How to Install Brushes in Photoshop

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Photoshop brushes are on my list of favorite uses for Photoshop, after actions of course. :)

Photoshop brushes (.abr) are incredibly useful. They can help you add lighting to an image, work with textures and overlays, and even can be used for photo retouching.

In this tutorial I am going to give you a quick explanation for how to install brushes in Photoshop, and some help with using Photoshop brushes.

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Here are the two methods we found easiest for installing Photoshop brushes. For this tutorial we are using the Analog Film brushes from FilmStock!

Method One

This is the quickest and easiest method for installing Photoshop brushes, but may not always work perfectly, especially on a PC. Try it, and if it doesn’t work, check out method two.

Step One

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Open your downloaded folder or file and navigate to the brushes file. It will end in the .abr extension.

Step Two

Double click the .abr brush file and then open Photoshop.

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Once opening Photoshop, navigate to the brush panel. It can be found on the left side by clicking the brush icon.

Then click the drop down where you see the number, this indicates brush size.

Scroll down and you will see the brushes installed.

Method Two

This method takes maybe 30 seconds longer. The good news is, it has always worked for me on both Mac and PC.

Step One

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Open Photoshop and navigate to the brush icon in the tools panel on the left side.

Step Two

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Next click the Photoshop Brushes Panel Drop Down, and it will look similar to the screenshot below.

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Step Three

install brushes photoshop

Click the settings icon in the top right of the Photoshop Brush Panel and go down to where it says “Import Brushes”. Once you click this, your folders will open where you can find brush files.

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

It will open a dialogue box for you, and from there you navigate to your Photoshop brushes, it will be a .abr file.

Then open it and they will install into Photoshop. Showing up at the bottom of the brush panel, like the image below.

How to Install Photoshop Brushes

Recommend Brushes & Actions

Check out these amazing Photoshop Actions, Brushes, and texture sets! For vintage effects, beautiful light leaks, and more view the products below.

RetroLab Vintage Film Photoshop Actions Bundle

Vintage Photo Creator Smart Texture Overlays

Summer Tone Photoshop Actions Bundle

The FilterGrade Light Leaks Bundle for Photoshop

faded photoshop actions

Renegade Heavy Vintage Photoshop Actions

Spark Effex Pro Photo Overlays Pack

Sean Dalton Bokeh Overlays Bundle

Cover Matt Larson Lens Flares Pack - FilterGrade

View all Photoshop Actions →

How to Use Photoshop Brushes

Now using Photoshop brushes is the fun part. To do so simply open the Brush Panel, shown in the image above, and click on a brush.

Adjust its size and color all in the Brush Panel. Then change its color by editing the swatches below.

How to Use Photoshop Brushes

Now click in your document to use the brush.

How to Use Photoshop Brushes

That is a basic guide to installing and using Photoshop brushes.

You could do a lot with the Photoshop Brush Preset Manager, but that is for a later tutorial.

Consider this a getting started tutorial.


Also check out our tutorial teaching you How to Install Photoshop Actions. Put these tutorials into practice by picking something up from the FilterGrade Shop.

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