View Full Version : Some new Heads... digging Zbrush.

10 October 2004, 09:45 PM
Hi all..

So I'm on the bandwagon finally... after hanging out over the last couple months with Meats, how could I not... Zbrush is amazing. These are my first four things made in Zbrush, after watching Meats' DVD lectures... All made 100% in Zbrush from Zspheres and rendered in Maya... no textures or anything, and definitely a little lumpy, but they all took less than 4 hours a piece! So much for modeling in Maya... I'm finally excited about modeling again.

head #1:
head #2:
head #3:
head #4:


10 October 2004, 09:51 PM
Here's another guy I made last night... same procedure as the others. Modeled from Zsphere's, exported low-res poly to Maya with displacement, rendered in Maya. Having a lot of fun. I may work more with this guy, but somehow I doubt it... will probably just move on and make another one. Its just so cool to be able to 'sketch' in 3D. :)



10 October 2004, 05:13 AM
Some very cool stuff happening there! I especially like heads #3 and #5. Presumably you have used Mental Ray for that last render, as it looks very smooth, with none of the telltale Zbrush "fine grid" look. Since I am a real noob in MR, could you give any workflow tips going from ZB to Maya.

Also, I would love to see the base mesh of any of these guys. Are you finding that doing the base modeling in Zbrush using zspheres is allowing for decent topology and edge loops, or are you tweaking in Maya and then taking this back to ZB for detailing?


10 October 2004, 09:24 PM
looks great, I'm diggin Zb as well

10 October 2004, 09:58 PM
Actually, that last one is rendered with the Maya renderer...

For going from Zbrush to Maya, I decide which subDiv level I want to send to Maya (enuf to be able to rig the head effectively with wrap deformers)... usually under 7k polys for a head. Then I delete the lower levels and export an obj. Then check the UVs in Zbrush and make a displacement that I save out as a tif. If you do render with Mental Ray, you'll need to import the greyscale tif and convert it to rgb.

In Maya, I import the geo, add the displacement to a Blinn shader, turn off wrapU&V, and flip the displacement in V (-1). Also need to set the Alpha Gain and Alpha Offset values so I get the right amount of displacement... If your alpha gain is 1, the alpha offset should be -.5. If your alpha gain is .9, the alpha offset should be -.45, etc.

I then turn the poly into a subD and turn off feature displacement. Render times are pretty quick... under a minute.

As far as UVs and topology goes for production concerns, Zbrush is not the best solution.. better to resolve those things in your native 3D app. But for what I'm currently doing (making heads to create still images), the topology and UVs are fine.


11 November 2004, 06:19 AM

You mentioned you used DVD's from Meats. Are they available now? If not when? I checked you site and didn't find and mention of them.


11 November 2004, 12:51 PM
heh heh mad skillz...very impressive stuff... and some unusual designs you got there.

btw..are meats dvd lectures available for buy somewhere?

11 November 2004, 05:54 PM
They will be released in about a month. Meats has worked very hard over the past couple months to get his Zbrush lectures together. He has created an Intro DVD (6 hours), a pipeline DVD, and Zack Petroc (model supervisor, World of Tomorrow) has created an amazing DVD on creating a full human figure using Maya & Zbrush. These will definitely help people out... and Zack's DVD will help anyone out, regardless of their knowledge of Zbrush, as the focus of his lecture is the forms of the human body. Zack is one talented guy when it comes to figurative digital sculpting.


11 November 2004, 03:53 AM
Thanks for the Maya tips Alex ! I had not realised how well subd's work for zbrush displacements until now, as I had been working in polys up till now. Am quite impressed at the rendering speed for displaced subd's as you have mentioned. Now to see how well I can rig a character using subd's and zb displacements.

Very exciting to hear about the upcoming ZB dvd's ...can't wait!

11 November 2004, 03:31 PM
hey alex

great work man! i really like head 3


11 November 2004, 11:05 PM
Hey Alex -

Really liking the latest head (it has been a few days since you posted this, you probably have done a bunch more knowing you..). It's cool to see that you are getting such quality out of the standard Maya renderer. When I started with Zbrush, I had a few people stray me away from using it at all, so I've done all my tests with Mental Ray. I'll have to look into it as an alternative. Mental Ray probably is still superior..well, not probably....:)

11 November 2004, 07:42 PM
It's amazing to see your progress between the 1st and the last one !

Great work ! I like your style alot ! :thumbsup:

11 November 2004, 07:51 PM
Hi Alex; your last two heads are awesome, actually I like them all!
Can't wait to see some texturing on your models. You are a really
talented modeler!
Good luck!

11 November 2004, 10:05 AM
Hi Alex,

Great to see talented people like yourself making the move to ZBrush and producing fantastic results so soon.

For those that are interested, I'm currently working on a new tutorial focussing on character detailing using Projection Master, the Stencil Tool and Masks.

See the link to my previous tutorial:


11 November 2004, 05:27 PM
hey a.alvarez. awesome work!!! u inspire me to go even deeper in the 'Z' world! hehe :thumbsup:
hey paul, awesomne tut btw!! couldent try it yet but i took a peek at it and it looks really great and helpfull!!

11 November 2004, 08:29 PM
Amazing work, well all the pics done with Z-brush are amazing, I'm gonna try it very quickly

11 November 2004, 06:57 PM
Great start Alex! And great to meet you in the first ZBrush meeting at Gnomon. I hope to speak with you again in the next meeting and I hope to see more of your ZBrush works soon.

Keep up the good work :thumbsup:


11 November 2004, 08:25 PM
Hey cool to see some stuff from you Alex! It seems that ZBrush is catching on everywhere :D And damn you're lucky to have Meats brain right there to pick whenever you want!

I like your heads, especially head #2, which looks really promising. Some more wicked details on that one and it'll be a killer.

I bet Meats DVDs are going to be awesome too. I think it's great that Gnomon have embraced ZBrush now.

11 November 2004, 08:26 AM
Thanks everyone... :)

Antropus: Was nice to meet you too! btw, really like the Picasso head! nice render.
Leigh: Yep, Gnomon is on the bus... yeah, having Meats around is great.

Bummer I haven't been able to touch Zbrush for over a week, but here's another head started yesterday and finished this evening. As the others, its lacking in details... as thats the stuff that takes more time and right now I'm having fun just playing around. After a few hours I start to get bored with a design and want to move on to another one. Although I think its time I move on from busts to a torso. :)

head #6:


Frenchy Pilou
11 November 2004, 12:35 AM
...creature :thumbsup:

11 November 2004, 01:19 AM
ohhh,freaky. cool

11 November 2004, 04:54 PM
:bounce: Can't wait for the DVDs! :bounce:

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