When it comes to emulating analog art mediums, there’s rarely a better option than Photoshop brushes. Brush sets are essentially collections of high resolution scans of real life brush strokes, which are then converted to brush tools that a user can install in Photoshop and utilize in a similar fashion to stamping.

The following images are custom samples I’ve created from eight hand-picked, free Photoshop brushes you can download! Enjoy.

1. Acrylic Photoshop brushes

acrylic paint photoshop

A good starting point is to install a simple acrylic paint brush set. This set does a nice job of capturing the wispy qualities of dry brushing with acrylic paint.

Use this on business cards for companies with down-to-earth sensibility, in website backgrounds with a hand-made vibe—or use your imagination to think of any number of creative uses!


2. Colored pencil brushes

Colored Pencil photoshop

Colored pencils are notorious for bringing light hearted joy and mind melting color blending. This free Photoshop brush set is great for child-oriented designs, happy flyer or poster backgrounds and any other fun, youthful designs.


3. Pencil brushes

Pencil photoshop brush

Graphite is an art medium with inherent roughness and texture. These Photoshop brushes have the ability to give a design a harder edge or sophistication. It makes me think of new-age sushi restaurants or suit tailoring. Use your imagination to find an appropriate context to bust out this brush set!


4. Charcoal brushes

Charcoal photoshop brush

Similar to the pencil brush set, this charcoal brush set offers a slightly wider range of texture, which can be helpful in molding these black-and-white edgy brushes to a variety of different style sensibilities. Think business card backgrounds, landing pages, brochures or even flyers.


5. Splatter watercolor brushes

Splatter Watercolor photoshop

Perhaps on the slightly less realistic side of the spectrum is the splatter watercolor brush set. This one is definitely “in-your-face,” yet retains a positive and energetic vibe. Think extreme sports, arts and craft sale or music festival.


6. Watercolor Photoshop brushes

Watercolor photoshop brush

Settling into the realistic and gentle side of watercolor is this Photoshop brush set. It contains great fidelity and articulation in the water pooling surrounding the edges of these brush strokes.

It definitely captures what we all know as watercolor painting, and therefore would work perfect in according design contexts—Easter, baby showers, pastel colors, spring, peace and tranquility.


7. Spray paint brushes

Spray Paint Photoshop brush

No set of free Photoshop brushes would be complete without the classic drip spray paint. This particular set does a nice job of capturing some of the “fuzz” surrounding the outside of a given spot. This brush set would come in handy for “street” oriented contests, extreme sports or even dance-related designs.


8. Drip spray paint brushes

Drip spray paint photoshop

Finally we end with an extra drippy spray paint Photoshop brush set. While this set definitely delivers strong with the drips, it also comes with it’s own unique style of “debris” surrounding each spot.

Again, consider this for sports related contests, street art or even utilize it creatively for splatter style background textures.



Photoshop brushes are an easy, diverse way to unleash your inner artist and take your designs to a new stylistic level. And who can say no to the price tag? Free!

Want to learn more about Photoshop brushes? Check out our articles on Brush Tool basics and the Brush Panel.