Z Brush 4r7 tips ,,(Zmodeler)(nan mesh)(array mesh)(zremesher2.0)

Their is a shortage of videos and tips, please share in this thread .

Like others I am lost, with some of the new tools


Here are a number of tips on point by point modeling I posted elsewhere. Maybe helpful for when you need to do some mesh surgery. Most of the vids focus on the flashier aspects of ZModeller like Qmesh. Box modeling is great, but sometimes you just need to be able to model on the vertex level.

I’ll list some of the basic ones I’ve documented thus far, and maybe they’ll be of assistance to newer users. I’ve also personally found things go much faster if I assign the Space keystroke to my forward pen button, to make switching between modes as quick as possible, requiring one finger and minimum screen travel. That Zmodeler context menu gets a lot of traffic.

  1. Connect the dots. Basic vertex connection. Point> Bridge> Two Points :

  1. Precise Poly Splitting via Slice. Slicing is by far the easiest way to do this, although you will have to hide any backfacing polygons you want to protect, as it will slice through the other side as well. It will also reassign your polygrouping, which may not always be desirous. (Tip: don’t slice completely across the edge of a polygon that is bordered by hidden geometry–it will insert nearly invisible geometry to force quads that will cause smoothing issues, but can’t be easily seen or isolated):

  1. Precise Point by Point Poly Splitting. This is a little messier, but it may be the best way to work on some complicated situations not easily sliced, or if you want to preserve complex polygrouping. It’s important to remember that Zbrush won’t tolerate N-gons, so it’s going to insert a lot of extraneous edges as you do this to force quads and tris. Just try to ignore them and focus on the placement of the verts. Edges can be cleaned up afterward. Split the lines first with Edge>Split, and sliding the verts along the edge to where you want to put them. Then use the point by point connection in number one to draw the actual line you want, and delete any unnecessary edges:


  1. Edge Merging. Speaking of cleanup, sooner or later you’re going to end up with some garbage geo you’re going to want to simplify in an isolated area where loops don’t apply well. QMesh is so magic in other ways, I’m not convinced that I’m not missing a mode somewhere where you can just slide Geometry into other geometry and have it auto merge. But in the meantime, this is the best way I’ve found to take care of that. Unlike Point stitching, Edge Stitching requires a hole, so you must first delete the target polys via polygroup selection, or highlighting them one by one with alt clicks. Then set edge mode to Edge>Stitch, and click on the edges on each edge of the hole to merge them. It will average the position of the two.


  1. Point by Point Merging. Unlike Edge stitching, point stitching can work right on the surface without deleting any polys. It also currently has better options for where you want the merge to occur (in the middle, on the second point clicked, or at the first). Simply Select Point> Stitch> and the desired merge location, then click one point after the other.


The thing to remeber about ZModeler, is that it works great in conjunction with many of the traditional zbrush functions you already know, like masking and transpose. Use all the tools at your disposal in different combinations, and there’s always more than one way to get some place. Some times you want to extrude with QMesh, sometimes you want the control of a transpose extrusion. As always, masking can be used to protect polygons from unwanted changes, which means it can be helpful to limit bevels, loop insertions, or splitting functions. Be creative!

If anyone has any other questions on ZModeler or Arrays, I’ll try to answer them. I’m about 85 % on ZModeler, and about 60% on arrays–a lot of it is still mysterious to me. Haven’t worked much with Nanomesh yet, but I understand the basics.

Thanks so much, man! The only other thing I would need to see is just someone modeling a simple object. Not something too fancy. Usually people try to show off fancy things in youtube videos set to trance/techno/electronica. I just want to see someone model a dog house with zmodeler at some point ;3 Using all the tools


Dont treat it as a polygon model. Watch ryan explain the zmodeler brush. I have been posting my take on the brush for months, I tried to tell people you will still need other polygon modeling programs… We gave to look at it as a hard surface enhancement…

Yes I use the brush and I love it, but only after I understood its limit … Ryan seem to really struggle with it.

The biggest thing that holds back ZModdeler as a polygonal modeler, other than the fact that it’s unpolished first generation tech that is missing a couple features you might be used to, is the fact that ZBrush doesn’t tolerate N-Gons. So if any operation would result in a polygon with more than 4 verts, it inserts a bunch of edges that can confuse the situation. You can train yourself to ignore these, and just focus on the component at hand, but the cleanup does make for some extra work.

