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Brushes | Substance 3D Modeler


Learn about using brushes in Modeler and how different brushes can achieve different effects.

What is the brush?

The brush determines where and how the selected tool's effect will be applied. For example, with the Clay tool, the brush shows where clay will be added and what shape it will have. Every tool has a brush, except the Select tool which is a little special - you can learn about the Select tool here.

For tools that have a brush, you can adjust the behavior of the brush in the parameters area of the Palette. The image below shows the brush parameters for the Cube brush.

You can use different brushes with the same tool to achieve different effects, just like painting with a wide brush in real life will create a different effect than painting with a pointed brush. You can see the results of different brush shape parameters here.


💻You can resize the brush quickly with ctrl + click and drag.
🥽Use quick tune to modify the brush quickly:

  • Use TJ ↑↓ to adjust brush size. Use TJ ←→ to adjust hardness.
  • Press and hold T1 to activate quick tune. This allows you to quickly adjust the brush shape. While holding T1:
    • Move the tool hand along each axis to scale the brush.
    • Hold ST to constrain scaling vertically.
    • Move SJ ←→ to taper the shape.

If it's your first time using Modeler, it's worth spending a few minutes playing with the parameters of different brush shapes. The brush is your primary method of working with clay, so it's useful to know what options are available.

Brush parameters

Many brush parameters behave the same way across tools. Common brush parameters are listed below:

Brush Shape

Select the base shape for the brush

Different brush shapes have different parameters available. For example, you can adjust the width, height, and depth of a cube, or you can adjust the radius and thickness of a torus. A full list of brush shape parameters is available here.


Modify the size of the brush

Increase or decrease the size of the brush. Very large brush sizes may cause a delay between using the tool and results appearing.

Toggle pressure sensitivity

Pressure sensitivity allows you to dynamically adjust the scale of clay as you draw out your strokes.

  • 🥽 Vary the amount of pressure you apply with TT during your stroke.
  • 💻 Pressure sensitivity works best with a pressure sensitive pen and tablet.
Toggle single modeSingle mode will only place a single stamp of your brush when you pull the trigger instead of constantly applying clay along your stroke.
Toggle Lazy strokeWith Lazy stroke enabled, the stroke is dragged behind the cursor rather than appearing directly beneath it. This helps create smoother strokes and clean curves.
Toggle Steady strokeSteady stroke takes time to catch up with the cursor. Unlike Lazy stroke, Steady stroke will eventually reach the cursor. This helps create smoother strokes and clean curves.

VR Brush position

You can adjust the position of the brush relative to the tool hand while in VR.

  1. Move Nib on the support hand so that it's at the center of the brush (the Nib is the small cone floating at the tip of the support hand)
  2. Pull ST to grab the brush with the support hand.
  3. Move the brush relative to the tool hand.
  4. Release ST to finalize the change.
It's currently not possible to reset the brush position relative to the VR controllers to default without closing and reopening Modeler.
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