Corel Painter 17 adds new brushes, gradient tools, and texture painting

Painter stays on top with new features and enhancements for professional artists.

Corel Painter has a long history of serving fine artists, illustrators, comic and manga mavens, and photographers, and every year the company conjures up new features and enhancements to dazzle the faithful. Corel Painter 17, released Tuesday, comes across with some innovative brush actions, alongside new gradient tools and advanced interfaces.

Corel is also moving Painter into new 3D territory to accommodate users working in gaming and entertainment. The company has announced a new integration with 3D sculpting app ZBrush, via a ZAppLink plugin. Designed to work with the app’s new Texture Painting feature, you can now export a ZBrush file directly into Painter as a layered 2D image to add realistic and painterly textures while preserving all lighting and effects previously applied in ZBrush. When done, your images are sent back to ZBrush via ZAppLink and re-projected into a 3D model.

Brush and gradient tech

Texture Painting is a new brush category that offers a variety of surface textures to help you fundamentally alter the look of drawings, photos, and paintings by blending new textures into an existing image. Just choose or create a texture with the specific brushes designated for that task.

painter4

Texture painting flattened 3D models.

Speaking of brushes, Painter 17’s new Glazing Brushes offer enhanced control over the opacity of your painting on a per-stroke basis, letting you work with transparent and translucent transitions. These brushes give you stroke-level opacity so each brushstroke is applied independently and each dab of paint builds up smoothly, achieving seamless blending between colors without undesirable colors in overlapping dabs.

painter2

Glazing brushes.

Corel is touting Painter’s new Interactive Gradient tool as a cure for the blank canvas by letting you quickly create and edit gradients with depth and lighting variations. Got a blank canvas? You can start by immediately filling the background with a gradient from Painter’s library of built-in gradients and testing various presets. A new Express Paint button works with the tool to apply a vast assortment of painting styles to gradients.

painter3

Interactive gradients and express painting.

Interface improvements

Painter 17’s new Artists’ Layouts, collections of pre-defined user interface workspaces, are designed for different kinds of workflows, letting you view only the relevant palettes and tools for your piece with a single click. There’s even a minimal interface that frees up space for tablet users. You can also choose the two workspace layouts that you use most often and switch between them to suit the current task or the display mode of your device.

painter6

Palette drawers.

The new version of Painter also debuts Palette Drawers, a workflow enhancement that unclutters your workspace while keeping essential tools available. With it, you can combine panels and custom palettes in the best grouping to suit your project or workflow. When you’re not using a Palette Drawer, you can minimize it with a click.

Enhanced features

In addition to new brushes and gradient tools, Painter 17 updates some existing features. Dab Stencils offer full control over brushstroke opacity based on the active paper, flow map, or texture. Property bars have been enhanced to make it easier to control and adjust brushes.

painter1

Dab stencils.

An improved Dropper tool makes it easier to sample color, featuring new options that let you average the colors of pixels in larger sample areas, from 3×3 to 101×101 pixels. Plus, you can sample a color from the active layer or from all visible layers.

Finally, you can now display the Brush Selector as a panel so that your recently used brushes and variants are immediately available, alongside the entire Brush Library.

painter 5

Brush selector panel showing 2017 brushes and updated property bar.

Corel Painter 17 is available for $430; upgrades are $230. It runs on Mac OS 10.9 or higher.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jackie Dove

Macworld.com
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?