That said, its entirely possible to use ZModdeler as a polygonal modeler once you learn the best way to go about things. This Laser cannon was entirely modeled in Zbrush at the wire and vertex level, as I would in a traditional modeler, which you can see by all my crazy ugly wiring all over the place to reinforce edges and curves. It’s mostly one piece (click on the lower attached image thumbnail for a larger version, I didn’t want to blow out the thread formatting):


It’s a tool, like anything else. It can be learned to various degrees of proficiency. Some people might stop at at QMeshing, but you can take it farther.



I guess if you are modeling certain things, like mechanical stuff. I wouldn’t use it for character base or architect … Ryan did look kind of lost. Did you see in video.

The only thing I heard Ryan say is that if you come into ZMod thinking it’s going to be like modelling in something like Maya you’ll be disappointed. That’s true. Of course a first generation tool is not going to match a polished polygonal toolset that’s been developed for over a decade. It’s primarily a box modelling tool, not a polygon by polygon tool.

But as far as using it to model something like a character base, you absolutely can. A Base character is not that complicated an object. And in fact, I would claim it’s my preferred way to do things in Zbrush now. It’s far easier and more precise than wrestling with Zspheres, in my opinion. I’m still working on the “doghouse” tutorial the above poster requested, but I can easily put together a base character mesh as well.

Where do they get that green cube divided into four polygons on each side to start with the Zmodeler brush? All the videos start with that I’ve seen. They say just hit the “B” key, then “Z”, then “M”, but doesn’t work.

Hey 3d_Arch this is what I did to get it was create a 3d cube, go into edit mode, then make poly mesh 3d, then goto the initialize menu, then click the QCube.

Also, if you append a primitive cube into an existing tool as a subtool, it will come into the tool in QCube mode, with sections that can be adjusted in the initialize menu.

I’m afraid I don’t know the key sequences for any of this. I tend to rely on my own custom primitives through lightbox.

Before I model the doghouse for which I’ll be using QMesh a lot, I thought it would be best that everyone had the Qmesh fundamentals down. QMesh is the heart and soul of ZModeller, and a lot of fun to use. This should cover the basic points.

  1. I’ll start with a simple 6 sided cube. Selecting the ZModeler tool, I set the polygon action to QMesh, and the Target to “Single Poly” (we’ll talk a little more about targets later). (Tip: ZMod can have context actions for points, edges, and polygons, and will execute that action depending on what you are highlighting when you start the action. At times, it may be helpful to set the action to “Do Nothing” for components you aren’t focusing on at the time. This will keep you from inadvertently committing an unwanted change if your aim is off.)

QMesh extrudes polys outward or inward depending on the context of your cursor movement relative to the model. In most cases it’s pretty intuitive. I click on one side of the cube, and drag it outward, which creates new geometry from the starting point:

  1. QMesh has certain functions which are context sensitive to that specific tool. For instance, you can use it to simply move a polygon selection inward or outward without creating new geometry by holding down SHIFT after you you start to drag. Likewise, you can change to new polygrouping by tapping ALT after you start to drag:

  1. Continue making click and drag actions on the resulting top polygons, and you can extrude out a series. If you simply click on the target poly with QMesh active without dragging, it will repeat the last action you performed with it, which is a simple way to get even spacing.

You can then push or drag with an inward motion towards the model which will result in an inward extrusion, effectively “erasing” that polygon chunk. If you dont want to entirely clear it, but rather just reposition it, hold down Shift during the action. You can even push from the side of one of the middle polygons to eliminate entire “chunks” out of the chain altogether, resulting into two separate meshes.

