July 13, 2021

How and where to find the best GIMP brushes

In this article, you'll find a list of the most common sources of free and paid-for brushes for GIMP and Photoshop.

As usual, all the external links are 100% clean. If you know of a reliable source that is not mentioned, let us know in the comment section below and we'll do our best to incorporate it.

Table of content:


Deviant Art

Deviant Art (deviantart.com) is a website that promotes independent artists of the drawing and painting kind, both in digital and traditional media. As with most open spaces of the kind, the quality of the material supplied varies widely. Be aware that you will need to register an account with Deviant Art in order to download anything. If you're only experimenting with brushes and have time to invest in personalizing the brushes, then Deviant Art is the go-to destination for your GIMP brush needs; despite the website's weaknesses, there's simply nothing better out there.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros:

  • All brushes are free
  • It provides a good selection of native GIMP brushes.
  • There's A LOT of free brushes to choose from.

Cons:

  • The presentation is inconsistent and outdated; in many cases, you'll have to download and install the brushes in order to find out what they are
  • Because of the user-generated nature of the content, the quality and presentation of the available collections is inconsistent
  • The lack of curation and standardization means that the level of effort necessary to incorporate and customize the brush sets can be quite high
  • An account is required

Brush Lovers

Brush Lovers (brushlovers.com) is an ad-supported website that hosts tons of brushes and other graphic assets for Photoshop and similar applications. The website is nicely laid out and the visuals are consistent and very helpful.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros:

  • 1000s of free brushes for all needs.
  • Helpful search functionality.
  • Nice presentation with informative keywords.
  • No registration is required.

Cons:

  • Several brushes are samples from larger, paid-for collections.
  • No native GIMP brushes.

MyPhotoshopBrushes

MyPhotoshopBrushes (myphotoshopbrushes.com) is a modern repository of free Photoshop (.abr) brushes. The layout of the site is modern and the content seems to be updated on a regular basis. The brushes are described with a good amount of detail, usually to include a complete list of all the brushes in a collection.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros:

  • Great visuals with a straightforward user experience.
  • No registration is required.

Cons:

  • Photoshop brushes only. No native GIMP brushes.

Fbrushes

Fbrushes (fbrushes.com) is an ad-supported repository of free Photoshop (.abr) brushes. There's a good amount of brushes available; however, the already confusing interface is further degraded by a barrage of Shutterstock advertisements.
2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)

Pros:

  • Good amount of free Photoshop (.abr) brushes

Cons:

  • Search functionality is minimal and often not helpful
  • Overwhelming advertising
  • Generic presentation with no preview

Envato Elements

Envato Elements (elements.envato.com) is a well-known commercial website that provides resources for digital designers. It offers a wide range of paid-for Photoshop (.abr) brushes -- around 1000 at the time of this writing. Most collections are high quality and the standard presentation makes it easy to find the brush sets visually.
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pros:

  • Good selection of professionally-designed brush sets
  • Medium to high-quality resources
  • Excellent presentation
  • Uses a somewhat inexpensive subscription model

Cons:

  • Paid-for products only
  • No native GIMP brushes: Photoshop only

Design Cuts

Design Cuts (designcuts.com) is a web store for designers, with products priced on the higher end of the spectrum. They offer a huge amount of commercial Photoshop brush sets, many of which you won't find elsewhere. The average price of a brush set hovers around the $20 mark.
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pros:

  • High-quality assets
  • Great search engine and filtering options

Cons:

  • Relatively costly
  • No native GIMP brushes: Photoshop .abr only

Creative Market

Creative Market (creativemarket.com) is a great place to shop for high-quality paid design assets. It's a well-structured virtual marketplace with plenty of options to choose from.
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pros:

  • Good quality assets
  • Author-oriented stores
  •  The Web interface makes it easy to find relevant products
  • Weekly freebies

Cons:

  • No native GIMP brushes: Photoshop .abr only

Behance

Behance (behance.net) is an Adobe project that acts as an open showroom for designers and digital artists to showcase and promote their work. You could think of Behance as the Pinterest of designers. Behance is not a shopping site per se, but rather a hosting place where artists can showcase their productions and get feedback.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros:

  • Lots of free and innovative brush sets you won't find elsewhere
  • New material coming in daily

Cons:

  • Often hard to tell whether a product or asset is free or paid
  • Can be overwhelming to the casual visitor

Other notable outlets

MightyDeals

MightDeals (mightydeals.com) is a marketplace that showcases bundles for and from digital artists and small designer outlets. They publish new offers several times a week. The prices are unbeatable. The deals are advertized as limited-time offers, but the majority of those stay on the marketplace for many months past their advertised expiry date. Use the search option to locate the active bundles that include brushes.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Creative Fabrica

CreativeFabrica (creativefabrica.com) is a marketplace targeting home-based creators and hobbyists. Despite being skewed towards non-designers, Creative Fabrica offers a ton of resources for casual designers. The freebies section is huge and worth the visit.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Design Bundles

DesignBundles (designbundles.net) is yet another marketplace for paid design assets. The DesignBundle marketplace is similar in scope, size, and content to Creative Fabrica, while in our experience it offers a slightly under-par quality of experience. On the other hand, it does have a significant freebies section that's worth looking into.
3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)


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