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40+ Photoshop Brushes For Artists: Best Drawing & Painting Brush Packs

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Adobe Photoshop is by far the most popular software for painting. It comes with many pre-packaged brushes and there’s plenty of tutorials online to help anyone learn.

But even with a mountain of free tutorials and guidance on painting in Photoshop, you may still feel a bit off. More practice helps but sometimes you might want to try some new brushes too.

Digital artists across the world release their brush sets online. Some are free, some cost a small fee, but there’s a tremendous amount of PS brushes online tailor-made for artists.

And I’ll curate all the best options right here for you to peruse. Doesn’t matter if you’re looking to create pencil marks in your digital work, or paint some extra textures into your concept pieces—there is a brush set in here for every purpose under the sun.

AaronGriffinArt Brushes

AaronGriffinArt Brushpack

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To start off here’s a really unique pack from AaronGriffinArt devoted to Photoshop work.

These brushes still attract a lot of attention with comments as recent as this week, even though the pack was published years ago. Talk about quality.

All of these brushes are used in Aaron’s work so you can get a taste of how they’d look just by skimming his art.

 

Sakimichan Pack

Sakimichan brush pack

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Here’s one more pack you might like that’s also a bit dated, yet still super relevant today.

The brushes come from Sakimichan on DeviantArt and they’re super easy to work with. There’s a total of 54 brushes here offering a variety of scatters, splatters, and general paint brushes.

And this pack was designed with compatibility in mind so it should work in all versions of Photoshop from CS3 up.

 

Real Pencil Brushes

Realistic pencil brushes

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Ah, pencil brushes. These bring the feeling of traditional drawing right into your digital art.

If you want a simple pack to get started with pencil marks check out this one from Soenanda. Totally free and pretty small, but it comes with a handful of brushes mimicking different softness levels and even one for mechanical pencil lead.

All-in-all a nice starter pack for getting more traditional marks in your art.

 

PS Pencil Brush

Photoshop pencil brushpack

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So this is another pencil set targeting more advanced or intermediate artists. You can still do the same work from the above set, however I prefer this one just for the more realistic textures.

It comes with a preview pack and there’s even instructions on how to install brushes right in the description.

If you’ve never used custom brushes before these instructions will help a lot. And if you’re more familiar with traditional work you’ll be delighted to try these out.

 

7 Charcoal Brushes

Charcoal Pack

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There’s a big difference between graphite and charcoal pencils. They leave very different markings, feel totally different, and have varying grades to their materials.

Not too many artists get into charcoal unless they do a lot of traditional work. With that said, charcoal can look awesome on digital work!

And this brush pack gives you everything to get started with charcoal, without buying any. This way you can attempt some digital work and see how it feels to paint with the real-world style of vine charcoal.

 

Realistic Charcoal Brush

Charcoal pencil brushes

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One more charcoal brush pack for good measure, this one from DeviantArt user WojtekFus.

Both packs are totally free and they’re both designed for all modern versions of Photoshop. So I don’t think anyone should have trouble getting these installed.

Biggest challenge will be learning to replicate that realistic feeling in your digital work to create a believable style as if you’re working in a traditional medium.

 

Sylar113 Pack

Sylar133 brushpack

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Now this pack is definitely in my favorites list because it comes with so much variety for digital artwork.

Creator Sylar113 first released this pack a few years ago and it’s still super relevant today. You’ll find over 70 brushes all with different presets and varying styles.

Some are even combined from other free packs to create one “mega compilation” of digital brushes for artists. Certainly a nice starter pack or something to experiment with in your work.

 

Pearlpencil Winter 2012

Pearlpencil Brushes

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From chalky lines to dual pencil markings, this pack has a little bit of everything.

Its strength comes from the generic style of each brush meaning you can format the final output any way you want. There is some incredibly cool stuff you can do by altering settings in the PS brushes panel.

That’s what I like most about this set: the ability to customize the final output to look great and suit your needs.

