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How to change a Photoshop Brush Size and Hardness with a single key

 I’ve been using Photoshop for what feels like an eternity and only recently come across a tip and trick that will help you out if you deal with brushes.

I have known for a long time that you can use the Square brackets for increasing and decreasing the brush size (to increase press ] and decrease press [ ) instead of going to the Brush settings panel 

How To Change a Photoshop Brush Size and Hardness with a Single Key
How To Change a Photoshop Brush Size and Hardness with a Single Key

But I recently found out when you are using the brush holding down the ALT key on a PC or the Option key on a Mac and Right Clicking will allow you to make adjustments not only to the brush size but also the Hardness.

In order to achieve this

  1. Have the Brush Tool selected 
  2. Hold down the ALT key (PC) or Option key (Mac)
  3. Right click holding the button down, then drag:
  4. Left or Right to adjust the Brush Size

    How To Change a Photoshop Brush Size and Hardness with a Single Key
  5. Up or Down to adjust the Hardness

    How To Change a Photoshop Brush Size and Hardness with a Single Key

As an added BONUS you can also select a colour while using the Brush Tool simply hold the ALT key and this time left click to select the colour.

How To Change a Photoshop Brush Size and Hardness with a Single Key

As an Added Bonus

How To Change The Default Brush Size In Photoshop

You may find yourself using a certain brush size regularly and would love to have that size set to your default setting. Unfortunately, you can’t set a default brush size across all your brushes, but you can create a default brush size for individual brushes.

To set a default brush size in Photoshop, open the Brush Settings panel and pick the desired size for your brush. Then click on the hamburger menu and choose “New Brush Preset.” In the dialogue box that appears, check off the “Capture Brush Size In Preset” option and click OK to save the brush. Now you have a default size saved for your new brush.

The settings shown in your brush panel will vary depending on the brush you have selected. Once you make any adjustments to the brush in the brush settings panel, they’ll be applied to your active brush, but they won’t be saved. That’s why after you adjust the size of the brush, you need to create a new brush preset.

Clicking on the hamburger menu and going to “New Brush Preset,” you can save your current settings as a new brush to use later on.

A new dialogue box will appear, allowing you to rename your new brush if you wish. The most important part here is that you check off the “Capture Brush Size in Preset” option. Without this, you will not have a default size saved for your new brush.

After the brush is saved, it will appear as a new brush at the bottom of the Brush Preset Panel. Now when you select that particular brush, no matter your prior brush size settings, it will reset the brush size back to the default value you’ve chosen.

So now you know three different ways to change the brush size in Photoshop, along with a helpful option to set a default brush size for new brushes. The right resizing shortcut will depend on your editing style, but I prefer the click and drag option the most. Since you can change the brush size and hardness all in one click, it’s the most efficient way of doing things.

With that said, remembering some keyboard shortcuts can be challenging, so the [ or ] keys and the Brush Preset Panel offer some other worthy alternatives to brush resizing.

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