Noob questions about ZBrush 2021.1.2 UI

Hello, I have some questions about the UI on ZBrush 2021.1.2. I couldn’t find these answered in the beginner UI videos (looks like old versions).

All those palette-words like Subtool, Geometry, Initialize, etc. that used to be on the right hand side under the Tool palette are not there when I open the program. Do those only show up if there’s a model on the screen?

Also I have clicked through some of the UI setups with those little arrows at the top-right side of the screen, and the Live Boolean button disappears in most of them. Where is the Live Boolean if the big button disappears? That looks like a great tool and don’t want to lose it!

Lastly, I cannot see at least a couple of the buttons below the PolyFrame button (the column on the right hand side between the modeling space and the far right shelf). I think there’s a Transparency and Ghost buttons? How can I get those to show up?


Hi @Carved_Metal

Yes, and with Edit (T) enabled. The ZBrush UI is context-sensitve and UI items will only show when applicable.

That is in “Render > Render Booleans” subpalette. If you move your cursor over a button and hold down Ctrl, it will give you a description of the button and the button path. This works for most but not all buttons and sliders.

The minimum screen resolution for ZBrush is 1280 x 1024, but you can still slide all of the shelves and then move the buttons to a convenient place.
Hold down Ctrl and move your cursor beside one of the icons or buttons on the right shelf, you will get an up/down arrow. When you get that, you can slide the shelf up or down. It’s kind of fiddly because the area to get the up/down arrow is small. If you temporarily remove an icon or button from the right shelf, you can use that space to get the up/down arrow much easier. This works the same for all the shelves. Top, bottom left and right. Except, for the top and bottom shelves, it will be a left/right arrow.

Thank you so much! Looking forward to ZBrushing much more as opposed to just good ol’ Rhino :smiley:

Hi Carved, welcome to the forums!

ZBer2 pretty much covered the whole thing but there’s one thing I’d like to add, I hope it can also help you out with some of those UI issues:

In addition to the tips above there’s something else you might want to consider: customizing your UI. It’s really very easy to do and the best of all? There’s absolutely no risk of you ruining your UI beyond repair, because you can always return things to the way they were with 1 click.

Allow me to demonstrate:

This is my ZBrush start screen (I did take the liberty of removing my name :wink: ) but if you look closely you’ll notice that the “Home Page” button in the upper left corner (next to LightBox) is gone; instead I have a ZAppLink button. The “Sculptris Pro” button in the toolbar at the top has been removed as well, there you’ll notice the GoZ button. This makes it much easier for me to quickly edit my work in Photoshop Elements or to send my work into Daz Studio.

And finally you may also notice that the right shelve also contains 2 extra palettes: Texture and Document.

Maybe something to consider? See, if those icons are giving you problems then maybe you should just remove them and as a substitute you could then add the Transform palette to the right shelve. Most buttons which are docked at the right side of the canvas come from the Transform palette.

It’s really very easy:

  • Open the Preferences palette, expand Config and click “Enable Customize”.
  • Now you can move things around using alt-control.
    ** Keep in mind: you can’t remove buttons and such from palettes, but you can move those to another area (like the area around your canvas).
  • If you want to remove a ‘docked button’ then simply drag it onto the canvas (using that alt-control key combination) and then let go.
  • The best way dock buttons is to temporarily place a palette onto a shelve and then drag the option(s) out from there.
  • When you’re done you need to click “Enable Customize” again to disable the editing mode.

As I mentioned: there’s no risk of making a mess because if that happens and you suddenly feel lost: no worries! Open the Preferences palette again, expand Config (if it hasn’t been already) and then simply click “Restore Standard UI”. B00m, you’re back to normal again! And if you can’t find this option or something else goes wrong? Just restart the program and it will do the same thing: reset everything back to normal.

Just for clarity sake, these are the options I’m referring to:


Well, you may have guessed already by looking at this but if you want to save your UI changes (do make sure to double check that everything is in order) then you simply click “Save UI” and you’re done. Don’t forget to remove any palettes you may have temporarily placed on a shelve! :wink:

This is by far one of my favorite ZBrush features because it can seriously help to make the software a lot more easier to use. Simply because you’ll have direct access to all the options which you need.

Hope this could help too!

Thank you, ShellUser! I think customizing the UI will indeed come in handy. I primarily want to use ZBrush for jewelry design; having more of the 3D sculpting thingies at a glance would be useful. Always nice to be able to reset to defaults…just in case :smiley: