How to Skip (Bypass) Tool Activation When Selecting Brush Preset in Photoshop CC 2019

How to Skip (ByPass) Tool Activation When Selecting Brush Preset in Photoshop CC 2019
As you probably know there were changes in brush management starting with Photoshop CC 2018. The organization is much easier and any brush enabled tool preset can be converted into a brush preset preserving all its attributes.

Great, is there any problem? No, not a real problem but sometimes people want to use brush preset which is saved with Smudge Tool settings, for example, and Photoshop CC 2019 (current version while writing this post) is automatically activating that tool.

Want to use preset but to skip tool settings which are captured when saving preset? It is doable and that's what I am going to explain to you in this post: how to skip or bypass tool settings when choosing a brush preset for currently active brush enabled tool.

Why Photoshop is activating some other tool

Let's define problem one more time to stay on the same line. Let's say that you are painting using the Brush tool using some of the brush presets. Then you scroll through brushes and you see some interesting preset which you want to try in your project. You click on preset to activate it.

You start painting but instead of painting you are actually smudging and Smudge Tool is active! You click on Brush tool to activate it again then choose some other preset and Photoshop is automatically activating Mixer Brush Tool! Why in the world? Your bad day, bug or application is joking with you? Nothing is wrong with the application, it's not a bug but rather behavior based on captured tool settings when preset is saved.

Here is an explanation or the reason why Photoshop is activating some other tool when you choose preset.
When saving preset there is an option: Include Tool Settings which will capture tool settings and of course whichever brush enabled tool is active. When you or someone else click on preset to use it Photoshop will automatically activate captured tool with settings like Opacity, Blend mode...
New Brush dialog in Photoshop CC 2019
New Brush dialog where you can check Include Tool Settings option which will save information which tool is active and tool settings like Opacity, Blend mode... Exactly same settings and same tool will be activated with preset when you choose to use it.

How to skip tool activation

There is one helper and one keyboard shortcut which can help you.

When you open Brush Preset picker or Brushes panel there will be an icon in the top right corner as an indicator which tool is captured with preset. That's a visual helper to determine do you need to press keyboard shortcut while selecting preset to keep currently brush enabled tool active. If you do not see tool icon then click on panel menu and check Show Additional Preset Info.
Show Additional Preset Info in Photoshop Brushes panel
Additional Preset Info is option which will instruct Photoshop to show tool icon in the top right corner of brush preset preview. That tool will be activated when you choose preset.

To skip tool activation when choosing preset hold down Ctrl/Cmd + Alt/Opt and click on brush preset. That will activate preset but will skip tool which is captured (was active) when preset is saved.
Skip tool activation when selecting brush preset in Photoshop
If you want to skip tool activation when choosing preset just hold down Ctrl/Cmd + Alt/Opt while clicking on preset. This will assign preset to any active brush enabled tool and will skip tool which is captured as default when saving brush preset.

Product used in this tutorial:
Adobe Photoshop CC 2019

Brush presets


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