Zbrush to Maya workflow help

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  10 October 2013
Zbrush to Maya workflow help

I'm a student that's just starting to learn ZBrush. I've mostly worked in Maya for modeling, animation, and rendering. Now that I'm starting to get the hang of using ZBrush, I'm really interested in being able to take my zbrush models and texture them with some of the subsurface shaders and materials available in Maya. But I've been having a really hard time transferring detail onto the models in Maya. I've posted what I've been trying to work on and what I've done, and I would really appreciate it if anyone can help me out with getting better results and let me know how they would do it instead.

This is the zbrush sculpt that I want to try to get into Maya

I've UVed all the parts, here's a look at the face UV:

I heard that what I should do is export my low poly mesh and the displacement maps from Zbrush. So I created displacement maps with this setting- 32bit, Adaptive, DPSubPix-2, flipV. and I set the size to the max at 8192x8192

I then set up plain lambert shaders with the displacement maps plugged in. smooth previewed the geometry to get rid of the hard edges, and then added a default displacement approximation with the U and V Subdivisions at 4. and this was the result:

the render looks ok, but it lack fine detail and has a bunch of weird artifacts and spiky geometry.here's a closeup to further show what I mine:

I notice that in the displacement map that some of the weird geometry stuff happens where there is light gray spots around the eyes and nose

I've also noticed that even with all the same settings, some of the displacement maps have a black background while others have a gray and I don't know what causes the difference:

the ones with the gray background don't behaved correctly like the back background ones:

Any help and suggestions would be appreciate, I'm not set on displacement maps, I don't know if I need a normal maps and how I would make and use them. Anything so I can try to put some nice shaders on this guy.
  10 October 2013
Baking areas with the kind of deep, overlapping folds like you have in the eyes area (two surfaces are very close to each other) won't work very well if the mesh you are baking to is too low poly. The lowpoly object needs to conform more closely to the highpoly one.

You can try not to bake with level 1 active, but from level 2 or 3.

If obvious errors are happening like in the corners of the eyes in your model (white color spots), you can clean that up in Photoshop.

Have you tried baking vector displacements?

The light grey map you have posted seems to be a 16Bit image (32Bit images appear black). There seems to be going on what was going on with the eyes area: this kind of artifacts happen when 2 surfaces are too close to each other.

That said, its a very nice sculpt. I like it!
  10 October 2013
thanks ezekiel66,

This is what my low poly looks like in Maya, do you think this might be too low of a level to work with?

when you say "bake" do you mean the just the writing of the displacement maps or do you mean a different process?
I haven't worked with Vector displacement maps before, I don't know much about them. Do they work better than the normal displacement maps and would they work with a model or character that is to be rigged or animated? and how would you set that up in zbrush and maya?

I checked and rewrote the light gray displacement maps, here's a screencap of my settings but it looks the same.

I opened it up in photoshop too and it says it's 32bit but it looks nothing like the face, coat, and sweater displacement maps. i must of hit something somewhere else to make it look like that but I'm not sure what.
  10 October 2013
There is a maya export settings code years ago, that streamlined the settings (past threads), so I think one switch is not turned on, etc. to give you that odd map. I troubleshot this process for months to be somewhat satisfied. I think you have to cheat the shot to s certain degree; smoothing out in photoshop those hard edges, painting out the spike so its not seen from a distance, etc. If you are going for ultra detail, look up "super bump map" that gives you an awesome texture to pipe into your bump slot in Maya. Xnormal sucked for me, but that is what everyone uses, apparantly.
  10 October 2013
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