Recreating the Alphabet Photoshop Brushes in 4 Easy Steps

by . September 20th, 2012

Hello creatives! For the past few months we have given you tutorials about creating designs on various print products. This time, we will widen our topic by bringing you tuts of simple design projects that might be helpful in your own creative process. And today we start the creative awesomeness by giving you a tutorial on how we come up with a certain freebie we posted few months back.

Today’s creative session will teach you how to create a set of stunning Alphabet Photoshop Brushes. By following the series of steps below and applying your own creative ideas, we’re sure that you can make your own designs and discover something in you that can be used in your next design projects.


Alphabet Photoshop Brushes Tutorial by YouTheDesigner


This tutorial will just show you how we come up with the set of brush. We don’t encourage you to duplicate the work but instead apply your own creative touch as we go on along with the series of steps. So enough with the chatter and lets get ourselves ready for a creative outburst!



STEP 1 | Preparing the Document and the Reference


Open Adobe Photoshop and set the document with the details below.


On the blank canvas, type letter “A” at the center. Use the Type tool with the following properties:

You’ll achieve this.


Select the text layer on the Layers Palette. Right click > Blending Options > Color Overlay. Use white as the fill color.


Blending Options > Stroke. Set the size to 3 and choose black as the fill color.


You now have a black outlined “A” text. This layer serve as the reference for the next step.




STEP 2 | Drawing the Letters

Create a new layer right above the text layer.


Select the Brush tool. Set the brush size to 5 and black as the fill color. On the new layer you just created, start drawing some curve lines and doodles following the pattern set by the text layer. This is the most interesting part so experiment on using different lines and strokes.

The dimensions of the strokes must not be limited within the outline of the text layer. Go beyond it but not too much. To complete this stage, I used an Intuos drawing tablet (an amazing life saver). But if you are confident enough with your drawing skills, you can actually do this by just using your mouse. Here’s my letter “A”:



Note: You can also reduce or increase the brush size to achieve your desired design for the letter.


STEP 3 | Adding Effects

Once you finished the swirls or drawing your own design, it is now ready to be transformed it into a Photoshop brush. But before we do that we need to apply some certain effects on the letter.

Hide all the layers except the one containing the drawn design.



I will add some glow and an outline of the letter with a bigger stroke using the blending options. But observe that the spaces within the strokes are empty so the glow and stroke will also apply inside these spaces. So to avoid this, we have to fill in those empty spaces. Create a new layer just below the design. (I named the layer as “base”) Using the paint bucket tool, color the layer with white.


Merge the two layers by selecting the “A” layer then press Ctrl + E on your keyboard. Using the magic eraser tool, erase the white areas OUTSIDE the letter design on the merged layer.


The spaces within the swirls are not anymore empty so we can proceed with adding the outline and some glow effect. For adding the glow: Select the layer > Right click > Blending options > Click Outer Glow. Set the properties as indicated below:


For adding the outline: Select the layer > Right click > Blending options > Click Stroke. Set the properties as indicated below:

Click OK and you’ll achieve the following effect on your letter. (Show your Background layer to see the result clearly.) The outer glow gives the design the floating effect while the stroke makes it more solid and highlighted.



STEP 4 | Saving the Brush


Hide all the layers except the drawn design. In the menu, click Edit then select Define Brush Preset. A dialog box will pop-up, rename the brush then hit OK.



The new brush preset will now be saved to your brushes collection. To view and try it, click the brush tool and select the newly added brush in the collection.



Test the brush.



You finally created your own alphabet brush. Just follow steps 1 through 4 for the other letters. Don’t forget to group the layers for each completed letter to properly organize and manage the whole process.


After finishing all the letters, you can now export the brushes and save it as an ABR file. This will allow you to compile the collection and share them. Click on the brush tool. Open the brush preset picker then click the small arrow at the top right corner of the menu. Select Preset Manager.



The Preset manager dialog box will open. Select all the alphabet brushes by clicking each brush and pressing Ctrl simultaneously.  Click Save Set. Then hit Done when finished.



So that’s it guys! Creating your own set of alphabet brushes is as easy as that. Hope this simple tutorial at some point helped you not just in creating a brush set but in giving you some creative ideas and techniques you can use in your next project. :)



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