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Live brushes

Learn how to create realistic watercolor and oil paintings with live brushes in Adobe Fresco.

An artwork created with live brushes looks like a real-life painting; the watercolor stays wet, the oil paint looks thick and creamy. 

When you paint with a watercolor live brush, you can see the color bloom into adjacent areas of the canvas. With an oil live brush, you can create varied swirls of color by mixing oil colors. Live brushes are pixel-based and powered by Adobe Sensei


You cannot preview brush flow or brush size when you are working with live brushes in Fresco 1.1 on Windows. For more information, see Supported features on Windows and iOS.

Video tutorials: How to paint with live brushes

If you are using Adobe Fresco live brushes for the first time, watch these videos to become familiar with the user interface:

How to paint with watercolors that stay wet

How to paint with realistic oils

Types of live brushes

Watercolor live brushes

Brushes with paper texture and booming spread.

Brushes with watercolor paper texture that bloom and spread

Round Detail - Paint in various stroke widths from super-thin to bold and to fill in with paint. 

Wash Soft - Make lighter shades on a canvas with a soft washed out look. 

Wash Flat - Cover large areas quickly with a washed out watercolor look. 

Wet Spatter - Paint backgrounds for artwork with drops of color. 




Oil live brushes

Brushes with the texture and thickness of real oil paints

Flat - Make bold strokes and cover large areas quickly. Blend two areas with a smooth transition and use the edge for thin lines.

Round - Make calligraphic painting. Use variant pressure to create different thicknesses of strokes.

Filbert - Cover large areas that include some finer brushes. Use it to create a fine blend with the round edges of the brush.

Detail - Make finer detailing in smaller areas effectively. 

Glaze - Create a unique stained-glass effect with fluidity. 

Chunky - Get started easily and use dry brush techniques. 

Short - Make lettering with stylish strokes. 

How to use watercolor live brushes

Created using watercolor live brushes in Adobe Fresco

Try these steps to create the artwork shown here with watercolor live brushes. 

  1. In a new document, use the Fill   tool to give a flat fill to the background. 
  2. Add a new layer and create a basic shape of an orange using the Lasso   selection tool. 
  3. Double-tap the Live Brushes   icon and choose the Watercolor Wash Flat brush and paint the selected area. 
  4. Tune the brush settings to get a smaller size, less water flow, and 100% color flow. Add more details to the leaf and the stem. 
  5. Use the Brush selection tool to add other details like the freckles on the orange.  

Fresco does not support Watercolor brushes on Surface Pro X and Surface Pro 9 devices. For more information, see Supported features on iPad, iPhone, and Windows.

How to use oil live brushes

Created using an oil live brush in Adobe Fresco

Try these steps to create the artwork shown here with oil live brushes. 

  1. In a new document, double-tap the Pixel Brushes   icon and choose the Pencil brush from Sketching and draw an owl. 
  2. Add a new layer, choose a color for the background, and fill the layer with the Fill   tool. 
  3. Add another layer. Double-tap the Live Brushes   icon and choose Oilpaint Glaze Brush and start painting the owl.
  4. Choose Oilpaint Round Brush (small size) while working on the eyes. Choose Oilpaint Filbert Brush to add a variety of color strokes. 
  5. Work from dark tones to light tones to make the artwork richer.
  6. To remove the canvas texture, open the Oil Brush Settings control and change Canvas Texture to None.

Related resources

We've got you started with live brushes in Adobe Fresco. Take a step forward and learn how to unleash your creativity with pixel brushesvector brushescolors, and more.

Talk to us

If you have a question to ask or an idea to share, we would love to hear from you. Share your thoughts with the Adobe Fresco Community.


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