Photoshop doesn’t do well with light pressure recognition. Making thick-to-thin strokes requires a lot more fidelity than would even be necessary with a proper sable brush and ink in meatspace. It blows out pressure at the low end and makes soft lines blobby as hell.
You can combat this by turning off the lowest pressure settings of your tablet at the driver level, but you shouldn’t have to. I want a brush engine that senses those slight variances and accurately translates them.
It’s possible. Manga Studio, which I’ve used for inking since about 2006, does a stellar job at light pressure translation. Getting feathered strokes that look like they came from my Raphael 8404 #4 sable brush is no harder than inking in the real world. Painter does a pretty good job of this too. At the very least, both allow you to tweak how the brush engine interprets your strokes on a per-brush-setting basis instead of using a sledgehammer on a finishing nail by leaving you with an only recourse of neutering your full range of pressure sensitivity at the driver level.
Photoshop, Illustrator, and Flash all exhibit this problem. I don’t know if it’s an interpolation/smoothing issue or something larger, but I do know that the result is shitty lines.
Since around the time of the Photoshop CS6 Beta, I’ve been attempting to create a brush that combats these shortcomings by dropping out some of the lowest pressure mark-making with a combination of flow and texture settings. The result is a brush that, while not 100% opaque at the lightest marks, provides a hell of a lot more fidelity and control.
This is a quick video of the brush in action. Below is a download link for the latest test version of the brush’s Tool Preset.
DOWNLOAD THE BRUSH TOOL PRESET
Illustrator Ray Frenden just made your life a lot easier with his Photoshop brush tool presets. Say thank you.