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Can't see the cursor or is it looking odd?

If you can't see it. many times the brush size is too small. Click on the brush preset picker located at the left of the Options bar and slide the Master Diameter slider bar to the right for a larger brush size.

• If your brush shows a crosshair instead of the brush size then try taking Caps Lock off.

• It you see an icon or a crosshair as your brush and you want the brush to reveal only the size of the brush, go to Preferences in Photoshop >Preferences> Display and Cursors and change the painting cursor to Brush Size. Now when you want a crosshair for a brush all you need to do is hold down the Shift key or Caps Lock.

• While painting always note the opacity in the Option palette to avert mistakes. A shortcut is to press a number key to change the setting of the Opacity, Pressure or Exposure slider bar in 10 percent increments.

• If your brush has a feathery outline or border and you want a finer edge while painting, you will neeed to change the Hardness of the brush. Click on the brush preset picker located at the left of the Options bar and slide the Hardness slider bar to the right for a harder edge for the brush. Another area to check is the Brushes palette for different brush tips and presets that are putting the accent on the effects.

• Another option when a tool is misbehaving is to reset the tool. Click on the brush picker (not the brush preset picker) located at the far left of the Options bar and look at the top right for the small circle with a right arrow in it. Click on it, and choose Reset Tool.

• Read more tool troubleshooting help here and here.

• If the above fails, then Trash your preferences. Consult your manual on a step-by-step procedure.