How to Import Brushes into Procreate: A Step-by-Step Guide
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 9 min read


1. Preparing Brush Files for Import

2. Methods for Importing Brushes into Procreate

3. Brush Management in Procreate

4. Troubleshooting Common Issues

5. Pro Tips for Maximizing Brush Usage

Looking for ways to enhance your digital art experience in Procreate? One way to do that is by importing custom brushes that can take your artwork to the next level. In this blog post, we'll walk you through the process of how to import brushes into Procreate and the steps necessary to ensure a smooth and easy import. We'll cover everything from preparing your brush files to managing your brushes within the app. So, let's dive right in!

1. Preparing Brush Files for Import

Before you start importing brushes into Procreate, it's essential to have your brush files ready and organized. This section will guide you through the crucial steps of preparing your files, ensuring compatibility, and organizing them for easy access.

Supported File Formats

Procreate supports a variety of file formats for brushes, but the most common ones are:

  • .brush: The native Procreate brush format.
  • .brushset: A collection of Procreate brushes bundled together.
  • .abr: Adobe Photoshop brush format. Procreate can import most of these brushes, but keep in mind that some features might not work as intended due to differences between the two programs.

By ensuring your brushes are in one of these supported formats, you'll have a seamless experience when importing them into Procreate.

Organizing Files for Easy Access

Having a well-organized brush library will make it much easier for you to find and use the brushes you need. Consider the following tips for organizing your files:

  • Create separate folders for different types of brushes, such as inking, painting, or texture brushes.
  • Name your files and folders in a clear and consistent manner. This will help you quickly identify the brushes you're looking for.
  • Keep your brush files in a location that's easy to access, such as the Files app on your iPad or a cloud storage service like iCloud, Google Drive, or Dropbox.

Ensuring File Compatibility

While Procreate is generally great at handling various file formats, there might be instances where a brush doesn't behave as expected or fails to import. To avoid these issues, follow these simple tips:

  • Check for updates to both Procreate and the brushes you're trying to import. Developers may release updates that improve compatibility and fix issues.
  • If you're importing Photoshop brushes, be aware that some features may not translate perfectly into Procreate. Test the brushes to see how they perform and make adjustments as needed.

Now that your brush files are prepared and organized, it's time to dive into the various methods for importing them into Procreate.

2. Methods for Importing Brushes into Procreate

With your brush files ready and organized, it's time to learn how to import brushes into Procreate. There are several methods to choose from, so let's explore each one and find the best option for your needs.

Drag and Drop Method

The drag and drop method is a quick and easy way to import brushes directly from the Files app on your iPad. Here's how you can do it:

  1. Open Procreate and the Files app side by side in split view on your iPad.
  2. Navigate to the folder containing your brush files in the Files app.
  3. Press and hold the desired brush file, then drag it over to the Procreate app.
  4. Drop the file into the brush panel, and voila! Your brush is now imported.

Remember, this method works best when your brush files are already saved on your iPad, so make sure you have them handy before attempting this process.

Import from Files App

Another way to import brushes into Procreate is by using the built-in import feature within the app itself. Follow these steps:

  1. Open Procreate and tap the brush icon to access the brush panel.
  2. In the top right corner, tap the "+" button to create a new brush.
  3. Select "Import" from the menu that appears.
  4. The Files app will open, allowing you to navigate to your brush files. Tap the file you want to import, and Procreate will add it to your brush library.

This method is convenient if you have your brushes stored in iCloud Drive or other cloud storage services, as it allows you to access them directly from within Procreate.

Import via Cloud Storage

If you prefer to keep your brush files in cloud storage services like Google Drive or Dropbox, you can still import them into Procreate with ease. Here's how:

  1. Open your preferred cloud storage app on your iPad and locate the brush file you want to import.
  2. Tap the "Export" or "Share" button (depending on your cloud storage app) and choose "Copy to Procreate" from the available options.
  3. Procreate will automatically open and import the brush file into your brush library.

