Grunge Photoshop Brushes Set


In our previous releases we focused on icons and WordPress-themes; however, there is a variety of further tools graphic designers need on a regular basis. For instance, Photoshop brushes. We have mentioned already that grunge is becoming a trend1, so a set of grungy Photoshop brushes sounded like a good idea. You can find dozens of our further releases in our section Freebies2.

Every release helps to make the Web a nicer place which is why we support designers and challenge them to release something for free in order to be featured on Smashing Magazine. And the results are quite often pretty impressive.

Grunge Photoshop Brushes3

Today we are glad to release Smashing Photoshop Brushes — a free set of 74 grungy Photoshop brushes in resolution 69 — 2463px. The set is compatible with Adobe Photoshop 7.0, CS, CS2 and CS3 (you can use it in Photoshop Elements, Paint Shop Pro, GIMP and Paint.NET too). The brushes were designed by Silvia Bukovac Gasevic, the creative mind behind graphics-illustrations.com84, especially for Smashing Magazine and its readers.

Download the set for free!

You can use the set for all your projects for free and without any restrictions. However, it’s forbidden to sell them — please link to this article if you would like to spread the word.


Motivation behind the design

As usual, here are some insights from the designer herself:

“Originally conceived to be nothing but a fine retouching tool, Photoshop brushes evolved to be “point and click shape placing tool” which became increasingly popular among professionals and Photoshop enthusiast alike.

There are many categories of Photoshop users who use Photoshop brushes in their projects. Scrapbookers or professional photographers who use them to decorate photo albums. Many designers amateurs use them to design their own stuff whether it be T-Shirts, mugs, badges or web designs. Professional designers buy commercially licensed Photoshop brushes and use them regularly for they projects.

I like to play with different styles when creating Photoshop brushes. Inspiration for new shapes can be found just about anywhere. Once, with a little help from my scanner, I made brushes out of the items that were laying on my working desk, including my mobile phone. Today, we live in the era of grunge shapes and swirls which, somehow, suits me fine and as a professional designer I always wanted to have some kind of “swiss knife” brushes set. One set to serve them all. (Kind of resembles “One ring to rule them all” but that’s just me being a Tolkien fan.) So, making a free brush set for Smashing Magazine readers turned out to be a great chance to do it.

What I had in mind was to create a brushes set that would fully cover the needs for one standard blog (or other graphic design projects) with grunge-swirls look.

So here they are, 74 brushes of 69 — 2463 px resolution, feel free to use them in all your commercial or non-commercial projects with no restrictions at all. Set is compatible with Adobe Photoshop 7.0, CS, CS2 and CS3 (you can use it in Photoshop Elements, Paint Shop Pro, GIMP and Paint.NET too).

More of my work can be seen on my blog at graphics-illustrations.com84.

Last but not least…

We are regularly looking for creative designers and artists. You may not know it yet, but we might feature you in one of our upcoming posts.

If you would like to release a high-quality free font, a WordPress-theme, Photoshop brushes, a Drupal theme, some wallpapers or an icon-set please contact us9 — we would like to support you (both financially and with the broad coverage on Smashing Magazine).


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The Smashing team loves high-quality content and cares about the little details. Through our online articles, Smashing Books, eBooks as well as Smashing Conferences, we are committed to stimulating creativity and strengthening the web design community’s creative forces.

  1. 1

    First to reply cool update!

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  3. 3

    d’oh second!… and third

  4. 4

    You folks are just in time! I was searching for something like this and thought I’d better search smashing magazine for articles with brushes – but there was no need!

  5. 5

    nice set of brushes! thanks…

  6. 6

    Another great set. These will come in useful for my new blog design! Thanks!

  7. 7

    Wait, what? Grunge is becoming a trend? Grunge is on it’s way out. It’s been in for the last 2 years. Don’t get me wrong, love the style, but I say download and use them now, Grunge is about to go the way of bellbottoms.

  8. 8

    Very nice set, it could be very useful!
    Thanks for sharing SM. :)

    Geek and Hype

  9. 9

    Cool brushes!

    BTW: Keep posting this often!! My twitter is full of Smashmagazine and that’s great!!

  10. 10

    SM is amazing. Who agrees?

  11. 11

    I do!! Great brush set, tough.

  12. 12

    nice guys

  13. 13

    Ty: “Wait, what? Grunge is becoming a trend? Grunge is on it’s way out. It’s been in for the last 2 years. Don’t get me wrong, love the style, but I say download and use them now, Grunge is about to go the way of bellbottoms.”

    So true. Especially this “shield with wings and grungy shit”-motif is so outdated and is just looking plain ugly. As if it was created by a robot.
    Absolutely not contemporary.

  14. 14

    I seriously don’t get the rush to post first…. or second… seriously, wtf?

  15. 15

    The first and second are just immature kids in the bloggosphere. I used to get irritated but it’s a unsolvable problem to make people smarter

  16. 16

    Nice set but I’m having trouble downloading. When I click, it leads to a page with gibberish text. Is there any way to fix this? I’m using FF 2.0 with Windows XP. Same thing happens on Vista.

  17. 17

    Ryan: congrats, you contributed absolutely nothing worthwhile in the comments section, you should be proud.

    As for myself, these brushes look like they will come in handy with collage designs, thanks for the freebie.

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    Max | Design Shard

    August 12, 2008 5:51 pm

    The Grunge hearts look really cool, could be very useful for some designs

    Thanks Max

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    Nice set! I have some cool Illustrator brushes on my site at they can easily be converted to Photoshop brushes if you need to.

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    Thank you Silvia Bukovac Gasevic and thank you Smashing!

    I have a softspot for Photoshop brushes.

  21. 21

    Great set, if you are looking for some more grunge brushes, check out

    This is one of my personal favorite packs, very hi-res.