 

Mateu7’s Ink Brushes

Mateu7 Brushes

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How could I write about Photoshop brushes and not mention ink?

In this free set you’ll find 10 custom inking brushes made by Mateu7 on DeviantArt. These designs actually vary a lot from very loose and blotty to more straight-lined or even scattered marks.

Ink can take a lot of forms and that’s why the variety in this pack can be so useful. Especially for artists who prefer working in ink.

 

Concept Art Brush Pack

ConceptArt Brushes

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You knew there would be at least one concept art pack in this list. And let me say this one’s a doozy.

DA user SoldatNordsken released this pack as a freebie on his website Evenant.com.

It does require an email submission to get the pack, but it’s totally free and you can always unsubscribe from the emails right afterwards.

Inside the pack is a tremendous library of brushes for foliage, snow, atmospheric effects, and so much more.

These are professional-quality brushes that can really help you create professional level concept art. Absolutely worth checking out if you’re interested.

 

Environment Brushes

Environment Brush Pack

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For another related pack you might check out this environment set from DA user TheEchoDragon.

Again these can be used strictly for concept art, but could also be used for background painting or layout design.

Ultimately the brushes you have can never replace a poor skillset. You should always strive to improve your digital work through practice.

Now with that said, if you want to do a lot of environment stuff this pack is totally worth a try.

 

The Loish Brushset

Loish Brushes

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By now almost every digital artist should know of Loish. She’s a wildly famous artist from the Netherlands with a massive online following(for good reason!)

A few years back she released this custom brush set with all of the brushes that she uses for her work. Now it’s practically a staple for anyone who wants to mimic her style.

Loish does some really nice stuff and if you’re not familiar with her work definitely have a look at her Instagram and see what you think.

 

TsaoShin Brushes

TsaoShin Brushes

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While this pack is fairly small, it’s just big enough to tackle some digital painting projects and get them done super clean.

TsaoShin released this 4-pack of brushes as “basic brushes” all used in their artwork. It’s designed entirely for Photoshop and should support all major versions from CS5 up.

You may be looking for something with a bit more variety, but if you don’t want to clutter your brush palette these 4 make a very nice addition. Oh and they’re totally free.

 

Colored Pencil Brush Set

Colored Pencil Brushes

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Custom brushes in the style of colored pencils. Seems like a solid idea yet I had a pretty difficult time finding sets like this.

Thankfully I stumbled onto a free pack courtesy of Brusheezy and creator Jeremiah Shaw. You can download these brushes and use them however you like, assuming attribution for any commercial work.

Brusheezy includes details on every license for their brush packs so if you’re ever unsure if something is free just look for the “license details” link on the page.

 

Art Pack 1

ArtPack 1

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I’m a huge fan of Gumroad for anything art related. Tutorials, video demos, brushes, plugins, everything.

And this pack from Sparth does not disappoint with 30 custom brushes tailor-made for all forms of digital painting. I find that these work best with realist paintings such as concept art pieces or photobashed paintings.

Only downside here is the price tag. It does seem a little steep for the amount you get, although the quality is pretty high so if you like these styles it’s worth the price.

 

Basic Digital Paint Set

Basic Set

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Not all content on Gumroad comes with a price tag. This brush set is one such example with a default of $0 to download(although you can tip).

Creator ramstudioscomics released this brush set online for free as it was their very first set when starting to paint digitally. That makes it an excellent choice for newbies who are hesitant to work with Photoshop defaults.

There’s a little bit of everything here from chalking effects to comic brushes, some hair & fur textures, blending brushes, anything you could possibly want.

 

Photoshop Essentials

PS Essentials

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Here’s one more really nice freebie set designed exclusively for modern Photoshop artists.

This comes with 22 brush presets tailored for Photoshop CS6 & CC. Inside you’ll find a massive collection of brushes, far too many to list here, but you can see a full list on the Gumroad page.