Keep in mind that you may need to have the cloud storage app installed on your iPad for this method to work.

Now that you know how to import brushes into Procreate, it's time to learn how to manage and organize them within the app.

3. Brush Management in Procreate

Now that you've mastered how to import brushes into Procreate, it's time to level up your skills by diving into brush management. In this section, we'll explore how to create custom brush sets, organize your brushes, and edit them to suit your needs. So, let's get started!

Creating Custom Brush Sets

Organizing your brushes into custom sets is a game-changer when it comes to finding the right brush for your project quickly. Here's how to create your own brush sets:

  1. Open Procreate and tap the brush icon to access the brush panel.
  2. Scroll down to the bottom of the brush panel and tap the "+" button to create a new brush set.
  3. Give your new brush set a descriptive name, like "Watercolor Brushes" or "Inking Tools."
  4. Drag and drop your imported brushes into the new set for easy access. Remember, you can always rearrange them later to keep things tidy.

Custom brush sets are perfect for organizing your brushes based on their purpose, style, or even the artist who created them. Say goodbye to endless scrolling and hello to a more efficient workflow!

Organizing Brushes within Sets

Now that you have your custom brush sets, it's time to organize your brushes. A well-organized brush set will save you precious time during your creative process. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Open a brush set by tapping on its name in the brush panel.
  2. Press and hold a brush thumbnail until it "lifts."
  3. Drag the brush to a new position within the set and release it to reorder.
  4. Repeat this process until you've arranged your brushes in a way that makes sense to you, such as by style, function, or frequency of use.

You might even consider organizing your brushes by color or texture—whatever works best for you and your creative process!

Editing and Customizing Brushes

One of the best features of Procreate is the ability to edit and customize brushes to fit your unique style. Let's explore how to do this:

  1. Select a brush from your library by tapping on its thumbnail in the brush panel.
  2. Tap the "Settings" icon (it looks like a wrench) at the top of the brush panel to open the Brush Settings.
  3. Experiment with the various options and sliders to adjust the brush's appearance, behavior, and more. For example, you can tweak the brush size, opacity, spacing, and even its texture.
  4. When you're happy with your customized brush, tap "Done" to save your changes. Don't worry; you can always reset the brush later if you change your mind.

Pro Tip: If you want to experiment with your brush settings without losing the original brush, tap "Duplicate" in the Brush Settings before making any changes. This way, you can always go back to the original brush if needed.

With your brushes now imported, organized, and customized to perfection, you're well on your way to becoming a Procreate pro. But, what happens when things don't go as planned? Fear not! In the next section, we'll tackle common issues and how to troubleshoot them.

4. Troubleshooting Common Issues

Even the most skilled Procreate artists can run into occasional snags, but don't worry—we've got your back! In this section, we'll address some common issues when importing and managing brushes in Procreate and provide straightforward solutions to get you back on track. Let's dive in!

Resolving Import Errors

So you've tried importing brushes into Procreate but encountered an error? Fret not! Here are a few tips to help you resolve import issues:

  • Check the file format: Make sure your brush file is in a supported format (.brush, .brushset, or .abr). If it's not, you'll need to find a compatible version or use a different brush.
  • Verify the file's integrity: Sometimes, files can get corrupted during download or transfer. Try re-downloading the brush file or ask the creator for a fresh copy.
  • Update Procreate: Ensure you're using the latest version of Procreate, as outdated versions may not support certain brushes or features. Head to the App Store and check for updates.

With these handy tips, you'll be back to importing brushes into Procreate in no time!

Locating Missing Brushes

Have you imported a brush but can't seem to find it in your library? Don't panic! Here are a couple of steps to help you locate those elusive brushes:

  1. Check your brush sets: It's possible that the brush was imported into a different set than you expected. Browse through your custom and default sets to see if it's hiding there.
  2. Search for the brush: Use the search bar at the top of the brush panel to search for the brush by name. If it's in your library, this will bring it right to the forefront.

