Design insights & tutorials.

Brush Pilot: Quickly Browse Your Photoshop Brushes

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For all you brush junkies out there: Brush Pilot is a brand-new piece of Mac OS X software for previewing Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Photoshop Elements Brushes (.abr files), Brush Pilot allows you to instantly preview your brushes without having to load them into Photoshop.

Brush Pilot was created by Jay Hilgert, the designer and blogger behind design tip blog BittBox.com.

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Brush Pilot automatically finds every brush file on your hard drive, just launch it and let it do it’s thing. Brush Pilot also knows what version(s) of Photoshop you have, and the interface separates your installed brushes from the rest. You can Trash unwanted brushes, reveal the .abr file in Finder, and even install selected files into all versions of Photoshop on your system with a single click, menus, Control/Right + Click, or keyboard shortcuts.

If your Photoshop brush library is out of control, Brush Pilot looks to be worth the $15 price tag. And keep your eyes peeled—we’ll be doing a giveaway soon with some free licenses for Brush Pilot for the lucky winners!

We’ve also got a brief interview with Jay Hilgert, the creator of Brush Pilot:

Tell us a little about yourself and your background

I’m a graphic/web designer, blogger and now, I guess I’m in the software business. I started out at a small design firm in St. Louis and now I blog full time, design fonts, and do freelance web design.

What inspired you to create Brush Pilot?

I got tired of Googling and searching for a tool like Brush Pilot, so I decided to take matters into my own hands. Not only could I make a tool for myself, but I could provide an affordable, and useful tool to the global Photoshop community. In short, I wanted a brush previewer really bad, and I thought there would be plenty of people just like me, who’ve waited for years for a decent solution to brush management on the Mac.

How long did it take to create Brush Pilot?

A little over a year (not working full time though).

Any interesting things that you learned about Photoshop while developing BP?

Actually, yes. I had no idea that there were 2 locations on your mac where you can store brushes. I’ve always just installed brushes in the Applications > Photoshop CS3 > Presets > Brushes Folder. Turns out that individual users have their own folder in User > Library > Application Support > Adobe > Adobe Photoshop CS3 > Presets > Brushes, although, not all versions of Photoshop use this location.

Future features/plans for Brush Pilot?

Definitely drag and drop for version 2. I’d also like to have the ability to Shift + Select files for installation/deletion, and a full size PNG export.

We’re also thinking about moving the brush names and pixel dimensions from a tooltip to displaying them under each preview.

I’m also open to suggestions.

For every great Mac app, there’s the inevitable question: will there be a Windows version?

I haven’t even thought about it yet. It’s my first app, so I’m taking baby steps.

About the Author, George Coghill

George Coghill isa freelance humorous illustrator/cartoonist specializing in mascot cartoon character design & cartoon logos. His cartooning & illustration work can be seen at CoghillCartooning.com and at his cartooning and illustration blog. Be sure to follow me on Twitter here!
Discover More by George Coghill

Discussion

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  • simonh4

    This is a really cool app.

  • http://www.fotodepp.de/ Patrick

    Oh damn! I want it for windows! :( please!

  • betterthanhuman

    Awesome!

  • Merrick

    There has been an .abr viewer for windows for ages, funnily enough called… abr viewer – http://abrviewer.sourceforge.net/

    And it's open source ;)

  • http://www.fotodepp.de/ Patrick

    Oh! Thank u Merrick for the Link. :D I had not thought, that there are a windows version of that. :D but its cool :)

  • devildog110

    nice

  • http://www.raylan.com.br/ Raylan Kindl Bueno

    Very cool !! I'm a poor guy who doesn't have a mac… i will have to install the abrviewer, thanks goMedia to share it ! =D

  • tk

    wow…great one. Thanks for sharing!

  • http://designbump.com/ John Campbell

    Awesome! Now I just need to switch to a mac :(

  • http://coghillcartooning.com George Coghill

    Excellent, thanks for sharing!

  • http://designawardsgallery.com/ Best CSS Gallery

    Great! Thank you. I've just switched to mac and this soft will be really handy

  • Michael

    There is also a FREE QuickLook plugin for viewing brushes, if you have OS X 10.5 (Leopard). You have to view one file at a time, but it works pretty well, and you can use cursor keys to move from one to the next within a folder. You can find it here: http://brushviewer.sourceforge.net/

  • rorym

    This is very handy as my brushes were mounting up…think Ive got about 300 now, so trying to go through them all is a nightmare! Thanks for sharing the love

  • rorym

    ….wooo, now I'm a memeber…ALRIGHT!!!

  • http://www.crearedesign.co.uk/ Michael Thomas

    Good idea to have this. When is the competition going ahead to win a license? Haha you should keep this as a mac online app. Designers should not use Windows!!!

  • rorym

    This is very handy as my brushes were mounting up…think Ive got about 300 now, so trying to go through them all is a nightmare! Thanks for sharing the love

  • rorym

    ….wooo, now I'm a memeber…ALRIGHT!!!

  • http://www.crearedesign.co.uk/ Michael Thomas

    Good idea to have this. When is the competition going ahead to win a license? Haha you should keep this as a mac online app. Designers should not use Windows!!!

  • simonh4

    That's the one I was trying to find on my computer and to post here ;-) Thanks for doing so.

  • http://www.nicernews.com/ Megan Sheehan

    What a great application. I love the simple interface and small file size. And only 15 bucks??? It just made my photoshop experience much easier overall. Great App!

  • CL114C0777498D

    this program looks like pretty much exactly what i need. shame you didn't make it for grown-up computers. :(

  • Dan

    Excellent job..
    dizi izle

  • John

    Great post!
    dizi izle