View Full Version : Zbrush First workflow

10 October 2009, 03:52 AM
I'm interested in the 'zbrush first' type workflow -- I'd like to start a model in zbrush, sculpt and poly-paint freely without technical constraints. Only after the piece is finished, do I want to think of the technical details (re-topo, uv's). The problem is I don't know how this works in ZBrush or if it is truly a practical option? It seems the typical workflow is to start in another app (max, maya, etc) and then export to zbrush. I'd rather start and finish the model in zbrush and only export out when I'm ready to render. Am I high?

What I don't understand most is the UV mapping part - when and how do you uv map? In what app do you uv map (zbrush or primary 3d app)?

If anybody could outline the process for what I'm trying to achieve I would be extremely grateful!

Sorry for the ignorant question, but I want to understand what's required before investing in the software.

Thanks in advance for any comments you may have.



10 October 2009, 04:58 AM
This is the workflow I've been using for great...

Create base mesh in Zbrush using Zspheres... export Obj

Import Obj into Cinema4d/Bodypaint... generate UV's...export Obj

Import Obj into Zbrush... subdivide, sculpt and go nuts... generate displacement map...

Apply dp map to model in C4d.

10 October 2009, 01:51 PM

Thanks so much for your input!

In the workflow you described, could you complete the model first - all modeling and painting, before exporting out to C4D? I understand that I would probably need to re-topo first to export out the base mesh, but I'd rather not be constrained by the base mesh that early in the process.

Again, if the way I'm trying to approach this is going to cause me more problems than it's worth, I'd like to know that as well.

Thanks again for your input - much appreciated!


11 November 2009, 04:53 PM
hey marco,

there's no point in laying out uvs before you retop your sculpt. the uvs are based on the mesh, so if you retop, you also have to re layout the uvs.
after doing the retop, you can export and layout the uvs in headus uv, or any capable 3d package. then go back into zbrush and apply the uvs to your tool.
or if you're going to poly paint in zbrush and won't need a uv layout that you can work on in photoshop, you can always just use the automatic uv layout in zbrush and skip the whole process.. it depends on what you'll need to do with the model later.

11 November 2009, 04:34 PM

Thanks for the advice. That sounds right on target for what I'm thinking. I'm mostly interested in illustration, so I think I can skip some of the steps others might use.
I appreciate your input.

Thanks again,


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