How to Make Brushes Fade in Adobe Photoshop

Written by carolyn rumsey
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How to Make Brushes Fade in Adobe Photoshop
You can make your Photoshop brushes look more realistic by fading them out. (painting brush image by peter Hires Images from

When you are trying to create a realistic-looking brush stroke in Photoshop, it can be frustrating to work with the simplistic presets. But there's a way to change these settings so your brush will appear to fade out at the end of a stroke, much like a real paint brush would. If you want a faded stroke so you can layer other elements on top of it, there are settings that fade an entire stroke.

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  1. 1

    Click on "Windows," then "Brushes" to open the "Brushes" palette.

  2. 2

    Select a basic brush, such as a 15-pixel round brushstroke.

  3. 3

    Click on "Shape Dynamics" in the menu on the left side of the "Brushes" window.

  4. 4

    Set all items within the "Shape Dynamics" window to "0," and the controls to "Off."

  5. 5

    Click on "Size Jitter," and choose the option "Fade" in the drop-down menu.

  6. 6

    Type "10" in the box beside the "Size Jitter" setting to produce a fade in 10 steps/pixels.

  1. 1

    Set every setting in the "Shape Dynamics" menu to "0."

  2. 2

    Open the "Other Dynamics" menu on the left side of the "Brushes" window.

  3. 3

    Change the control on the "Opacity Jitter" slide to "Fade."

  4. 4

    Type "10" in the box next to the "Opacity Jitter" slide to have the stroke fade out in 10 pixels.

Tips and warnings

  • You can combine settings to produce a brush that has an overall lower opacity with a completely faded end.
  • If you are printing the image, remember that it can be very difficult, if not impossible, to see opacities below 30 per cent.

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