Most of these brushes attempt to copy textures such as pencils, watercolors, oils, pastels, and even some brushes for storyboarding and web comics.

 

Ink & Tones

Ink Tone Brushes

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Digital ink tones are a classic texture for comics. If you’re trying to hit a similar look in your artwork this is a pack worth nabbing.

This comes with a paltry $1 price tag so it’s worth the expense if you do a lot of comic work. Inside you’ll find over 40 brushes with 31 of them being screentone brushes.

The others include inkers and tech pens for doing your own comics or manga work. Certainly a powerful pack for artists who want to create their own mangas from scratch.

 

The Big 50 Pack

Big 50 Brushes

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A massive set of 50 brushes all designed for Photoshop CC.

This is perhaps one of the largest and most technical brush packs in this list with a ton of textures mixed in. Rocks, tree bark, grass, clouds, there’s a little of everything that you’d expect to find in a detailed brush pack.

There’s also a handful of blending and smudging brushes that you can use to restyle your artwork and get it looking tip-top.

 

Ahmed Aldoori PS Brushes

Aldoori Brushes

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Artist Ahmed Aldoori published these free brushes on Gumroad as a companion to his YouTube channel.

This is an artist with so many incredible tutorials and painting videos online, all with a very specific style that works well in digital form.

If you’re familiar with Aldoori’s work I highly recommend this brush pack. Or even if you aren’t familiar and just wanna try this out, why not? After all it’s free.

 

Natural Drawing and Painting Media

Natural Media Brushes

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Moving back into more traditional media we’ve got this free brush pack designed by Christine Garner.

For this one you can get a little bit of every medium: pencils, markers, oils, pastels, gouache, and a few others.

Plus this ABR file was designed for Photoshop CS3 so it should work in every newer version as well.

 

Shiyoon’s Ink Brush Set

Shiyoons Ink Brushes

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As far as ink brushes go, I think this pack might take the cake.

Disney character designer Shiyoon Kim released these brushes on their Gumroad page as an example of what’s possible given the right pack. This does come at a steeper price point of $10 but you get a handful of custom ink brushes that are perfect for animation artists.

Actually, pretty much any digital artist could find use in these brushes. Yet at that price point I recommend it specifically for anyone who wants to copy Shiyoon’s style.

 

Nwain Photoshop Brushes

Nwain PS Brushes

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You may(or may not) know of the webcomic Nwain. This is an online webcomic designed with animation effects and some pretty nice compositions.

Well this free brush pack comes from the creator Terrana Cliff who wanted to release these for free to the art community.

They’re all designed for Photoshop and this is the complete set used for each comic in the Nwain series. A great freebie for artists and super valuable to anyone who wants to make their own webcomic.

 

1000+ Manga Brush Megapack

Manga Brush Megapack

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I could go on & on about this brush pack, but I think the images speak for themselves.

Set at a price of $25 this pack includes over one thousand brushes made exclusively for Adobe Photoshop. Talk about some attention to detail!

And this pack is specifically designed as manga & anime brushes so they’re great for artists who often work in that art style.

 

Cale Atkinson’s Preset Brushes #1

CaleAtkinson Brushes

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Cale Atkinson is an artist & illustrator with a very unique style. It’s got to be one of my favorite styles out there and his work really brings on a life of its own.

Well if you’ve ever wanted to see how he does it, now you can with this free pack of tool preset brushes.

These work a little differently than regular brushes and you should learn about tool presets if you’re not familiar. But these are incredibly powerful for digital artwork and the pack is 100% free for life.

 

Drew Green’s Cartooning Brushes

Drew Green cartooning

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Interested in making your own webcomics, storyboards, or goofy cartoons?

Well if you wanna draw funny stuff then you’ll want brushes to match that style.

Enter Drew Green and his amazing cartoon brush set. This does come with a price of $6 but you get some very unique brushes that feel like a mixture of traditional mediums and digital painting brushes.

