Get started making brushes with the Procreate 5 Brush Studio. Learn more about what each option in the menu does and how it works to create the perfect procreate brush for your art.
You might also like this post on how to import color palettes into Procreate.
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Procreate is a versatile drawing app for the iPad. Procreate comes with a ton of ready-made brushes, but one of the coolest features is that you can create your own brushes to simulate real art mediums.
Want to learn how to draw using Procreate? Learn more about the app interface.
You can make custom brushes from scratch or alter existing brushes to fit your drawing needs.
At the time of writing this, Procreate 5 is the latest update and the revamped Brush Studio to has even more capabilities than before.
Be sure to read about the new updates in Procreate 5X!
Differences in the Brush Studio from Procreate 4 and Procreate 5
The user interface for the Brush Studio is completely new in Procreate 5. Instead of a partial screen, you get an entire window to create brushes. The preview panel is now called the drawing pad and it has added capabilities in addition to being much larger.
The “general” tab in the brush studio is now called properties.
When importing a shape, the button to invert the colors is gone. Instead, use a 2 finger tap to invert the colors.
You might be interested in learning how to make brushes in Procreate.
Procreate 5 Brush Studio: Settings Explained
There are so many settings in Procreate 5 Brush Studio that it can feel overwhelming. However, they’re easy to learn and you can create so many interesting brushes with just a little work. I’m obsessed with creating my own brushes!
You might be interested in learning how to make the very easy monoline brush!
The Brush Studio can be accessed by tapping on the + sign at the top of the menu for brushes or you can edit an existing brush.
I’m explaining the parts in order, but when you’re working on creating a brush, you will want to start with the shape and grain first, then alter the other attributes. I have a full tutorial coming for that.
The drawing pad is much larger now, which allows you to see how your brush works better.
It features a settings menu with a few new options.
Clear Drawing Pad
As the name implies, this allows you to easily clear the drawing pad so that you can see the changes as you make them.
Reset All Brush Settings
This resets the brush settings to the chosen brush. This is helpful if the brush you are making is not turning out and you want to start over.
This allows you to adjust the preview size of the brush. I’ve found this particularly handy in testing pencil brushes, which need to be pretty small.
White is the default testing color, but now you have more choices. Choose one of 8 other colors.
This button is on the main screen and allows you to import free or paid-for brushes. This version of procreate also supports photoshop brushes.
Here are more detailed instructions for importing and exporting brushes.
This option lets you adjust how your stroke will appear. It’s easy to make a stamp brush versus a drawing brush with this option.
Each brush stroke is created by dragging a shape along a path. The spacing determines how smooth or jagged the stroke looks. Decreasing the spacing creates a smoother stroke. You can create a stamp brush by increasing the spacing.
Streamline controls how smooth the line is when writing. Hand letters love setting the streamline high to smooth their handwriting. Use less or no streamline for a realistic hand-drawn look.
Jitter offsets each shape from the stroke path. I like it for creating a rough edge (like a pencil.)
Fall off starts with full opacity and fades away with the stroke, like the brush is running out of paint or ink.
Taper refers to the thickness of your stroke’s beginnings and ends.
These settings are for the Apple pencil.
Pressure Taper Slider
This slider allows you to select how much taper your brush will have. You can choose beginning and end tapers independently of each other if desired.
Link Tip Sizes
This makes it where your beginning and end taper are even. Adjusting one end will adjust the other one.
This option allows you to choose how thick and thin your tapers will be. You can choose 100% for a pointy taper.
Opacity lets your tapers fade.
This setting works with the Apple pencil.
This varies from a blunt end on high to a sharp end on low.
With this option, you can see the animation as Procreate changes the tip.
This setting works with your finger. The options are the same as above, but test them out using your finger instead of the Apple pencil.
Taper Properties: Classic Taper
This option allows you to use the taper feature as it was in previous versions of Procreate.
Shape (Start Here)
The shape is the basis of the whole brush, so although it’s not at the top of the menu, it’s where I always start.
By default, a hard circle is chosen.
Click edit to change the shape source. There you have many import options.
You can use a twisting motion with your fingers to turn the image. To invert the colors on the image, use a 2 finger tap.
Don’t forget to click DONE when you have selected your image.
Import a photo
This allows you to use a photo to create a brush. You can either take an actual photo of something like a watercolor swatch or you can use a saved image that you created in procreate.
Pro Tip: Start with a square image.
Import a file
This works in the same way that the photos work, except you can access your files instead of your photo app.
Procreate comes with an extensive source library to use. You can scroll and browse or you can search for a certain term.
If you’ve created an image in procreate, you can “Copy canvas” in the Actions panel, then paste the image into place.
