No matter how good of a digital artist you are, you’ll find that sometimes some special effects can only be achieved with the right custom Photoshop Brushes. Here on Template.net, we’ve offered scores of free and almost-free brushes to help all levels of digital painters get convincing and realistic effects with their art, easily. This collection features all the best brushes to get a cracked surface effect. These include everything from dried mud, cracked cement, spider-web-cracked tarmac, wood bark, and others.
Many of them are available in royalty-free, high-quality brush files (around 2500 px) that you can download and import right away.
Note: If you’re a Corel painter, version 2016 allows you to import ABR (Photoshop brush) files.
Free Grunge Cracked Brushes Photoshop
Free Cracked Brushes
10 High-Quality Cracked Brushes
Cracked Brushes by AnnFrost
Free Cracked Wall Brushes
Why Do I Need Cracked Brushes?
The same reason you might need Photoshop Lightning Brushes and Sparkle Photoshop Brushes. These are effects that are difficult to get right, especially if you want to look realistic
It’s all in the attention to detail.
“But I can paint my own cracks.”
I’d like to see you try. (We offer certain grunge brush sets as well that you could try with.) But the whole point of custom-designed digital art tools is to achieve these same effects, maybe even better, with the least time and effort possible, so you can devote more time to the other nonreplicable parts of your art.
Doing everything freehand is great, but it’s not for everyone. You can use hashes and strokes trying to imitate the intricate lines on a dried mud land, but look at the 16 Cracked Skin Brushes and see if you can replicate that. Sometimes only a custom brush can get you the effect you want.
This doesn’t mean a good brush set eliminates the need for artistic skill. It is all about how you use the brush as well. There are ways you can get it wrong:
- Overusing the same brush that the copy-paste-like pattern starts to become apparent.
- Not paying attention to how the lines meet.
- Using different kinds of cracks on the same surface. Some surfaces crack into small square-ish pieces. Others are more resistant and harbor at most one or two strokes. Others shatter in chunks and shed texture. Dried mud will crack differently from tarmac and from glass.
Unless you are willing to sweat all these by hand, these amazing crack brushes will be your manna from digital heaven.
16 Cracked Skin Brushes
10 Pavement Cracked Brushes
Cracked Concrete Brushes in Photoshop
Vector Crack Brushes
Notes on Using These Brushes Realistically
- A lot of you who use Digital Photoshop Brushes on a daily basis may think this is too obvious, but for the newbies: these brushes are meant to be used more like stamps and less like actual brushes. If you drag them, you will get an odd-shaped smudge.
- If you are painting on a pressure-sensitive graphic tablet, you can get more than one effect from the same brush depending on how hard you press the stylus.
- Try free-form selecting and rotating the image (if you are at CS6 and over) to add more variety and randomness to your patterns.
- Use only as much as your intuition tells you, but take note of how the ends of lines join (or don’t join) to other crack lines. You can be random mostly if a cracked surface appears out of age, wear and tear. If there is a point of impact that caused the crack, make sure to put more pressure at that point. (I.e., if someone has driven a car into a wall or punched something, there may even be flakes fallen off.)