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    the gibberish text would be your browser trying to display the abr file rather than download it. right click it and ‘save as’.
    either you have somehow added this as a mime type or not – i can’t remember which.

  26. 26

    F##, man, grunge style used to be a trend, and nows it’s almost kitsh

  27. 27

    Let’s keep the freebries coming! :)
    I just browsed through the freebies, and found… Not so much I could use.
    I love the desktop calendars and I try to join as often as possible. I’m inspired by the icons but rarely can I use them… I don’t need wordpress themes, as I don’t have a wordpress-website.
    Therefor I cheered, when I saw this article.

    Only… Why the restictions??
    When I see wonderfull photoshop brushes and custom shapes and so on I emidiatly download them and keep them in a library. This way I don’t forget where I saw them when someday I need to use them. But with all these restictions my creativity is dying!

    I can’t efford to download this freebie- ’cause I know I would violate the copyright if I did.

    So pardon my french: Thanks for nothing…(?)

    Or let me ask another question- how do other handle that issue?
    -remebering where the great tools are or
    -remembering who to credit and ask permission?

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    “So here they are, 74 brushes of 69 — 2463 px resolution, feel free to use them in all your commercial or non-commercial projects with no restrictions at all.”


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    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    August 13, 2008 12:57 am

    @Sandie Sørensen (#27): there are no restrictions whatsoever. I am not sure what you mean…

    @mick (28): the brushes are absolutely free to use, what’s the problem?

  30. 31

    A nice brush set, thanks Silvia!

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    Why always you say “first” “first” ?? It’s ugly.

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    @Sandie Sørensen (#27) – There are no copyright laws on the brush sets. You can use them for whatever you like.

    If you want to sell or spread the set of grunge brushes in any way, contact smashing magazine and/or the author for more information.

    – To generally memorize where tools are, I bookmark the sites where Ive got them from. (Windows: ctr D Mac: cmd: D in your browser of choice / Firefox)

    – When asking for permission to use a brush set or anything art alike that someone has created, I am however not sure how the copyrights are layed out I generally look for a name. Who designed the thing. Does he have a Website? Where do I find his E-Mail. I write him an Email and get communicative. The artist will reply in most cases because you are interested on his art and its rights.

    If you didnt understand anything else Sandie, just let me/us know.



  33. 34

    Its really very nice brush set, Thanks! would be helpful in designing.

  34. 35

    This is really useful, thanks !

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    Is such a style called Grunge ? I didn’t know that . But I think its a wrong description for this kind of style. grunge was a music style in the early 90s and has nothing to do with this “fashion-victim” style which stands for commericalism. The music-Grunge never did this

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    download ah..

  38. 39

    Grunge….mmm, who named this distorted style anyway…. I reckon she’s a goner!

  39. 40

    Well, I love it. I use it to produce fanart, and it suits my needs perfectly. I am sure everyone can find something for themselves in the resources provided by Smashing Magazine.

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    Just curious – for those of you mentioning that the grunge style is going out….any clues as to what the new trend is/will be?

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    Grunge was in two years ago and was cheesy and already out less than a year ago.
    This style is typical and overdone.

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    Real Design Team

    August 15, 2008 6:01 am

    It’s very nice bruses. I like very much..

  43. 44

    Well, i just love this website..

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    Mike the Chicago Designer

    August 22, 2008 10:18 am

    The style is (drum roll please…………………)

    Tinting or Color treatments.

    For an excellent example look at

    (Full disclosure: I had a little to do with the design, but I am not bias.)

  45. 46

    Amazes me the people who gripe about something when it’s free! If you don’t like it, or it doesnt suit your tastes- move on and leave it alone…sheesh!

    I love anything grunge and appreciate the time it takes to create things for our use. Thank you for sharing with us!!!

  46. 47

    wtf, why is everyone hating something that looks really cool to some people :/
    if you dont like it, go back to your prep ass shit which is WAYYY over done

  47. 48

    Hi there… can use these to enhance my stock illustration?

  48. 49

    Superb, as always! Many thanks. :)

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    Thanks. Nice one.

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    I’m using GIMP… How do I install & use new brushes?


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  52. 53

    Thank you so much!!!!

  53. 54

    I have downloaded the brushed to my desktop and have opened them into photoshop but they dont appear in the brushes tablet, any suggestions?

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    gamda gedan ya man :)

  55. 56

    Thanks a lot for this! Just what I was looking for!

  56. 57

    i just love all of dis there cool

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    I downloaded, but can’t find them in PSE7. where did they go?

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    Is it just me, but I am get a 403 Forbidden error when trying to download from the link.

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    yup link is broken for me as well :(. i’m getting a not found, not a forbidden, though

  60. 61

    Reupload the file.

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    Christiane Rosenberger

    January 21, 2010 10:50 am

    Thank you guys, the link is now available again :-)

  63. 64

    Nice brush! i like it!

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    Awesome set of brushes. I used them a couple of times for several of my sites’ layouts. It’s now used in the current design of and of course I gave credit in the colophon page :] Thanks so much you guys!

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    thank you very much

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    Personally I don’t get what the big deal is with the whole ‘in’ thing regarding the style of it. Who gives a flying f**k? It appeals to some people, so be it, it doesn’t to others, no biggie, there’s others they can find without bitching about how ‘in’ or ‘out’ something is (lol…love ‘kitsch’…this isn’t a frikkin fashion blog). I think the brushes are great, and it’s always nice to get a freebie. Why so many people moan about a freebie, lord knows. It’s free…shuddup and stop moaning.

  67. 68

    thanks a lot good brushes!!!

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    thanks for these… i hope we’ll still see this in the future

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    thank you for these great brushes!

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    Thank you!

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    thank you

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    Thank you for sharing!


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