Check out the new features available in the world’s leading digital sculpting software.

ZBrush at a Glance

ZBrush sets the industry standard for digital sculpting and painting. Its features enable you to use customizable brushes to shape, texture and paint virtual clay in a real-time environment that provides instant feedback. When you use ZBrush you’ll be empowered by the same tools employed by film studios, game developers, toy/collectible makers, jewelry designers, automotive/aviation designers, illustrators, advertisers, scientists and other artists the world over. In fact, we have even received an Academy Award for the technology that powers ZBrush.

In short, ZBrush is an art tool created by artists, for artists. It allows you to create models and illustrations limited only by your imagination, at a speed that allows you to stand out in today’s fast paced industry.

Base Mesh Generation

As with anything else in life, where you can go is usually determined by where you begin. Having a great finished model requires a quality base mesh. ZBrush provides an arsenal of tools to assist with this task, ensuring that no matter what you have in mind, there is a way to get the perfect base to then take to the next level. The best known of these systems are explained here.

Sculptris Pro
Girl in a jacket

Sculptris Pro

Ignore the constraints of polygon distribution and simply – sculpt! Sculptris Pro will dynamically add (tesselate) and remove (decimate) polygons wherever and whenever needed. It does this during your brush stroke in a real-time process called Tessimation. This frees you to focus entirely on the look you’re trying to achieve.

Dynamesh

Dynamesh

DynaMesh is a perfect solution for free-form sculpting because it removes all need for focusing on topological constraints. Change the overall shape of the model by pushing or pulling, adding various pieces of geometry to combine into one, or even remove geometry in a manner similar to what can be done with Boolean operations. Where Sculptris Pro dynamically adjusts the triangles in your mesh as you sculpt, DynaMesh redistributes the model’s polygons as quads on command.

LEARN MORE

Girl in a jacket
ZModeler
Girl in a jacket

ZModeler

While ZBrush is best known for organic sculpting, its hard surface capabilities should not be underestimated. The ZModeler system is designed specifically for low poly modeling with easily accessed and highly intuitive controls for creating holes, adding edge loops, extruding polygons and much more.

LEARN MORE

Live Boolean
Girl in a jacket

Live Boolean

Many models are really nothing more than a set of shapes that combine to form a more detailed shape. Live Boolean takes this concept and runs with it, providing a way to easily add models together, subtract one from another and more. What makes the system in ZBrush unique is that this operation happens in real-time, letting you see exactly what you’re going to get before committing to the actual merger. This provides both exceptional ease of use and unprecedented control.

GET STARTED

ZSpheres
Girl in a jacket

ZSpheres

If you’ve ever added clay to a wire armature then you know exactly how ZSpheres work. Draw a simple skeleton/stick figure and ZBrush will then flesh it out with actual topology.

LEARN MORE

Mannequins
Girl in a jacket

Mannequins

An evolution to ZSpheres is the Mannequin system. With a wide variety of both humanoid and animal figures in the library, Mannequins are an easy starting point as you explore the scene that you wish to create, before even beginning modeling.

ZRemesher
Girl in a jacket

ZRemesher

As you have read through the features listed above you may have found yourself wondering about the kind of topology that is created. The beauty of ZBrush is that you don’t need to worry about that! Feel free to explore and just let your imagination take you where it wants with the knowledge that once you have your design ZBrush can nearly instantly convert its polygons into a usable base mesh with clean edge loops and polygon flow.

Mesh Detailing

Whether created in ZBrush or imported from elsewhere, once you have your base mesh it is time to start detailing. ZBrush features a robust suite of tools to accomplish this. Those listed below are just the tip of the iceberg.

Multi-Resolution Mesh Editing

DynaMesh is a perfect solution for free-form sculpting because it removes all need for focusing on topological constraints. Change the overall shape of the model by pushing or pulling, adding various pieces of geometry to combine into one, or even remove geometry in a manner similar to what can be done with Boolean operations. Where Sculptris Pro dynamically adjusts the triangles in your mesh as you sculpt, DynaMesh redistributes the model’s polygons as quads on command.

USER GUIDE

Girl in a jacket
Sculpting Brushes
Girl in a jacket

Girl in a jacket

Sculpting Brushes

The main workflow for creating with ZBrush is based on a system of brushes which can also be modulated using pen pressure from a graphics tablet. ZBrush will reproduce the natural feeling of a real paint brush or sculpting tool, using the pressure applied to the pen tip to transform your digital stroke in a variety of ways. There are brushes to pinch, move, build up the surface, chisel into it, slice through the model and much more. You can even use other 3D models as brushes, inserting their geometry into your surface.

LEARN MORE

Noisemaker
Girl in a jacket
Girl in a jacket

Noisemaker

In addition to being able to add detail by hand, ZBrush provides a system for procedurally generating surface detail through noise patterns. Choose a detail type, adjust a few simple parameters, then apply that pattern to your model in its entirety or by restricting it to a certain region. You can even combine different noise types to create highly complex effects. The Noise system is ideal for both hard surface work and organic details.

