How to Enable Stabilization in Krita for Smoother Lines

In Krita, two brush tools with stabilization options exist: the Freehand Brush Tool (FBT) and the Dynamic Brush Tool (DBT). Stabilization is a feature that can help artists with shaky hands draw smoother lines. 

Stabilization is also helpful for drawing complex, long lines on the digital canvas. Stabilization is not enabled by default in these brushes in Krita. 

In this article, I will show you where the stabilization tool is in Krita and how to enable it.

Key Takeaways

  • The stabilizer can be found in the Tool Options docker
  • The Freehand Brush Tool and Dynamic Brush Tool are the only brushes you can use with the stabilization feature
  • To apply stabilization to your brush, choose between None, Basic, Weighted, and Stabilizer options in the brush smoothing settings
  • The stabilization value in Krita is low compared to other drawing apps. Choose at least 10 for the stabilization value

Enabling Stabilizer in Krita

Before applying the smoothing and stabilization option on your brush, you must enable the stabilizer. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Open the Krita application

Starting Krita

Step 2: Start Krita by creating a new canvas or opening a previously created canvas

Default workspaces

Step 3: Open the Workspace settings by clicking the square icon in the top right corner of the application. Set the Workspace to Default option.

Tool options in Krita

Step 4: Click Settings > Dockers > Tool Options. Make sure the Tool options are enabled.

No, stabilization has been enabled in Krita.

How to Use Stabilizer in Krita

After enabling the stabilizer, you only need to apply the smoothing option to your brush. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Select the freehand brush tool by clicking the icon or pressing B on your keyboard

Krita basic brush

Step 2: Choose which brush you want to use. For example, I choose Basic-3 Flow Brush

Step 3: Click the Tool Options menu

Stabilizer in Krita

Step 4: The default brush smoothing setting is Basic. Click the dropdown menu and choose between Basic, Weighted, and Stabilizer options. If you want to control the stabilization, choose the Stabilizer option

Step 5: Do a test drawing to test the current stabilization

Stabilizer Settings

If you’re not satisfied with the current level of stabilization, follow these steps to adjust how much the stabilizer in Krita will correct your line.

Sample count

Sample count is the current strength of the smoothing. 

If you use other drawing apps like CSP or Photoshop, the value of smoothing in Krita is lower than other drawing apps.

This means if you usually use 2-4 for smoothing in CSP, you need to choose at least 10 – 30 for equal smoothing value. 

Increase the sample count to at least 30 to 40 to apply a good level of stabilization to the brush. Choosing below ten won’t do much to the brush stroke.

The simple math is the stabilization value in CSP or Photoshop * 8 = smoothing value in Krita.

Delay

Delay will apply a delay to the brush while you’re drawing. As you try to draw, there will be a delay when you create a curve.

Turning on delay is useful for slow and accurate drawing, like inking your art, especially on webtoons and comics.

Turning off delay will allow you to for a faster line. If you want to do a quick drawing, turn off the Delay option. Delay is not suitable if you want to create a round curve on your line.

Finish Line

The finish line ensures that the brush stroke will be finished. This setting can not be turned off for the obvious reason.

Stabilize sensors

Stabilize sensors will stabilize the movement of the cursor. This means stabilization is applied before the input is processed. 

Ensure this option is turned on so your brush stroke pressure, speed and tilt are smooth and gradual.

If you’ve noticed inconsistencies, particularly with pen pressure, it might be linked to other settings in Krita. Refer to our guide on Fix pen pressure issues in Krita.

Other Brush Smoothing Options in Krita

Besides Stabilizer, there are three options that can be selected for the brush smoothing setting. Here are the differences between them and the effect on the brush stroke:

None

None means Krita will not apply smoothing on your brush stroke. If you want the input from your drawing tablet to be translated directly to the canvas, choose None. 

I only recommend None for professional artists who can control their stylus precisely. If you have a shaky hand, do not choose None since your line will jitter

Basic

Basic is the default option in Krita. The basic option will give slight smoothing to your brush stroke. 

Basic is recommended if you use an older drawing tablet like Wacom Graphire 3 or you’re drawing with a touch pad or mouse instead of a drawing tablet

Besides these cases, you can choose Basic if you only want consistent lines without an excessive smoothing effect. 

Weighted

The weighted option is similar to the stabilizer option. Unlike the complete stabilization of the Stabilizer, Weighted offers more control over specific aspects of your brush strokes:

Weighted brush smoothing in Krita
  • Distance

This isn’t about physical space but rather how the brush waits for input from your tablet before making its first stroke. It sets the initial delay for your brush stroke to appear on the canvas.

  • Stroke Ending

Once you lift your stylus or mouse button, this feature tries to extend your line towards the last spot your cursor was. A heads-up: it always completes in a straight line

  • Smooth Pressure

This is for you if you’ve ever struggled with consistent pressure while drawing. It will smooth out the pressure input, giving your strokes a more even appearance in terms of size.

  • Scalable Distance

Have you ever noticed differences when zooming in or out while drawing? This feature adjusts the stabilization effects based on your zoom level, ensuring consistency.

Weighted option is for those who want a bit more control over their brush strokes. It’s customizable, making it suitable for artists who want a balance between raw input and complete stabilization.

However, if you face lag while using the weighted option, it might be caused by other settings in Krita. Refer to our article on How to Fix Lag in Krita.

Stabilizer

Stabilizer is the tool in Krita that offers full stabilization support for your brush strokes. This is your best pick if you’re seeking a truly smooth line, even when pausing your brush movement. 

Unlike the other settings, the Stabilizer ensures your line remains consistent throughout.

Here’s how it works: The Stabilizer averages all the inputs it gets from your tablet. What sets it apart from options like Weighted is its commitment to completing your line, regardless of how you move your stylus. 

When using this feature, you’ll notice that a circle will appear around your cursor, and your line will seem to follow slightly behind where you’re drawing.

How to Turn off the Stabilizer in Krita?

To turn off the stabilizer for the chosen brush, follow these steps:

Choosing basic brush smoothing to turn off stabilization in Krita
  1. Select the brush you temporarily disable the stabilization
  2. Open the Tool options, and change the brush smoothing from Stabilizer to Basic or None. 

To completely turn off the stabilization in Krita, open Settings > Dockers > Tool Options. Make sure the Tool options are disabled.

To be honest, you don’t need to turn off stabilization in Krita unless it influences you negatively while you’re drawing. 

Stabilization is important because drawing on a pen or graphic tablet is harder than drawing on paper or painting on a canvas.

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Author
Kenny HD
Hi, I’m Kenny. I’m a digital artist who began learning art at the age of 21. I enjoy drawing cartoons and fan art.

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