By following these steps, you'll be reunited with your missing brushes and ready to continue your artistic journey.

Resetting Brushes to Default Settings

Did you make changes to a brush and now want to restore its original settings? No problem! Here's how to reset a brush to its default settings:

  1. Select the brush you'd like to reset from your brush library.
  2. Tap the "Settings" icon at the top of the brush panel to open the Brush Settings.
  3. Scroll to the bottom of the settings panel and tap "Reset" to restore the brush to its original settings.

And there you have it—your brush is now back to its original state, and you can continue experimenting with confidence.

With these troubleshooting tips in your arsenal, you're now better equipped to tackle any bumps in the road on your Procreate journey. But wait, there's more! In the next section, we'll share some pro tips for maximizing brush usage and taking your digital art to the next level.

5. Pro Tips for Maximizing Brush Usage

Now that you're well-versed in importing brushes into Procreate and troubleshooting any issues that might arise, let's explore some pro tips to help you make the most of your brushes. We'll cover brush shortcuts and gestures, blending techniques, and advanced customization to elevate your digital art game. Ready? Let's dive in!

Brush Shortcuts and Gestures

Speed up your workflow and enhance your drawing experience by mastering brush shortcuts and gestures in Procreate. Here are a few handy ones to start with:

  • Quick resizing: While drawing, use a two-finger pinch to quickly resize your brush. This allows you to seamlessly switch between brush sizes without interrupting your creative flow.
  • Instant opacity change: Want to change your brush's opacity on-the-fly? Simply swipe left or right with two fingers to increase or decrease the opacity, without having to open the brush settings.
  • Undo and redo: Made a mistake? No worries! Tap with two fingers to undo, and tap with three fingers to redo. Now you can quickly fix errors without breaking your concentration.

By incorporating these shortcuts and gestures into your Procreate routine, you'll streamline your process and make your digital art sessions even more enjoyable.

Brush Blending Techniques

One of the most powerful features of Procreate is its ability to blend colors and textures, allowing you to create stunning and realistic artwork. Let's explore two blending techniques using brushes:

  1. Smudge tool: Select the smudge tool (the finger icon) and choose a brush to blend with. Gently swipe across the area you want to blend, and watch as the colors merge seamlessly. Experiment with different brushes to achieve unique blending effects.
  2. Using low-opacity brushes: Another way to blend is by using a low-opacity brush. Choose a soft brush and lower its opacity, then gently paint over the area where you want the colors to blend. This method creates a subtle transition between colors and is perfect for fine detail work.

By mastering these blending techniques, you'll have even more control over your artwork and be able to achieve stunning results in Procreate.

Advanced Brush Customization

While Procreate comes with an extensive library of brushes, sometimes you might want to create your own unique brush to achieve a specific effect. With advanced brush customization, you can do just that! Here are some tips to get you started:

  • Shape and Grain: Procreate brushes are composed of a shape and a grain. Experiment with different combinations of shapes and grains to create entirely new brushes. You can even import your own images to use as shapes or grains for a truly personalized touch.
  • Adjust brush settings: Dive into the brush settings panel to fine-tune your brush's behavior. Adjust attributes like spacing, scatter, and jitter to create brushes that perfectly suit your needs. Remember, if you're unsure about a setting, you can always reset the brush to its default settings.

With advanced brush customization, the possibilities are virtually endless. As you experiment and create new brushes, you'll be able to develop your own unique artistic style in Procreate.

Now that you've learned how to import brushes into Procreate and discovered some pro tips for maximizing brush usage, you're well on your way to becoming a Procreate master! So, grab your iPad, load up those brushes, and unleash your creativity. Happy drawing!

If you've mastered importing brushes into Procreate and are ready to put your skills to the test, check out the workshop 'How to Draw A Fruit In ProCreate' by Vicky Catalan. This workshop will guide you through the process of drawing a fruit using Procreate, allowing you to practice your newly acquired skills and further develop your digital artistry.