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View Full Version : First attempt in Zbrush (thanks to Meats and Alex!)


Lunatique
04-20-2006, 08:46 AM
I had tried Zbrush once long ago but the UI stopped me cold. Recently Meats and Alex urged me to give it another shot (Alex even gave me some Gnomon DVD's to get me up to speed), and I finally found some freetime to do it a few days ago. This is the result:
http://www.ethereality.info/ethereality_website/3d/grandpa/grandpa.htm

It really is an amazing piece of software, although I wish I could use all the alpha tools in edit mode as well--I hate having to use the projection master. One thing I did notice is that although Zbrush makes highly detailed organic modeling so much more intuitive/faster, I kinda miss the topology planning, the vertices pulling, cutting new edges with funky selection/cutting tools--there's a certain "zen" in 3D modeling that's gone with Zbrush. Guess you can't have your cake and eat it, eh?

TVeyes
04-20-2006, 09:09 PM
That looks very good, especially for a first model in ZBrush :thumbsup: I don't know how much you access the SubDivision levels when modeling but the model has a slightly lumpy look to it, which I would usually associate with modeling at high SubD levels. Modeling general features at a lower subdivision level and viewing the effect by going up a level(s) is key to getting a nice sculptoral feel for the model.

Forget about that feeling of cheating (my word) when modeling in ZBrush. The most important parts of a model are its shape, volume, character and the feeling it conveys. Just model without worrying about topology and when ZBrush 2.5 comes around use the Surface Rig to resurface according to your desired topology. Zbrush 2.5 preview movies (http://pixologic.com/zbrush/media_links/movies2.html) (second movie contains the surface rig). So have your cake, eat it, then have another and a big fat cigar afterwards :)

Think of Zbrush as the missing link of 3D programs ;) It is of course not without failings, and it will never do everything, but many times those failings can be overcome. Deforming with alphas in Edit mode is possible by turning the alpha into a Stencil. Then position/resize/rotate the stencil and/or your model and deform away.

Hope you get hooked by the Z bug. Would love to see more.

comic-craig
04-27-2006, 01:38 AM
Nice work.

Actually- I think that Zbrush is just a helper to everything that has come before. I don't lose the abilty to do anything now that I use Zbrush- if I need hard, mechanical model making- I do that in my program of choice, bring it into Zbrush- detail it- then take the result- pop it into another program.... and so on. I don't need one program to do it all... if I wait for that, I'll wait forever. Since Zbrush can work with many pipelines, and in the end I want to see my work animate and render, I feel like Zbrush is just a sweet program for modelling/texturing chaotic, organic, and interesting art. Zbrush will continue to make some leaps in other areas- which is good- but it doesn't have to... other programs already cover that for me.

Craig

3rd-Axis
04-27-2006, 05:26 AM
...and when ZBrush 2.5 comes around use the Surface Rig to resurface according to your desired topology. Zbrush 2.5 preview movies (http://pixologic.com/zbrush/media_links/movies2.html) (second movie contains the surface rig). So have your cake, eat it, then have another and a big fat cigar afterwards :)

I checked out the video you are linking to and notice it was made in Nov. 2004. What is the holdup?? If they had the ability to do this way back then why has it not been upgraded yet and any word on when the new version will be released?

benclark
04-29-2006, 11:33 AM
there's a certain "zen" in 3D modeling that's gone with Zbrush. Guess you can't have your cake and eat it, eh?

I totally agree with this. I remember when Zbrush2 really started to take off and models first started to appear in the forums - a lot of people dismissed them as if they werent proper models because they thought that Zbrush was just too easy

I have tried using Zspheres and working from there to sculpting but it is nowhere near as fun as creating a base mesh in Maya and tweaking the bejesus out of it

comic-craig
04-29-2006, 11:41 PM
I remember when Zbrush2 really started to take off and models first started to appear in the forums - a lot of people dismissed them as if they werent proper models because they thought that Zbrush was just too easy

Yeah- I remember that too. Some people even compare Zbrush Art with Poser Art- which I feel totally misses the point. When you use Poser- you are using a pre-made model.... meaning you don't really need to understand figure drawing, anatomy, and proportion, etc... I feel that when an artist uses Zbrush the understanding of the program is secondary to the artistic talent. It has been my experience that Zbrush isn't easy for all people- I taught a college class in modelling. Students that had natural drawing ability but little technical experience did well with Zbrush, but poorly with something like NURBS. Other students who knew how to use programs well, but had little sculpture or drawing experienced, failed at Zbrush. In the end- I think its worth striving for a well rounded modelling ability, combining technical with artistic backgrounds.

BTW- Lunatique- amazing portfolio. I think you prove the point that talent is what a Zbrush artist needs.

flingster
05-01-2006, 03:41 PM
very impressive for a first bash...agree with you about ui...i guess you have to get your head around a different approach which is a toughie for me at least. anyways nice result...looking forwards to seeing what you're gonna come up with in 12months time when you're a lot more comfortable with it and its more natural so you're thinking less about the tool and how to do something should be interesting to see.