Inside is a pack of 27 original brushes along with 10 bonus brushes, all designed to work in Photoshop CS4 or higher. Check it out and see what you think.

 

Photoshop Pencils

PS Brushes Pack

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You can find a lot of handy assets on Cubebrush. It’s a curated art marketplace where artists can release their assets online for a set price.

This means there’s a much larger variety to pick from, but also more volatility in pricing. I searched a while to find the best brushes on here and one of my favorites is this $2 pencil brush set.

It’s designed with over 80 brushes all made for Photoshop CC.

Absolutely perfect for more basic pencil work, or just for practicing your digital animation art like storyboarding, character designs, or rough sketches.

 

RM Perfectionist Brushes

RM Perfectionist

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Here’s a set that comes at a much higher price tag, but it’s also designed for both designers and artists who use Photoshop.

Inside is a set of ABR and TPL files with brushes for almost everything: watercolors, markers, oils, air brushes, you name it.

These have all been expertly fine-tuned to run with digital tablets and should work especially well on Wacoms. But if you can’t justify the price tag no worries: there are plenty of free alternatives all throughout this post.

 

Essential CS5 Brushes

EssentialCS5

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While the title of this set may seem like it’s for older users, the brushes hold up remarkably well in newer versions of Photoshop.

After all: digital painting isn’t changing much regardless of what software you choose.

Inside this bundle you’ll get more than 100 brushes all organized into categories like smudge, sketch, paint, ink, and a bunch more.

Well worth checking out and seeing if you could use these in any future work.

 

Marker Brushes

Marker Brushes

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When it comes to art markers I’ve always been a fan of Copics. They offer the strongest color quality and the longest shelf life, plus they just “feel” like art markers.

That’s exactly what you’ll find in this pack of Photoshop brushes built around marker designs.

They’re meant to emulate markers on paper as much as possible, all while working digitally. These brushes support Photoshop CS5 and higher and come with a hefty number in one pack.

Plus they come with only a $2 price so it’s not too shabby if you’re looking for realistic art marker brushes.

 

Ballpoint Pen Brushes

Ballpoint Brushes

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Here’s another very specific drawing instrument turned digital.

I know many artists love to work in ballpoint pens. They give a sense of solidity and a level of darkness that you just can’t find in other drawing mediums.

If you want to bring that feeling into your digital work then check out this pack of ballpoint pen brushes all made for Photoshop users.

This comes from David Schmelling, the same artist who created the marker brushes above. So the price point and the quality is similar here.

 

Sketching For Photoshop

Sketching brushes

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Sketching is a very personal exercise and it’s easy to get finicky with line quality. That means you’ll really want some great brushes if you do a lot of sketching digitally.

I’m a fan of the many free packs listed earlier, but if you want to go premium check out this sketch-focused brush pack.

It comes from MaCaLabs and it’s one of the few brushes that comes with a tool presets file. This means you can upload brushes and change the default pressure settings to get them working exactly as the artist intended.

 

Fur, Hair & Grass Brushes

Fur hair grass

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There’s good reason to paint custom textures yourself. Stuff like fur and hair can come out better if you work at it section by section.

That said, many artists would prefer custom texture brushes to save time and energy.

That’s where this awesome brush pack comes in to save the day.

Inside you’ll find 52 brushes all made to lay out believable grass, fluffy fur, and realistic hair. Not to mention every brush comes in high definition so they can be resized up to 5000px and still look incredible.

 

180+ Handdrawn Watercolors

Handdrawn Watercolors

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Finding high-quality watercolor brushes can be a challenge. Usually they’re lumped together with other brushes in the “big packs” listed earlier.

However if you just want an exclusive set of watercolor brushes look no further than this pack by Favete Art.

It comes with over 180 brushes all designed by hand, all made to clone the effects of watercolors on the digital screen. By far one of the best sets in this list if you’re a big fan of watercolor textures.