GET STARTED

HD Geometry
Girl in a jacket

HD Geometry

ZBrush is easily able to handle models in the range of 20 million polygons on most computers, and up to 100 million on a high end machine. That is more detail than can be held by an 8K map. But sometimes you want even more, and this is where HD Geometry comes into play. With this feature, ZBrush can work with models of up to 1 billion polygons. Let your imagination run wild!

START LEARNING

3D Painting & Texturing

PolyPaint

Because ZBrush works with tens of millions of polygons in real-time, you can paint directly on the surface of the model without first assigning a texture map or UV’s. This offers significant advantages compared to a standard workflow. The resolution of the texture map does not need to be decided in advance. This is particularly valuable if you find you need more detailing on an area than you thought you would. Instead of repainting a new, larger texture map you can simply transfer the existing surface detail to that larger map without any reworking. You don’t even need to do UV unwrapping before you begin this painting. In fact, thanks to the way that ZBrush can project details (both sculpted and painted) from one model to another you can have a fully painted model before you even have a finalized animation mesh. Instead, you can copy everything to the final base mesh once it has been signed off on.


UV Master

In order create or use a texture map, a model first needs UV’s. These are 2D coordinates that tell all 3D applications how to apply a texture to your model. With most programs, creating those UV’s has been a time consuming challenge that requires a high level of technical expertise and has little room for creativity. With UV Master you are able to create very efficient UV’s for your model – in most cases with a single click. If you need more control over this automatic process there are features that refine where seams will be placed or increase the amount of pixel space given to certain regions of your model. It’s both intuitive and fast, letting you get back to being creative with minimal fuss.

Rendering

Whether you are using ZBrush by itself as an illustration tool or as part of a production pipeline for animation, you will at some point want to show your work to others. ZBrush makes this possible through a powerful rendering system called BPR (Best Preview Render).

Environment Maps Support
Girl in a jacket

Environment Maps

Use your favorite panoramic images as a background in ZBrush and integrate your model into the environment’s lighting and coloring at render time. Whether your image is 8-bit or full HDRI, using it as an environment is one click away.

USER GUIDE

BPR Passes
Girl in a jacket

BPR Passes

ZBrush has a wide variety of filters that can be added to a scene after it has been rendered, changing the way that the image looks without needing to wait for another render. All of these filters can be mixed and matched, instantly adjusting your rendered image without needing to use an external image editor. Adjust sharpness, depth of field, shadow colors and much more.

GET STARTED

BPR Filters
Girl in a jacket

BPR Filters

ZBrush has a wide variety of filters that can be added to a scene after it has been rendered, changing the way that the image looks without needing to wait for another render. All of these filters can be mixed and matched, instantly adjusting your rendered image without needing to use an external image editor. Adjust sharpness, depth of field, shadow colors and much more.

SEE IT IN ACTION

Non-Photoreal Renders
Girl in a jacket

NPR Renders

An evolution of the BPR Filter system, NPR is a suite of special filters designed specifically to make your render look less like a photograph and more like an illustration. With this system your model can look like it was hand-drawn on paper, taken right off the page of a comic, or even appear as a blueprint.

LEARN MORE

Difference Maps

While ZBrush is able to be used from start to finish, in most cases it serves as part of a pipeline. This means that you’ll need to be able to get all of your details out of ZBrush and into another program, such as an animation package. To accomplish this, ZBrush makes it easy to create normal maps and or displacement maps (including 32-bit maps) which can be exported together with your base mesh. For this reason, ZBrush is THE go-to application for detailing models in today’s pipelines.

USER GUIDE

Community

ZBrush is not only a software, it is also one of the largest communities of artists gathered around any 3D software. Join ZBrushCentral.com and become part of the community. See other people’s works, discover new techniques, find inspiration, have your ZBrush usage questions answered, and of course post your own artwork.

Pixologic also organizes community events with its international ZBrush Summit (held annually in Los Angeles), ZBrushMerge in Japan, ZBrushLIVE seminars and user gatherings. Most of the live events are streamed globally and also recorded for later viewing, allowing you to be part of it no matter where you are located.

ZBrush also has its own official Facebook group, YouTube channel, Twitter and Instagram.

System Requirements

ZBrush is available for both Windows and MacOS platforms, and the licensing is dual platform so you can run on both or change between them at any time.

Thanks to its processor-based engine, ZBrush runs well on most modern computers regardless of their graphics cards.

A graphics tablet (such as from Wacom) is strongly recommended. It will give you more control and easier interaction.

Full system requirements can be found here. Be sure to read the entire page, as there is information at the bottom which is meant to help you better understand the reasons for the requirements as written.

