Classic modeling in ZModeler

Hello. I want to share my experience in using ZModeler. While I was doing my model of vehicle, I decided to set up a set of ZModeler brushes and place them in interface:

Such a set resembles the classic modeling in 3D programs, there are separate icons for calling appropriate command. I experimented with brushes settings. It turned out 24 tools (brushes), the top line of the set is used to act on a single element (point, face or polygon), the bottom line is the same tools, but with acting to polygroup (PG). ZModeler menu (Spacebar) can sometimes be opened for the bottom line tools to change the TARGET settings from Polygroop to Polygroop Island, PolyLoop or Flat Border. Changed settings can be reseted with the “Reset All Brushes” button.

The rest of the tools from the ZModeler Menu I didn’t add at all. Mesh to Brush, Eqalize, Spherize, Unweld, Flip are very specific comands and they can be opened in standard ZModeler menu. (I still study details and, most likely, I do not know all opportunities).

An advantage of this set is that it is visual, icons are easier to find with a glance,
-there are no unused tools,
-necessary commands are configured for each tool, for example, in the Cut tool for polygons used Insert Polyloops, For faces - Split, For points - Bridge, (And all these commands from the category of cutting polygons!)
-there is no need to assign and remember hotkeys, which is very difficult for such a large toolkit.

There are some points. Settings for the MODIFIERS panel

can’t be saved to a brush, they will remain by default. Therefore, when first using Crease Polygroop and Inset Polygroop tools, it’s needed to open the menu (Spacebar) and choose in the MODIFIERS panel “Polygroup Border” and “Inset Region”, respectively. I hope, developers will fix this moment in the next versions.

To create such tool set, you need to save the ZModeller brushes with different settings (Brush -> Save As) in C:\Program Files\Pixologic\ZBrush 4R8\ZStartup\BrushPresets.
To update brushes in the program without rebooting it, you need to press B -> Reset All Brushes
To assign a brush icon, you need to draw it and assign it via Brush -> SelectIcon
Size and the square shape of the brushes are configured in Preferences -> Interface -> UI

If you are interested in trying this set, you can download it here:
There is my set of customized ZModeler brushes and config file (.cfg)
Brushes should be placed in folder C:\Program Files\Pixologic\ZBrush 4R8\ZStartup\BrushPresets
The config file is loaded via Preferences -> Config -> Load UI

ZModeler is a great and interesting tool, I want to ask developers to make several improvements:

  • add ability to save MODIFIERS settings of ZModeler Menu in custom brushes,
  • add normal Extend (Extrude) Edge function for extension polygons from edges (in 3D Max, for example, this is made simply with the Shift pressed). Now for this action needed adding Qmesh thickness or using extrusion upwards, which is very inconenient.




Antigravity Tractor


Excellent design. Simple, yet effective.

Some more scrap metal.


I will add to the topic of convenient modeling.

If desired buttons from ZModeler menu could be duplicated in the interface, for example Polygroop, PolyLoop etc., we could set up them and see always in which mode is selected tool now, without opening the menu.

Sometimes there is a wish to select multiple edges as well as polygons.

Also, it is often difficult to hit the desired edge or point, for example, when using Bridge and Stich.