Custom Brushes in Photoshop. . . Is it cheating?

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by 7254278, Sep 30, 2008.

  1. 7254278 macrumors 68020

    Apr 11, 2004
    Hey guys,

    I just got started in photoshop. I eventually wanted to be a professiona; designer, but for now I am just kinda learning, having picked up CS3 yesterday. I am mainly just making some mock posters and forum signatures and stuff like that, nothing big. My question to you real designers is. . . Is using custom brushes of images like silhouettes, paint splatters and backgrounds cheating? I know it is limiting, but can you be taken seriously as a designer if you use them? It make my work a lot easier but I don't want to rely on them and would rather learn the hard way if it isn't acceptable to use them on the possible future projects I might get payed for. I am already aware that the brushes are made by other people so it might be illegal in some cases, so that is not my question, I just want to know if it considered "cheap" or "being lazy" to use them.

  2. murdock25 macrumors member

    Aug 5, 2006

    Good artists copy, great artists steal...custom photoshop brushes.
    -Pablo Picasso
  3. LeviG macrumors 65816

    Nov 6, 2006
    Norfolk, UK
    Personally I don't have a problem with using a custom brush, not all of us have the time to spend making custom brushes and so the 'ready made' ones can save us time (time is money after all etc) - just make sure they're good quality etc.

    However they're not always the best approach to doing somethings and there are quicker alternatives out there that you pick up as you go along :)
  4. a cat *miaow* macrumors regular

    Jun 12, 2007
    If you're using them as a tool – which is what they are, then that's all good. If you were to splatter a design with various different brushes to disguise the fact that there isn't any underlaying concept than that's bad.

    As long as you use them in a creative way to reinforce and compliment what you are doing then use them all day long!
  5. adamzx3 macrumors regular


    Sep 8, 2007
    NE Ohio
    If you can save time, use them. As said before time is money, its the end result that matters.

    I frequently use custom brushes to randomly spread up things like in this tutorial
    I also use graphic authority grunge brushes because I cant find any good free ones, and when at a NAPP conference I bought the grunge 2 pack for $30 as a student :) They are fast and efficient.

    Make sure you can can vary the brushes to keep it organic. As far as object brushes, like silhouettes (assuming you talking about the apple ipod type) you should really use vector files from illustrator. Also you'll learn to indesign and illustrator in your design vs rasterizing everything in photoshop. This gives you flexibility and better quality. This Blog , has a bunch of good free vector eps objects and textures.

    Check out the website, it has lots of great tips and feedback in the forums regarding design related stuff.

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