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Sculpt a Fantasy Mushroom Man in Pixologic ZBrush

The digital sculpting of compelling characters can be one of the most exhilarating and rewarding experiences in CG today. Due to the very powerful and feature-rich 3d applications used to create this type of art, however, it can also be one of the most daunting skills to learn. In this beginner/ intermediate level ZBrush tutorial, we will take a detailed look at sculpting a Mushroom Man character using only the program's default tools. Sculpting, retouching, and building a quick pedestal for presentation will all be covered in this exciting walkthrough.

Final Effect Preview

Tutorial Details

  • Software: Pixologic ZBrush
  • Version: 3.5
  • Difficulty: Beginner/ Intermediate
  • Estimated Completion Time: Approximately 2-3 hours
  • Hardware/ Software Requirements : Windows 2000-XP or Mac OSX 10.5 (or newer); PIII and higher or Intel Macintosh; 1G RAM; Zbrush 3.0 or newer and Subtool Master (plugin)
  • Additional/ Supporting Files: Subtool Master Plugin: download
  • Before You Begin

    Here is a list of some handy and commonly used ZBrush hotkeys that, when mastered, will greatly speed up your workflow. I will also be using them frequently throughout the tutorial.

  • Subdivide Geometry: CTRL+D (D and SHIFT+D to move up and down your subdivision levels)
  • Add/ Subtract/ Smooth Brushes: ALT key toggle Zadd/Zsub; SHIFT toggle Smooth brush
  • Toggle Lazymouse: L
  • Enable/ Disable Symmetry: X/Y/Z depending on the symmetry axis you want to isolate (also accessed through the Transform menu)
  • Sculpt/ Scale/ Move/ Rotate Tools: Q - Sculpt; W - Move; E - Scale; R - Rotate
  • Masking: CTRL + drag on model = Marquee mask; Ctrl + click on model = Smooth mask borders; CTRL + ALT + click on model = Sharpen mask borders; CTRL + click on canvas = Invert mask; CTRL + drag on canvas = Clear mask
  • Note: click the 'Monitor' icon to view tutorial in full-screen HD.

    Note: click the 'Monitor' icon to view tutorial in full-screen HD.