INTRODUCING

ZBRUSH 2021 WITH DYNAMICS

ZBrush 2021

ZBrush 2021 introduces a Dynamics system along with Controlled Cloth Sculpting and a revisiting of our Dynamic Subdivision feature. We’ve also added new features to ZModeler, as well as introducing iMage 3D support to ZBrush and giving it the ability to open native-format files created by ZBrushCoreMini.

The ZBrush engine itself has also been enhanced, finding ways to improve performance across the board. You will find that ZBrush 2021 sculpts more fluidly, as well as taking less time to perform other operations such as DynaMesh.

Join us for a demonstration of the new features in ZBrush 2021.

Introducing Dynamics

Enhance your sculpting with a Dynamics system that allows any surface to be contracted, expanded, inflated or draped with gravity. Use masking to pin a portion of the mesh to create a point of interest or use a mask to create a unique interaction that can allow the surface to be rolled on itself. Create realistic cloth folds – even on a low resolution plane. Place your mesh, turn on the collision volume and any desired controls, then watch as ZBrush drapes the cloth mesh over any other visible meshes.

Watch as ZBrush artist Michael Pavlovich demonstrates the dynamic new features in ZBrush 2021.

Controlled Cloth Sculpting

Special brushes have been introduced which use the Dynamics engine to give unique capabilities for interacting with the cloth surface. As examples, you can choose where folds will lay or simply grab the geometry to move it freely in the work space and create folds in real-time. The ClothTwister brush simulates twisted cloth. ClothWind allows directional movement. ClothPinchTrails will create a seam with pinched cloth wherever your brush stroke takes place on the surface.

Dynamic Subdiv Revisited

Dynamic Subdiv provides a working preview of your subdivision levels without actually increasing the base polygon count. This feature is now taken a step further by allowing you to add an adjustable thickness to any single piece of planar geometry.

A piece of geometry can also be added to each polygon as a completely interactive instance. Select from the library of presets to make a surface look like canvas or denim jeans. Even select a piece of armor to create repeatable chainmail.

Snapshot3d Additions

PolyGrouping, Color, and Segments

SnapShot3D will now transfer PolyGroups and color from the original texture to the generated mesh. This functionality allows for easy isolation of parts. When generating silhouettes of garments, color can be applied to the areas where holes would be needed to create an outfit. These areas can then quickly be hidden and deleted for processing with Dynamics to generate clothing.

Segments can now also be added to the SnapShot3D mesh by using the SpotLight dial.

Performance

Even more performance enhancements have now been added to ZBrush. We revisited the systems behind the sculpting brushes along with many other popular features. Speed has increased across all sectors, including faster response time with high polygon models, increased DynaMesh speed and much more. In addition, a new Optimal option for smart management of multithreading will always maintain the right amount of threads ZBrush needs with your system for the best performance.

ZModeler Upgraded

New functions have been added to the already powerful ZModeler brush system.

Extrude Edge

It’s never been easier to build a plane up into what you imagine or construct a completely new piece of geometry that fits into an existing sculpt. The new Edge Extrude feature gives you the ability to build with one edge, multiple edges, complete edge loops and/or polyloops — with interactive edge snapping. Not only can you extrude an edge to snap to the adjacent face but you can enable SnapToSurface to allow the new edges to snap to an underlying surface.

Equidistant Inset

With Equidistant Inset you can inset a single polygon or region of polygons and all newly created topology will be equidistant from the existing topology. The result is a perfect new set of polygons.

A closer look

Click on the image below to see the models underlying the geometry.

Nanomesh Modifications

Continuing to expand on the already powerful instancing system of NanoMesh, ZBrush 2021 now gives you the ability to edit the instance mesh while it is in place within the scene. Combining Split Screen with NanoMesh, this throws wide open your ability to create and adjust without adding unwieldy numbers of polygons.

iMage3D GIF and PNG Formats

The iMage 3D format provides a unique way to share both an image of your work and the 3D model itself with others, all in a single GIF or PNG file. This file can be posted on any website where it will appear as a regular 2D image and once opened in ZBrush the complete model with all its SubTools is ready to edit.

Release Notes

Variable Cursor Size adjustment

File extensions Collada (DAE) and Alembic (ABC) import/export capabilities

ZModeler Set Camera Perpendicular option has been added to the Polygon options

ZModeler additions to temporary white polygroup painting.
(While holding the ALT key in polygon mode of ZModeler)

File extensions Collada (DAE) ,Alembic (ABC) and 3MF import/export capabilities

An Optimal performance enhancement has been added

Gizmo precision movement addition

GoZ update for 3DSMAX 2021

Several Macro additions

Spotlight Snapshot 3D now will process color as Polygrouping

Stroke additions:

– Jitter feature allows an alpha to bounce along a stroke path.
– Imperfection feature applies a surface noise to the stroke.

Fill out my online form.