set up!
Other Dynamics (Other Dynamics)
This setting could be called the opacity dynamics, because this is what happens when you set this parameter. Set the parameters Opacity jitter (Fluctuation opacity), as in the screenshot, to give a variety of volume.
Use and save your brushes
The brush is ready to use! Choose a light navy color on a watery background. Create a new layer, blend mode set Color dodge (Lightening the basics), draw bubbles with a new brush. Experiment, apply different blending modes and adjust the layer opacity and the transparency and size of the bubbles to get an acceptable result.
Does it work well? Let’s save the brush for future use!
Click on the tiny arrow in the upper right corner of the Brushes panel and in the drop-down menu select New brush preset (New brush settings) to save the current settings for the brush, which can be used later.
After saving, you can export your brushes to share it with others. In the menu, click Save Brushes (Save brushes) to save the current set of brushes. Keep in mind that the brushes saved in Photoshop CS and CS2 are not compatible with Photoshop 7.
You can use these brush settings for painting:
– Weather effects (snow, rain …)
– Soap bubbles
– Dripping on foliage or grass
– Thin lens lighting effects
– Distant flock of birds
Or for anything that is enough for your imagination … Good luck!