ZBrush Archives

How to install GoZ in DAZ Studio (step by step)

A viewer asked me recently how to get the ZBrush to DAZ Studio connection going step. I’ve explained how to use GoZ in this article, but I’ve not mentioned the pitfalls of the installation process. I thought I’d put this quick article together with screenshots and all. Prepare Install Manager First of all close DAZ …

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ZBrush Basics Cheat Sheet

I just watched the above excellent one hour tutorial by Henning and Morten from FlippedNormals. It’s a great “getting (back) into ZBrush” tutorial that covers everything I keep forgetting when I give ZBrush a rest for longer than 6 months. Which is essentially every time I use it. While watching I took some notes so …

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Editing DAZ clothing using a reference figure in ZBrush

Even though I own it, I know very little about ZBrush. It may forever remain a mystery for me – like driving a car or getting excited about Team Sports. It’s just… not for me. Be that as it may, I’ve often wondered how clothing manufacturers use a character as a reference to make or update clothing geometry in ZBrush. Perhaps a jacket that doesn’t quite fit, or some boots that need a quick adjustment.

The challenge here is that both the character and the clothing need to be imported into ZBrush, and we need to be able to adjust the clothing only, while seeing the character in the background as a reference so we can work around it.

While the art of sculpting in ZBrush entirely eludes me, I believe I have finally understood the overall workflow. Before I forget it again, I thought I’d share it with you and my future self. Let’s see how we can transfer a clothed Genesis 3 figure from DAZ Studio 4.11 into ZBrush 2019.1, make adjustments on an item, and then bring it all back with a few clicks.

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Creating ZBrush Morphs for DAZ Studio without GoZ

In this episode I’ll show you how to create a morph for an item in DAZ Studio using ZBrush, without using the GoZ bridge. It works by exporting your object in OBJ format from DAZ Studio, importing and changing its shape in ZBrush (or any other 3D modelling app for that amtter), then re-importing the …

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How to create DAZ Studio Morphs with ZBrush

In this episode I’ll show you how to create morphs for DAZ Studio using ZBrush, thanks to a free plugin called GoZ for DAZ Studio (it’s like a ZBrush Bridge). I’ll also explain the prep-work necessary for GoZ to work properly and how to install it. For Allan. https://www.versluis.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/1901-DAZ-to-ZBrush.mp3 Podcast: Download (Duration: 12:48 — 11.7MB)

How to apply textures in ZBrush

I was trying to import a texture into ZBrush from an object I had created and UV mapped in Blender. The above shows an example of such an object, looking all nice and dandy in Blender.

However, when I imported it into ZBrush (after figuring out how to do that), I was shocked to see how ZBrush displayed my texture. Take a look:

That’s neither funny nor necessary. I’ve tested the same principle in DAZ Studio, Carrara and Poser and they all played ball, displaying the texture without a hitch. Only Hexagon wanted the texture flipped vertically, but – just like Carrara – offered handy tick boxes as to which direction an imported texture needed to be mirrored.

Zbrush also has such an option, but it’s not next to where you select the texture.

In this article I’ll show you how to import and apply a texture in ZBrush, to an object that has been created and UV mapped in another application. Let’s do this step by step:

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How to add thickness in ZBrush using Panel Loops

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 12.54.35

I have previously shown you how to add thickness to an object using the ZBrush Move Tool. While that method may have had its uses in the past, it is hugely cumbersome and can’t really be used on a complex object.

So today I’ve learnt how to achieve the same thing using something called Panel Loops. It a nutshell, with this feature ZBrush splits the whole model into separate little objects, adds thickness to them and merges if all back together again. It even adds Polygroups for all those little bits too.

Panel Loops can be used to create the backside of an otherwise single sided object (for example, a dress exported from Marvelous Designer).

Let me show you how to use it briefly.

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How to add thickness to an object in ZBrush using the Move Tool

While other 3D apps usually have an option to bring thickness to an otherwise flat object, ZBrush does not. Hurra.

Here’s an extremely fiddly and imprecise way to add thickness to a flat object (such as a 2D plane) using a Morph Target trick I’ve learnt from BadKing the other day.

First, bring in a flat object into your otherwise empty document. The Plane_3D primitive will suffice nicely for this demonstration. Drag it out, enter Edit mode and turn this thing into a PolyMesh 3D.

Turn the object on its side and hit Move (right next to the default Draw).

If you held down SHIFT while looking at the plane from its side, you’ll notice that you don’t see your object anymore – only the Move Tool. That’s just fine. It’s all part of the “fun” of using ZBrush. Have you used the Move Tool before? It takes a bit of getting used to. But I digress…

Click on the little blue circle on the right and you’ll see the tool change, expanding itself to the right. That’s excellent because we’ll move our invisible plane ever so slightly to the right in just a moment.

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 17.31.33

So in my screenshot, where the green line is, that’s the side of my plane. Feel free to turn the view around a little so we reveal the plane like so:

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 17.35.15

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How to cut holes in ZBrush

Screen Shot 2016-04-27 at 10.52.43

Sometimes we need to cut holes into an object. Every other 3D app under the sun would call this a Boolean Operation – except for ZBrush of course, where this problem is solved with a (totally unintuitive) DynaMesh trick.

While the ZBrush manual mentions that this is easily achieved, they’ve missed out the part on how to actually do it.

Let me explain that here before I forget (which is probably tomorrow).