Use a 2 finger tap to invert the colors. You can also use a twisting motion to rotate the image.
I’ve found that this option works sporadically for me. It could be user error, but sometimes I just can’t get it to work.
These options allow you to change how each shape of the stroke behaves.
This option changes the rotation of each shape along the stroke. (This is a nice option to vary a stamp direction.)
This option sounds a lot like the previous option, but it affects the shape rotation according to the direction of the stroke.
If set in the middle, the shape will stay the same along the stroke. If set to 100%, the shape will follow the stroke direction. If set to -100%, it will go in the opposite direction.
This allows you to add more than 1 shape at once (up to 16.)
This varies the point at which the shape stamps when used with multiples.
This toggle randomizes the shape at the START of the stroke.
Azimuth is made to create a feeling similar to calligraphy. It detects the tilt of the Apple pencil and changes in relation to the direction.
Flip X/ Flip Y
This option flips the shape horizontally or vertically.
Brush Roundness Graph
Drag the green node around the circle to change the orientation of your shape. The blue node is used to alter your shape.
Use the Apple pencil to alter your shape when using pressure.
This option uses the tilt of the Apple pencil alter the shape.
These options adjust how the graphics program handles the edges of the shape.
This option keeps all the details without softening the edges.
Classic works similar to previous versions of Procreate to soften the edges.
This option uses the improved options for softening the edges.
Grain is the texture of the brush. (It can also be used to create pattern brushes.)
Grain Source Editor
Changing the grain source can change the texture of the brush. Be sure to hit DONE when you are happy with your changes.
The grain editor offers the same import settings as the shape. If you use the source library, you can also use the shape options for the grain and vice versa.
This option in the grain source editor allows you to make a seamless pattern. IT has many options to perfect your pattern.
This option allows you to resize your texture. This is helpful if your shape isn’t a perfect square. You can increase the scale to fill the entire tile.
You can rotate the texture in the tile to get a better fit or pattern.
This option adjusts the border overlap between each tile.
Mask hardness controls the blending between each tile.
Hide the edges of the tile by flipping each tile pattern.
Pyramid blending is an advanced blending technique, best used for complex, organic patterns.
These settings change how your grain behaves. You have two options to choose from: Moving or Texturized.
Moving changes the way your grain moves with the stroke. It can vary from showing the texture clearly to blurring it as the stroke moves.
A low setting (stamp) gives you a blurred effect of the texture. A high setting (rolling) shows more details of the texture.
Scale changes the size of the texture inside the shape.
This changes the texture size in relation to your brush size. Cropped will maintain the same size, even when you change your brush size. Follow size will adjust the texture size in relation to your brush.
Rotation changes the direction of the texture depending on your brush stroke direction.
Depth controls how strong the texture shows through the brush.
This option sets a minimum threshold for depth contrast.
Depth jitter randomly changes the depth setting from the shape to the texture.
This setting changes where the brush stroke is first laid. (This is an option that is important for pattern-making brushes.)
Blend mode controls how the color reacts to the colors beneath it. These settings are similar to blend modes in photoshop.
Control how bright or dark the texture is with this setting.
Contrast controls the difference between light and dark in the texture.
These settings are the same as in the shape section. The filtering applies to how soft the edges become.
The texture behind the brush doesn’t move in this option.
These options are similar to the movement options, but only include scale, depth, blend mode, brightness and contrast, plus the grain filtering options.
Rendering adjusts how the brush reacts to the canvas on the screen.
Change how the brush reacts to previous strokes and the canvas. These attributes work well with paint-type brushes. The options range from diluted paint to thick paint.
This is Procreate’s standard blending. It is similar to paint that is diluted.
This option is similar to Photoshop.
The heavy glaze is a stronger blending mode.
Use this setting with the Wet Mix options for more intense effects.
This is similar to painting with thick paint. Use this with wet brushes. Make it more intense with the Wet Mix options.
These blending options affect how the paint interacts with other colors, how diluted it is, and how the edges look.
Change how the paint flows on the paper to get a heavier or lighter look.
Wet edges give you the look of paint bleeding into the paper and soften the edges.
This darkens the edges of the paint stroke where it overlaps other colors.
Burnt Edges Mode
Changing this option allows you to change the blend mode for the burnt edges effect.
Adjust the blend mode for the entire paint stroke (not just the edges.)
Turning this option on will blend the lightness values of the brushstroke (vs the color values in the above options.)
These options change the way the paint works with the canvas and other colors. Play with these options for wet brushes like paints.
Dilution refers to how much water is mixed in with the color. Use a higher setting for more diluted paint.
This option applies more paint at the beginning of a paint stroke and lessens until you lift your brush. Think of it like a paintbrush loaded with paint and running out of paint.