SanderWit
05-01-2006, 04:00 PM
Indeed impressive for your first work.

Really well done.

PS he really reminds me of Christopher Walken :D I love that guy!

meats
05-03-2006, 08:43 PM
Nice!

Doesn't surprise me one bit you picked it up so quickly :)

Yeah, I definately use both Maya and Zbrush together. I still have to worry about edge loops and all that, and making sure that I am creating a perfect mesh to bring into Zbrush for the good times. I go back and forth so many times between the two programs that I almost forget that they are seperate. The two together are very powerful.

Also check out the different transform modes, inflate (good for muscles and such) and pinch (to get rid of the zbrush puffy look that happens).

I'm stoked you are jumping in!

pnoland
05-03-2006, 09:58 PM
I kinda miss the topology planning, the vertices pulling, cutting new edges with funky selection/cutting tools--there's a certain "zen" in 3D modeling that's gone with Zbrush. Guess you can't have your cake and eat it, eh?

I agree, polygon modeling just kinda gets you in a zone sometimes...but in a good way. :) I find Zbrush modeling to be similar though. Take zsphere's for example, those are addictive to model with and you can still export to your other modeler(s) to adjust topology. Or, when Zbrush 2.5 comes out use the topology tools it's going to have! I'm stoked for that... :D

Your model's looking nice so far, it's hard with zbrush to -not- detail too much so overcoming that early one is great...er, but you're not exaclty a newbie when it comes to graphics so you knew better already ;)

Lunatique
05-04-2006, 03:31 AM
Thanks for the replies!

When I worked on this, I tried to do as much as I could at each level before upping another level for more detail--which is the same mentality as when working with Maya's sub'd modeling in general.

I didn't know there was a cliched puffy look associated with Zbrush, since I'm new to this. I guess it's considered an amateur mistake? :D I'll see what I can do about it when I have free time again. I should probably add some micro details like fine wrinkles and pores..etc too.

Grimfeather
05-05-2006, 01:56 AM
nice piece. i myself am also a beginner and was wondering how much those gnomon tutorial dvds helped, since i was wondering if i should pick 1 up or not

benclark
05-05-2006, 03:07 AM
I cant recommend the Gnomon Zbrush DVDs highly enough

The intro to Zbrush is good but I found a lot of it didnt apply to what I do as I only use about 25% of the program.

The detailing characters DVD shows you how to get down to the tiny little details and is very well done - the guy explains everything and gets amzing results using a very basic tool set. It kinda takes away the intimidating feel of the interface when you see someone get professional results using only a handful of tools

But the Zbrush Pipeline DVD is an absolute must. It saves you hours of trial and error and pissing around in Maya trying to tweak displacements and normal maps

flingster
05-05-2006, 04:00 PM
I cant recommend the Gnomon Zbrush DVDs highly enough

The intro to Zbrush is good but I found a lot of it didnt apply to what I do as I only use about 25% of the program.

The detailing characters DVD shows you how to get down to the tiny little details and is very well done - the guy explains everything and gets amzing results using a very basic tool set. It kinda takes away the intimidating feel of the interface when you see someone get professional results using only a handful of tools

But the Zbrush Pipeline DVD is an absolute must. It saves you hours of trial and error and pissing around in Maya trying to tweak displacements and normal maps

just as a quick comment for those not aware one of the guys responsible for some funky zbrush dvd's mentioned has posted earlier above and is one of the mods on cgtalk's zbrush forum...see MEATS...in short they come highly recommended...and despite his modesty he's a great help and source of info.

mic
05-07-2006, 03:33 PM
nice piece. i myself am also a beginner and was wondering how much those gnomon tutorial dvds helped, since i was wondering if i should pick 1 up or not

I would highly recomend Zack Petroc's DVD. Not only are his anatomy skills insane, he also shows you how to retopologise for animation (without needing to wait for 2.5). So instead of planning the topology before you model, you lay down your topology after you've finalised your forms.

Tantramancer
05-07-2006, 06:32 PM
Fantastic first start in Zbrush! I've been a fan of your 2D work for awhile now and am happy to see you delving into one of my favorite programs.

I finally bought the Gnomon set of DVD's back before Christmas and it's been a big help. Something else you might find useful is a quick 10 minute video tut recently posted on ZBrush Central for download: http://www.zbrushcentral.com/zbc/showthread.php?t=034688

Cesar Dacol Jr. shows a good workflow using masks to avoid the typical 'lumpiness' associated with alot of ZBrush modeling. I've seen the technique presented before in other tutorials but not as clearly I think as this one. This masking technique could help you sharpen up some definition in places and clarify some details.

I'm curious, did you do the base model in ZBrush or import the mesh from another program?

Lunatique
05-08-2006, 04:53 AM
Grimfeather - I think all DVD's contain something you don't know, so they're all helpful in unique ways.

Tantramancer - Thank you for posting the video! I'll definitely check it out.

The base mesh was done in Wings3D and Maya.

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