What to do if you urgently need to add light, snow, trees, crows to the photo (underline as necessary), but it’s embarrassing to remember trying to learn how to draw? What if you want to quickly colorize your photo with a pastel two-tone retro gradient? And if you need to add a Gothic ornate font to the picture, which is not in the standard set of the program?
The answer to all these questions is one — install what is missing in Photoshop and enjoy. We tell and show how to add gradients, brushes, fonts and actions to the graphic editor.
How to install brushes in Photoshop
Brushes can be conditionally divided into two types: curly (they repeat the shape of something specific — birds, clouds, grass, trees) and texture (copy material, texture — dirt, scratches, dust, strokes of paint, hair).
They are needed to quickly add an object, texture to a photo or picture, or draw something imitating various styles. For example, there are brushes that mimic airbrushes, wet or dry brush strokes.
1. Download the set of brushes you need from the Internet. To find the right one, enter a query into the search engine: “photoshop bird brushes”, “photoshop brushes light”.
Save successful sites as bookmarks in your browser so that you do not have to look for sources again if necessary.
2. As a rule, brushes are packed into an archive. So after installation unzip it.
3. After that, you will see a folder with several files. You are interested in those in .ABR format — this is the brush file.
4. Next, there are two options, which depend on the version of Photoshop.
If you have a version of the program earlier than CC 2020 (this includes all versions of Photoshop CS. Adobe switched to the CC designation in 2013):
- Open Adobe Photoshop, find in the topmost command line menu Edit — Presets — Preset Manager. Choose from the drop down list Preset Type tab Brushes. Click Load. After that, a window opens in which you need to specify the path to the brushes (open the folder and the place where they were downloaded) and select the same file in the .ABR format.
For new versions starting from CC 2020, the algorithm is as follows:
- Open Adobe Photoshop and go to tools Brushes (Brushes, hotkey B) on the left hand toolbar. On the top panel, click on the downward arrow, to the left of which the shape and diameter of the current brush are shown. In the drop-down menu, find the gear on the left, click on it and select Import Brushes. After that, a window opens in which you need to specify the path to your new brushes.
5. New brushes will be added to the list of others. They will be in a folder that, for your convenience, you can rename, move, attach to another.
Folders for organizing brushes in Photoshop have appeared since version CC 2018 — in older versions of the program, all brushes are together.
How to set gradients in Photoshop
Gradients are good for toning photos. They are applied on a separate layer and combined with different blending modes and layer opacity. They can also be used for two-tone toning in the adjustment layer. Gradient Map (Gradient Map) — this adjustment layer replaces light and dark pixels with the corresponding colors of the gradient. For example, if the gradient is pink-purple, then everything that is light will become pink and everything that is dark will become purple (or vice versa).
- Download the gradient and unpack the archive (these steps are described in detail in the previous part about installing brushes).
- You are interested in files in the .GRD format.
- In earlier versions of Photoshop, install the same way as a brush: go to Set Managementbut instead of brushes in the drop-down list, select Gradients.
You can set swatches, styles, patterns, paths, custom shapes, and tools in the same way.
- Starting from CC 2020, to set the gradient, you need to select this tool in the manual editing toolbar on the left (shortcut G). In the upper horizontal line of the program, click on the arrow pointing at the bottom. Find the black gear in the drop-down window, and then Import Gradients.
How to install a font in Photoshop
The peculiarity of installing fonts is that you do not need to go into Photoshop to do this. In addition, the font is immediately added not only to the graphics editor, but also to all other programs that are on the computer and require the use of fonts (even Microsoft Word).
1. Download the desired font and unpack the archive with it (for details on how to do this, see the chapter on installing brushes).
Fonts, like any product, have an author. If you want to use the font for commercial purposes — in advertising, on banners, then it is better to purchase a license for it.
However, there are many free fonts in the public domain. First, it is a standard font package installed in computers. Secondly, the fonts of the Google Fonts service. The only exception is that they cannot be used to make logos. In addition, in any search engine, you can generate a request for “free fonts for commercial use.”
2. Find the .TTF document in the file list. Sometimes there can be several of them — separately for italic, bold, bold italic and regular font type.
3. Select the desired file, right-click and find the command Install or Install for all users.
How to install an action (operation) in Photoshop
An action or operation is a recorded sequence of actions that speeds up work. For example, in order not to sharpen and reduce the picture every time by pressing hot keys, entering the necessary numbers, all these actions can be recorded once and assigned to one button. Just like fonts, brushes and gradients, you can download ready-made actions with different effects.
1. Download the desired action and unpack it (for details on how to do this, see the chapter on installing brushes).
2. Locate the .ATN file and note or copy its location. This is your future action.
3. Open the palette in Photoshop Operations. If it is not added to the workspace, look for it in the top command line in the menu Windowor use the hotkeys Alt + F9.
4. Go to the palette menu (click on the button in the form of four horizontal lines), find the function there Load Action and choose the desired action.
5. After that, the action folder will appear in the palette list Operations.
Actions are capricious. If any of the downloaded operations did not work, the problem is not that you have some kind of Photoshop that is not like that — they may not work correctly due to a dozen reasons. For example, if they were recorded in the editor in Russian, and you have English and vice versa. There may also be problems due to the size of the file on which it was recorded or to which it is currently being applied. Sometimes it crashes due to too few layers when you try to apply an action to the background layer. There are incredibly many such errors, it is difficult to calculate them even for a professional. In this case, it’s easier to either download another action, or find a lesson on how to repeat the same effect.