I recently installed Photoshop but the brushes (default brushes in Photoshop as well as my own custom brushes) come out pixelated and rigid. I know that there is no way to remove pixelation as Photoshop is a raster program, but I would like to make the brushes less pixelated as I have seen in many drawings made with Photoshop.

I tried using a big canvas, high resolution, 100% hardness, and minimal spacing. This does fix it a little bit, but the brush still has the same problem, albeit to a slightly lesser effect. The pixelation occurs when it's zoomed out. I am not looking to make vector lines, but to instead make clean lines in Photoshop with the brush tool.

5x5 inches; 1000 pixels per inch. Not zoomed in. Photoshop default brush.

Brush with 10% spacing

Brush with 10% spacing and no shape dynamics



It is partly due to the settings in Photoshop, but also to do with the input for the source, i.e. your mouse or tablet. One way to smooth input is using a plugin like Lazy Nezumi. It's like the Streamline parameter in Procreate, but with heaps more options. Inexpensive and powerful.

  • Is it possible to make smooth, non-fuzzy lines without plug-ins with a mouse? – CaricatureSketch Apr 18 '19 at 22:07
  • You could try using a piece of flexible plastic on your desk and running your mouse physically along it while you draw the line, I know some people who use a physical ruler with a tablet pen so.. it could help! There's also software like this that could help: silky-shark.findmysoft.com – saskiel Apr 18 '19 at 22:13
  • @CaricatureSketch, there could be some lag going on. You may want to Google for posts talking about brush lag or jittery lines or poor brush performance to fix the underlying issue first. You'll probably find about 2 bazillion posts from Google. Brush smoothing is for clean line work (for the most part). You don't want to turn it on for much anything else... That said, Photoshop CC has brush smoothing now, so third party applications may be unnecessary...There's also something about your lines that look like you used mouse and not a stylus... – Joonas Apr 18 '19 at 22:47
  • There is no lag. And yes, I did use a mouse. – CaricatureSketch Apr 18 '19 at 22:54
  • @CaricatureSketch, the images do look a tad sharp on the edges, but otherwise, these jittery sections don't seem abnormal, given you're using a mouse. You pretty much have to use brush smoothing if you're using a mouse to draw... Though drawing with a mouse is not something I'd recommend to begin with. – Joonas Apr 19 '19 at 16:06

This example is with a default brush, 10% spacing.

Press the right mouse button and set the hardness to 0%:


If you need a softer brush, reduce the flow percentage from the top options bar:


  • I'm trying to make a hard, smooth stroke (not rigid), similar to the first stroke in the first .GIF. How did you make the stroke like that? – CaricatureSketch Apr 18 '19 at 21:50
  • Did you set the spacing to 10% as written in the answer? – user120647 Apr 18 '19 at 22:05
  • Yes, I have set the spacing to 10%. – CaricatureSketch Apr 18 '19 at 22:07
  • Make a screen capture of your brush presets and insert it in the question. – user120647 Apr 18 '19 at 22:09
  • Uncheck the shape dynamics! – user120647 Apr 18 '19 at 22:25

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.