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How to select multiple parts of a brush in ZBrush

Several brushes in ZBrush insert 3D meshes into your object rather than sculpting it. Some of the default brushes are named IMM in the brush menu, but you can get dozens of others from sites like BadKing.com.au (check it out – they’re phenomenal). IMM stands for Insert Multi Mesh, and such brushes can be created …

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How to create seamless texture tiles in ZBrush using the elusive Tilde Key

There is a convenient way to create seamless texture tiles in ZBrush using the oft neglected 2.5D functionality. Like many things in ZBrush, it’s extremely easy – if you know how to do it. The principle is just like the Photoshop Offset filter. Before we start, it’s probably a good idea to resize the current …

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How to remove polygons from your model in ZBrush

In Hexagon you can simply select a face (polygon) and hit the delete key, but things are slightly more complicated in ZBrush. Here’s how to remove one or several faces of your 3D object in ZBrush. First, select the desired polygons. In my example above it’s the flat side of a cylinder, so I’m rotating …

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Getting started with the ZModeler in ZBrush

The ZModeler is is a new feature in ZBrush 4R7. With this new gadget we can perform polygonal vertex modelling, something that was not possible before the introduction of this brush. The term “brush” is a tad of an understatement if you ask me: this “minor addition” gives ZBrush abilities that are worth about $1600, which is what …

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Painting textures with 2D tools using ZAppLink in ZBrush

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 12.28.24ZAppLink is a ZBrush feature that allows you to use 2D painting tools to paint the texture on a 3D object, as it’s seen in the workspace. Rather than exporting, editing and re-importing textures, drawing on awkwardly layed out UVs, or solely relying on 3D painting tools, you can simply frame your object and draw on it – with anything that supports the PSD file format.

This is different to using GoZ which relies on 3D features of a painting app (such as Photoshop Extended – which I don’t have). ZAppLink allows you to use other 2D tools in your pipeline such as SketchBook Pro, Manga Studio, Corel Painter and many others.

Here’s a quick guide on how to use ZAppLink in ZBrush 4R6.

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Creating Texture Maps in ZBrush

Import the OBJ file you’d like to create a texture for under Tool – Import. Drag it into the workspace while holding shift, then hit Edit to enter 3D mode. Head over to Tool – Geometry and turn the subdivision level to 1. Texture maps should be created at the lowest subdivision level, even though your ZBrush …

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How to use GoZ in ZBrush

GoZ (pronounced Go-Zeeh) is a bridge between ZBrush and other applications. This allows for easy mesh and texture sharing between ZBrush and Sculptris, Photoshop, Poser, Carrara, DAZ Studio and many others. But how do we use it? Where is that magic button? And how do we select the target app? All will be revealed in this article. Under …

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How to fix “insufficient disk space” error for GoZ in ZBrush

I’ve encountered a problem last year that every time I tried to send something from ZBrush to another application via the GoZ plugin, my Mac gave an error message telling me I had “insufficient disk space”. With over 100GB left on my main drive this is a plain lie. Turns out that there’s a permissions problem …

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Changing the colours of the Popup Help in ZBrush

zbrush-popup

ZBrush doesn’t have a User Manual in PDF form you can download and curl up with. Instead, it has an online version over here.

ZBrush also encourages us to use the integrated help which explains every feature of the app. All we have to do is press CTRL / CMD while hovering over an item in its extensive menu.

Trouble is, when I do this on my Mac, I can barely read anything – if at all. You’d expect that an $800 piece of software would at least WORK out of the box without extensive digging into how to make the friggin help show up. But of course that’s not how it works with ZBrush.

Lucky for us the entire UI is customisable (albeit a tad difficult to understand how), and thanks to MentalFrog’s suggestion I could tweak my ZBrush popup help from “totally irrelevant” to “actually usable”. Let me show you how.

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Navigating 3D Space in ZBrush

Much like a drawing programme, it is more or less required to use a Wacom tablet with ZBrush. Without one it doesn’t really make much sense. Like the rest of this weird piece of software, navigating around an object in 3D is completely different than in any other application. My Wacom Intuos 4 is setup …

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How to use Spotlight in ZBrush

Cylinder with PatternI’ve gotten over the culture shock of the ZBRush Interface. It grows on you after a while. Or so I keep telling myself.

The emphasis in ZBrush is about sculpting 3D models – something I’m not really into. I want to use ZBrush as a texturing tool and paint existing 3D objects, so I jumped right ahead and took a good look at something called Spotlight. This is ZBrush’s image editing and painting feature.

Everything needs some funky name, usually beginning or containing the letter Z. I’m surprised they didn’t call this Zpotlight.

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The First 48 Hours with ZBrush

ZBrush DogConfusion, headaches, frustration, anger, hopelessness, sadness, depression and resentment. Those words probably best describe my first two days with this new software.

These are not emotions commonly associated with creativity, artistic output, joy, happiness or inner fulfilment.

And I had such high hopes for ZBrush! My capability of wanting to learn, the excitement of exploring new territory and the certainty that sooner or later I’d be able to figure it out were no longer with me.

Plus my usually reliable learning resources weren’t able to teach me the basics!. For a moment there I lost all hope.

Then I discovered that there may be light at the end of a very dark tunnel after all. Let me tell you all about it in the first part of this exciting new series or Learning Zbrush.

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Mes vacances avec ZBrush

ZBrush LogoDon’t panic, this post is not in French, it’s merely an homage to my man Fred Lebain whose collection of Holga images has always inspired me.

I hear great things about a piece of software called ZBrush. Apparently it’s the best thing that’s happened to the 3D industry since the candy machine. The current release 4R6 packs a heft price tag of $795 (about £560) and therefore sends the message: “It’s not a hobby tool – it’s business software”.

The sales pitch says it does it all and more – from modelling in a very artistic and intuitive way, to texturing better than any other app could ever do. Their customer service is fantastic and they have a showcase site called ZBrushCentral where creators from all over the world can share their works and be admired.

Over the next four weeks, I’ve decided to find out for myself.

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