This refers to how much paint sticks to the canvas.
The pull is great for mixing colors previously painted on the canvas.
This setting changes the thickness and contrast of the brush texture.
Wetness jitter randomly changes the amount of water in a brushstroke.
These settings work with the Apple pencil to change the color of a brushstroke.
See my full tutorial for using color dynamics to make color-changing brushes!
Stamp Color Jitter
These settings can be seen best when the stroke spacing is set to high. Change these settings to alter color attributes for each specific color stamp in a stroke.
Change the color in the drawing pad from white to see these effects.
Hue randomly changes the color of the stamp. When set to low, the color variation will stick to a few colors (like yellow, yellow-green, and green).
When set to high, it will go through all the colors.
This setting randomly changes the saturation of the color. When set to low the effects are more subtle. A high setting will have a higher range and change the color from white to bright blue for instance.
This setting randomly changes the lightness for each stamp.
Darkness randomly changes the darkness of each stamp.
A 2nd color can be chosen in the color panel. This will randomly change the stamp color from the first color to the 2nd color.
Stroke Color Jitter
These settings change each new stroke. It has the same settings as the stamp color jitter. They vary from stroke to stroke instead of affecting each stamp.
These settings change with the pressure of the Apple pencil.
This option hasn’t been seen in the other sections. Brightness changes with the pressure of the Apple pencil.
These options change depending on how the Apple pencil is tilted.
These settings allow you to control how much your brush changes depending on how fast you draw or write. Plus, it adds randomness with jitter.
(These settings do not depend on an Apple pencil, so they can be great for people drawing with their fingers.)
Change your brush depending on how fast you write.
Change the size of your brush depending on the speed. Slow = thin, fast = thick.
Change how opaque or transparent your brush is depending on your speed. Slow = transparent, fast = opaque.
This setting changes how your shape appears in each stroke. (Not affected by speed.)
The size is randomly altered with this option.
Opacity in the stroke is randomly altered with this option.
These settings change how the Apple pencil interacts with the canvas.
Change the way the Apple pencil responds to pressure.
Change the brush tip size when using pressure. (This is a great setting for brush calligraphy.)
Change the opacity of the brush when using pressure. When set to max, the transparency will vary. When set to none, it stays opaque.
Pro Tip: This is set to the max by default, which is annoying. If you’re having trouble with your brushes being transparent at the beginning, this is where you change that setting.
Change how much paint gets used when using pressure.
Change how much the paint bleeds into the canvas when using pressure.
This setting changes how the brush reacts during transitions from low to high pressure. When set to high, it smooths the transition for a cleaner look.
This changes how fast the brush reacts to changes in pressure variation.
Change how the Apple pencil responds to being tilted.
The tilt graph ranges between 0 and 90º, but works best between 30º and 90º. Below 15º, the pencil doesn’t touch the screen.
The graph can be changed by pulling the blue node.
This setting changes the opacity when a tilted pencil is used.
Gradation changes how soft the brush gets when used at a tilt.
This setting changes how much the paint bleeds into the canvas when used at a tilt.
Size allows you to change the brushstroke thickness.
Turn this on to prevent the size of the texture from changing with the tilt settings.
Properties used to be called General. These are overall settings for the brush.
Use these settings to change how the brushes show up in the brush library and react to smudging.
Use Stamp Preview
Use this setting for stamp brushes to show the shape accurately. Strokes are shown by default.
Orient to Screen
Turn this on if it the brush will react to the screen orientation. For instance, a stamp brush may need this turned on so that it faces the right way.
Change the size of the brush in the brush library. This is helpful for seeing giant brushes.
Change how much this brush reacts when using smudge.
These general settings allow you to change the basic sizes and opacity of the brush when drawing.
Learn more about resizing brushes here.
This changes how large your brush can get.
Pro tip: If you want a larger limit, raise the spacing in the stroke properties.
This changes how small your brush can get.
Maximum / Minimum Opacity
This changes the limits for opacity for your brush.
About this Brush
This is the place in the Procreate 5 Brush Studio where you name your brush and add your maker info.
Name Your Brush
At the top you have the option to change your brush name from “Untitled Brush.” This makes finding a specific brush much easier.
This section allows you to add a profile photo and your name. It also creates a date stamp.
This allows you to sign your name to your brush.
Create New Reset Point
This allows you to make a reset point. You can keep messing with your brush settings, but you have an option to go back to the reset point.
This resets the brush to your reset point. For Procreate brushes that came with the app, it restores the settings to their original settings.
You Might Also Like:
- Places to Get Procreate Brushes
- How to Transfer Procreate Brushes to a New iPad
- How to Make a Calendar in Illustrator
- Removing White Lines from Patterns in Illustrator
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