 

RM Watercolor 2018

RM Watercolor

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I figure it’s worth throwing in one more awesome watercolor pack into the list, just in case you want some variety.

Inside this pro watercolor pack you’ll find both the ABR file with the brushes and the TPL file for tool presets. This set does come at a slightly higher price than the one above, however I also see this pack updated year-over-year with new brushes and new presets.

Again, worth checking out if you’re into the watercolor texture. Might not be for everyone but certainly a very nice pack of brushes for artists.

 

RM Natural Oil 2018

NaturalOil

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Moving into oil brushes you might also like this set from the same creator Roman Melentyev.

Again this is part of his “pro brushes” set and it gets updated with new settings each year. That means you’ll also likely need the newest version of Photoshop if you upgrade, however many brush packs are backwards compatible so you can always ask the creator for more info.

For this pack you’ll find a bunch of custom oil brush styles. Bristles, soft brushes, dry brushes, some plain styles and many textures styles too.

Many of these can even work for concept art paintings if you’re going for a more realist style.

 

Basic Oil Brushes

Basic Oil Brushes

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Most artists prefer to go with brushes that are cheaper(or free) whenever possible.

So if you want an oil brush pack that’s a little cheaper have a look at this set by Grzegorz Rutkowski.

It comes at only $5 and it has quite a few brushes to pick from. Not to mention the style is flawless for painting just like oil in your digital work.

Even some of the free oil brushes listed earlier cannot hit this level of detail. So I think this is totally worth the price if you want to create oil-styled artwork in Photoshop.

 

4 Feature Sets + Goodies

brushes and videos

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Within this 4-pack of brushes you’ll actually get a handful of different brushes all categorized together, and a few extras to boot.

From my count there’s over 40 different brushes along with free video guides on how to paint with them. No other brush pack has goodies like this!

You’ll also find completed works in PSD format along with JPEGs of the final designs. This way you can see exactly what these brushes can do, how the artist paints them using layers, and even follow along to create the same artwork yourself.

This does come at a larger price of $30 but for everything you get, I’d say that’s still quite a steal.

 

Starter Pack For Photoshop

starter brushes photoshop

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Creator and founder of Cubebrush Marc Brunet released his own Photoshop brush sets onto the marketplace and they’re pretty darn nice.

This is a cheaper pack made specifically for newcomers just getting into digital painting, or artists switching from another program into Photoshop.

Inside you’ll find 14 brushes that cover the gamut from painting to drawing and everything inbetween. So for the $3 price it’s actually got a lot to offer.

However if you are brand new to Photoshop I suggest starting with free brushes first. Get used to the brushes panel and how to use the software, then worry about paying for premium brush packs.

 

Advanced Painter’s PS Brushes

AdvancedPSBrushes

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On the flip side we have this advanced brush set also designed by Marc.

This one comes with 25 different brushes and they’re designed with far more intricate details. If you already feel comfortable painting your own characters or environments from scratch, then you’ll feel comfortable working with this pack.

There’s something in here for every subject matter from skin brushes to fabrics and general dust/scatter brushes.

But don’t feel like you need a pro level of artistic experience before picking this up. Anyone can work with these brushes and start painting fast; but you’ll need a background in digital painting & general artistic skills to really craft pro-level work.

 

Character Design Brushes

Character brushes

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Photoshop is the best software to make your own character art.

Yes you can always use the default brushes and work with what you’ve got. But why not start with a pack tailored to the character design process?

I cannot think of a better resource than this massive 315+ brush pack full of many different styles. There’s brushes for inking, storyboarding, manga drawing, sketching, oils, pastels, everything.

The full list of brushes can be found on the product page so check that out and see if you could use these in your work.

I know this is a big list so it can feel overwhelming. But you can always start by skimming the list to check out any brushes that catch your eye.

Try to avoid downloading a ton at once since you’ll likely waste time jumping between everything. It’s better to test one brush set at a time until you find something you really like.