Procreate is an incredible app that allows you to create digital artwork. From charcoal to spray paints, there are a variety of brushes to choose from to unleash your inner Picasso.
But what if you would like to create and use a brush from scratch, or even use and refine an existing brush? Grab your note-taking tablet and read on to learn how to make custom Procreate brushes as well as how to create Procreate brushes from scratch.
How To Make Custom Brushes In Procreate
It may seem daunting at first, but it’s quite easy (and fun) learning how to make a brush in Procreate. There are a number of steps you can follow to customize your perfect brush.
Step 1: Open the Brushes Library
The Brush Library in Procreate boasts “the world’s biggest library of brushes”. It is from here that you can select any of the default brushes the app has available.
Open the Procreate app and create a new canvas. Look at the top of the screen and you’ll see the brush icon there. Click on it and the Brush Library will open and display an array of Procreate’s default brushes you can choose from. On the left side of the library are the categories; scroll through this so you can see previews of brushes on the right of the screen.
You may first want to have a look through Procreate’s different brushes, so you have an idea of the brush you’d like to customize or reference when creating a new one. The brush you choose will depend on what artwork you’d like to create or what your usual style of brush is. This is a key step in learning how to make brushes in Procreate because you want your brush to reflect who you are as an artist.
Once you’ve selected a brush, duplicate it before editing by swiping left on it and selecting Duplicate. Your new brush will pop up on top of the original brush. Note that it has a small brushstroke icon.
Step 2: Edit the Stroke Properties Of Your Brush
Open the Brush Studio by clicking on the brush preview. Look to the left and you’ll see a number of sections, including but not limited to: Stroke Path, Taper, and Shape. To further customize these sections, use the sliders in them to customize the appearance and behavior of the brush stroke.
Step 3: Change Your Shape Source Properties
You may find that you don’t like the single shape that Procreate brushes come in. When creating a brushstroke, this single shape is repeated throughout. Thankfully, this can be modified by heading over to the Shape section.
Go to the Shape Source box underneath the Drawing Pad. The base of your Procreate brush and how it appears when drawn out will be determined here. You can change the default soft circle shape by importing an image, file, or selecting a different source from Procreate’s Source Library.
Once you’ve altered your Shape Source to your liking, go to the Shape Properties section where you’ll be able to turn the Randomized and Azimuth switches on or off.
The Randomized option will allow you to choose where the shape direction will go from the beginning of the stroke, whereas the Azimuth attribute allows the brush form to follow the Apple Pencil’s perpendicular angle.
Select the Improved Filtering when selecting Shape Filtering so that your brush has the best clean appearance.
Step 4: Adjust Your Brush’s Grain Effects
Grain effects can be adjusted in the Grain panel. You do this by customizing your brush’s Grain Source, Grain Behavior, and Grain Filtering. This is one of the most technical steps in how to make a brush on Procreate.
Add texture to your brush by selecting a Grain Source. Do this by importing an image, file, or selecting from the Source Library. If you’d like your brush to appear more solid, add a darker grain source. If not, use a lighter grain source.
Use the movement, scale, zoom, and rotation properties to change your brush’s behavior. Grain Filtering will allow you to add more detail to the grain. Use the None, Classic, and Improved buttons to modify your grain detail as you wish.
Step 5: Set Your Brush Dynamics
This will affect the intensity of the stroke of your brush when drawing or painting. Modify the size and opacity of your brush in the Color Dynamics and Dynamics sections to change the appearance of your brush.
Select from different Brush Rendering options such as Normal, Glazed, and Wet Mix. If you’re a digital painter, Wet Mix will be the optimal setting.
Step 6: Choose Your Pencil Pressure And Tilt
If you’re using Procreate with the Apple Pencil on your iPad, you can change the values on Opacity, Bleed, and Smoothing to affect the way your brush reacts to pressure.
You can adjust the Angle amount so that it affects the way your stroke looks when you tilt your Apple Pencil. This also affects the Opacity, Gradation, Bleed, and Size properties.
Step 7: Select Your General Brush Options
Visit the Properties and About sections to change the preview, size limits, orientation, blend modes, and overall behavior of your brush. The About section is where you can choose a name for your brush. The Brush Properties can be changed by altering your brush preview size in the Preview slider and viewing the source image of your brush in Stamp Preview.
It’s common for iPad artists to customize brushes in Procreate. However, if you don’t have an iPad, take a look at some amazing alternatives with these top Android tablets for drawing.
How To Make A Procreate Brush From Scratch
Feeling extra crafty? Follow these steps to create a new Procreate brush.
Step 1: Set Your Brush Source
Create a new brush in the Brush Library by clicking the plus sign at the top-right.
Step 2: Adjust the Brush’s Settings
Just like customizing a brush in Procreate, you can change the brush settings to your liking. Test it out by drawing within the Advanced Brush settings box.
Step 3: Try Out Your New Brush
Visit the main canvas and draw and/or paint with your newly-created brush. And voila! You’ve learned how to make your own brush in Procreate.
Procreate Default Brushes – Your Options
Procreate has a number of default brush types in their Brush Library. Choose from sketching, inking, drawing, calligraphy, abstract, and water brushes, to name a few. The brush you choose will depend on the work you’ll be creating.
In addition, you don’t have to create or customize a default Procreate brush — you can always purchase one on the Pixelsmith marketplace. Or, share your own new brush with the community. Either way, learning how to create a brush in Procreate is a great skill to have as a digital artist.
How To Make Procreate Brushes – Different Strokes for Every Artist
You don’t have to stick with the default brushes by Procreate. Thankfully, Procreate allows you to express your creative flair by making your own brushes and learning how to create brushes in Procreate isn’t that tricky if you follow the steps above. If you’re interested in learning more about this amazing app, read about the rise of Procreate and how it became the number one app for digital painting.
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Matt is about 80% nerd, 10% writer, 10% animal lover. His love for PC's started at the tender age of 4 and his love for animation and motion graphics fairly soon after. You can normally find him behind a computer screen or playing with his dog Rusty.