Let’s create materials! Decoration brush ③ Ribbons



[1] Features of the ribbon brush

A ribbon brush is a brush which has the [Ribbon] settings turned on for its [Stroke].

The ribbon brush has the following features.

· The brush will connect the top and bottom of the pattern and draw it as a continuous ribbon.

· The pattern will be deformed along the stroke when drawing.

For example, if a tile-like motif is used as a ribbon brush, the shape will be deformed along the curves of the stroke.

<Pattern brush (when turning off “ribbon”)>

Here, the pattern was snapped to the ruler and drawn as a straight line. This is useful when aligning a pattern in a straight line.

However, as shown in the figure below, the following will happen when it is used on a curved stroke.

<Pattern brush (when turning on “ribbon”)>

If the settings are changed to “ribbon”, the pattern will fit the arch shape, as it will be deformed along the curve of the stroke.

[2] Tips for creating ribbon brushes

If the pattern performs like a line and the image can be deformed along a curve without looking unnatural, it can be used as a ribbon brush.

However, rigid items that usually don’t deform along curves are often not suitable to be used with the ribbon brush settings.

As with the case of the pearls below, the pattern is more suitable for the stamp brush and not so much for the ribbon brush.

Metal chains don’t deform when being bent, but as shown below, at a small size, the deformation is not very noticeable.

Even when using objects that don’t normally bend, if the feature isn’t used in extreme ways, the ribbon may create smoother results than patterns. Therefore, it is important to adjust the tool according to its application.

・Pattern brushes do not connect cleanly if they are slightly shifted

・When set go “ribbon” the pattern will connect.

[3] Creating a basic ribbon brush

■ 1. Create an image

In the case of a ribbon brush material, unlike other styles, if the pattern is not a brush material that connects well at the top and bottom, the joints will be distorted and look unnatural.

In order to avoid this, it is necessary to create a pattern that connects cleanly.

① Draw the base of the pattern material you want to make into a ribbon brush as shown below.

Register the material as a brush and it will be drawn as shown below.

As the pattern does not connect at the top and the bottom, it is not suitable for a ribbon brush as is. It is necessary to change it into a material that connects at the top and the bottom.

② Choose the [Marquee] tool → [Rectangle].

③ Make an appropriate selection of the upper half of the created pattern.

④ Change to the [Move Layers] tool and hold down the [Shift] key and while clicking the [↓] key to move down the selected area of the layer.

⑤ Press the [Ctrl] + [D] key to deselect and add the parts that are not connected.

* The red lines are the parts that needed to be drawn.

The outer parts where originally connected, so splitting them ensures that they connect properly when drawn.

As with difficult patterns like ruffled ribbons, it is a good idea to create the complicated image base first and then redrawing the inner parts.

[POINT] When using images as brush tip images

When creating ribbon brushes, it is still possible to use multiple brush tip images. In this case, it is necessary to ensure that the edges of the image are connected cleanly with the next image.

In particular, when displaying images randomly, it is necessary to ensure that every image fits in any given order

■ 2. Setting images as the brush

On how to register images as materials and how to create sub tools, refer to the following.

Once the prepared images are registered as materials, set them as the brush tip image. The image that will be registered as a ribbon brush is the following.

· Considering the image order

· Images are drawn from the left in the order in which they were added in the [Sub Tool Details] palette. (When repeat settings are set to anything other than random.)

It is possible to rearrange the order according to the repeat setting. When adjusting the “Repeat settings”, it is necessary to consider that the elements that have been inverted left and right do not appear right after each other, once the order is repeated.

· Considering the appearance

Registering multiple items to have them appear more often.

■3. Option settings

Settings need to be made according to the use of a brush, however, when creating a ribbon brush, please pay attention to the following items and settings.

· Orientation of the brush tip images

With the ribbon brush, it is essential that the top and bottom part of the image used for the brush tip connect properly, so it is necessary to perform these kinds of adjustment to make them fit accordingly.

In case the registered image is being connected left and right, change the direction of the image to 90.


Turn on the [Ribbon] for the stroke, and choose a [Repeat method] if multiple tip images are used.

・ Correction

Since the ribbon brush deforms the image according to the direction and curve of the stroke, it is recommended to apply a correction slightly stronger for a cleaner output.

If the pattern of the image is clear, yet it becomes uneven and distorted, add to the value for [Post correction].

However, as having a high value for [Post Correction] will strongly change the curve of the drawn line, it may not be drawn as expected. Therefore, if you want to draw a fine curve, it may be better to use a ruler.

If the image itself is very complex and if it does not matter if it is warped a little, set the [Stabilization] to a stronger value and the [Post correction] to a weaker one.

■ 4. Setting tool properties

After finishing with the brush settings, decide on the item to be displayed in the [Tool Properties] palette.

Set the elements, that might be practical to change when drawing to “Display”.

It is convenient to display the adjustment for [Stabilization] and [Post correction] in the [Tool Properties] palette so that it can be adjusted while drawing.

In addition, since ribbon brushes are often used by snapping them to rulers, it is recommended to display [Snap to Ruler] as well.

■5. Registering to initial settings

Register the adjusted settings for the initial settings.

Make sure to register this, because the settings will be returned to their initial state, in case you initialize the application via “Reset to initial value”.

Right-click on the material created in the Tool Properties palette, and then click [OK] in the dialog box..

[4] Creating a vine

Ribbon brushes are suitable for things like vines of roses and such.

■ 1. Preparing the images

Created a ribbon brush with an image where top and bottom fit perfectly, and prepared a flipped version of it.

The important thing here is, that the top and bottom of the same image match, as well as the top and bottom of the two images.

■ 2. Setting the images as the brush

Register the prepared image as a material.

· Considering the image order

Since we will set the random display at a later time, do not worry about the order and register more of the items you want to appear more often.

■3. Option settings

・Ribbon /・Repeat method

Turn on the ribbon mode and set the repeat method to “random”.

・Starting and ending

As a vine usually gets thinner as you go to the tip, set “Ending” as shown below.

Although this can be set to control the thickness with the pen’s pressure, the line becoming gradually thinner at a constant rate make drawing easier.

・Post correction

If post correction is not applied, the image may deform strongly and become uneven, so it is recommended to use post correction here.

Once finished with adjusting the settings, set what to display in the [Tool Properties] palette and perform “Register to initial setting”.

When drawing with the created brush, the direction of the thorns is displayed at random, which makes it feel more natural, and the brush also draws thinner strokes at the tip.

Ribbon brushes can used to express various things, depending on their usage and the images registered.

Please try making an original ribbon brush!



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