  1. To make things more interesting, I’m going to slice up the geometry a little bit, by inserting some edge loops, which is an Edge action. So I hover over the target edge, and set the action to “Insert”, with a “Single Loop” target modifier. This will allow me to click on that edge, and insert a perpendicular loop anywher along the line I want it.:

  2. However, I decide I want more evenly spaced loops to divide the cube into uniform sections. Sp I change the Edge > Insert target modifier to “Mulitple Loops”. This lets me interactively drag out a series of evenly spaced loops. I repeat the action on the other side with intersecting loops:

  1. I unify the polygrouping on my newly segmented cube to make it easier on the eyes. Then I just play around a bit, pushing and pulling single polys out.:


  1. But what if I want to affect more than a single polygon with my QMeshing? If you want a quick custom selection, you can simply hold down ALT with ZMod active, and click or paint a series of polygons which will turn them white. In Single Poly mode, this selection will be affected next instead of the poly you click on:

  1. Likewise, there are a ton of different target selections you can set the tool to, that can produce really interesting effects when used creatively. These are documented elsewhere, and you’ll just have to play around with them a bit to get a feel for which does what. In this example, I’m going to insert another loop of polys with Insert Loop, that will all be the same polygroup. Since they are the only polygroup of that color on the cube, when I set the QMesh Target to “Polygroup All”, it will extrude all the polygons of the same polygroup that you click on. In this case, it’s just that one polygroup, so I get a wrap around extrusion around the base of the cube.

  1. Go crazy pushing and pulling polygons out from, and into each other to make bridge connections. Get a feel for the “snapping” sensitivity which can be adjusted in the QMesh modifiers. Get a feel for if you only drag a polygon out slightly rather than to the full snap, you can create inclines. Have fun!

Well, I guess, no poly-by-poly then. Does somebody know a way to assign hotkeys to zmodeler actions and targets?

@Spyndel - I didn’t mean literally! I wasn’t expecting you to model a dog house:lol: But if you were going to anyway I won’t stop you!

Also about Ryan K’s vids. I think he had a really awesome idea about using Unified skin set at the lowest resolution. That was really clever and I can see a lot of situations where that would be very useful such as shadowbox -> unified skin -> zmodeler. However, I think after that he tried to use the new tools on a much too complex geometry. He should have cut up the model into pieces and worked on the pieces separately. Then you can fuse them with bridging or just float some of the geometry. So I think his impression is based on trying to model on much too complex mesh. I’m inclined to see things the way that Spyndel explains them. :smiley:

poly by poly is tricky and in this example really cumbersome but still possible.

in edge mode, use the Extrude Edge option -> go to the “inside” pof the edge which you want to extrude, use shift to only extrude a poly ->move it via the Move edge option

in point mode select stitch two points (I set the modifier to Start point) click first and last point.
and that pointmode you have to use at least two times since the extrude edge mode splits the faces.

if the face is hidden, go to polygon actions, use Flip Faces and flip the hidden face.

1.-The B-Z-M secuence por ZModeler dont work, how i can fix this ítem?
2.-I will love if the Gem Team fix the N-Gon issue adding a Clean_N-Gon bottom(one click)
3.-In this step that im plaiyng with the ZModeler i put in the imageplane the ZModeler popup to make exercise more easy,for me:

4.-Porbably some of the Guru here can make a zscript to get the ZModeler window open?


The “N-gon issue” is not so much something that needs “fixed”, as it is an engine limitation. Zbrush is built around quads.

I too hope Zbrush can handle N-Gons someday, but it won’t be a minor fix when/if it happens.

‘I too hope Zbrush can handle N-Gons someday, but it won’t be a minor fix when/if it happens.’

Which is why we have GoZ to go, if needed, to Modo, or Maya or whatever.

Only: for a first implementation of an entire new ‘wing’ to the ZBrush construction, ZModeler is simply beyond belief.
And the importance of other software will in many if not most cases be reduced to ‘helpers’.

I am very impressed.

One question though: when choosing Mask in edge mode, I can only click to select an edge. It seems not possible to select by dragging/painting over them. Perhaps this was not meant to be so?

Few of the ZMod-related functions seem to support paint-style actions at this time. One notable exception is the custom-selection mode where you hold down ALT to select specific polygons. This mode does allow you to “paint” selections in an unbroken stroke.

@myclay cumbersome it is.
And it seems that assigning hotkeys to zmodeler stuff is not possible at this stage. This is what makes me sad the most, hope we’'ll have this ability in the major release. Right now zmodeler is inefficient, especially comparing to according toolsets in 3dsmax/Maya/Modo/Cinema4d etc, lacks a lot of basic functionality.
It’s good to have this tool at hand though. Sufficient for lazy basemeshing.