Using Painting Tools

The power of masks lies in their ability to hide layer content nondestructively and in your ability to edit them ad infinitum. The painting tools, such as the Paint Brush, Dodge, Burn, Gradient, and the Fill command, can all help in the editing process. To edit a Hide All grayscale mask (that is, one filled with black; see earlier in the chapter on how to create masks) with the Paint Brush tool, take the following steps:

1. Select a Brush tool in the Toolbox.

2. Open the Brushes palette (Window ^ Brushes, or click the palette icon in the options bar).

3. Select a brush tip; the size depends on the size of the file.

4. Make sure that all the dynamics are turned off (you can do that from the palette menu by selecting Clear Brush Controls or deselecting them one by one) and start painting.

If you make a mistake, reverse the foreground and background colors (press X) and paint over your previous brush strokes. You can change the tip size temporarily by pressing the square bracket keys. Press [ to decrease, press ] to increase; add the Shift key to soften and harden the brush tip, respectively.

If you use a pen and art pad, you can set the options for the brush to use pen. To do so, take the following steps:

1. Select the Brush tool in the Toolbox.

2. Open the Brushes palette (Window ^ Brushes, or click the palette icon in the options bar).

3. Click Shape Dynamics to display its options.

4. Choose Pen Pressure for Size, Angle, and Roundness jitter from the pop-ups (Figure 8-7).

5. To control the Opacity and Flow jitter, click Other Dynamics and choose Pen Pressure from the pop-ups.

Figure 8-7: Selecting pen pressure for a pen and art pad in the Brushes palette.

To avoid having to redefine custom brushes, save the brush as a tool preset by clicking the Brush tool icon on the options bar and then clicking the Create New Tool Preset icon, just below the button for palette menu, or choose New Tool Preset from the palette menu.

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