How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

In this post, Fox Renderfarm, the best render farm in the CG industry, will share with you a ZBrush tutorial about how to sculpt a stylized character. Yuelun Ma is a 3D character artist, specialized in making stylized characters. In this tutorial, he used the character Yaoyao in "League of Legends" as a reference and used ZBrush to create a cute female character. Some of his works are as follows.

League of Legends

References - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush


First of all, I need to look for some reference materials before starting. I found some images on the Internet, including the front, side, etc. of the character, especially the part behind the character. If there is no reference, it would be harder to make the hair and the clothes behind.

References01 - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

References02 - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush


Modeling - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

After deciding on the reference, I started modeling the character with ZBrush. First, I used a basic head model from Zbrush and modified it. Because of the different genders of the characters, the facial features and proportions are also different. In terms of the reference, the proportions of the face and forehead of the stylized characters are very different from the realistic style. Compared with the male characters, the facial contours of the female characters will be smaller. And the proportion of the eyes should be larger. In addition, there is another important feature of the character's head, that is, the pointed ears and the horns on the head, which can be adjusted for these obvious features when sculpting.

Modeling01 - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

Modeling02 - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush


We can make hairstyles with large waves according to the reference, and then make loose hairs based on the hairstyles. When making hair, first arrange the main part, and then adjust other positions and collocations on this basis. Pay attention to the direction of the hair fluttering, and don't flutter irregularly or appear disorderly. The point is to make the main body first, then add more details on this basis, and then exaggerate the arc to a certain extent or turn it into another arc that slightly changes from the original.

Grooming - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

I want this hairstyle to have a very elegant feel, so after finishing the hair, I still need to do some trimming of the fine hair. Pay attention to the floating direction when swaying your hair, and don't let them look contradictory.


The difficulty of texturing lies in stylized eyes, because they are dark on the top and bright on the bottom. There will be some shadow and highlight processing, and the shiny feeling in the reference picture must be presented.

Texturing - How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

Lighting and rendering

The lighting part is simple. In order to highlight the outer contours of the character, I used a darker background and placed a light from the side. The cheeks are specially filled with a spotlight to make the cheeks look very bright. Finally, I also added a light on the top of the head to make the horns and hair look more layered.

How To Sculpt A Stylized Character In ZBrush

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How to Create Goblin in Zbrush
How to Create Goblin in Zbrush
Fox Renderfarm, your best cloud rendering services provider, will share with you a ZBrush tutorial about how to create Goblin from 3D character artist, Hongmin Zheng. Hongmin Zheng is good at making realistic and stylized character models. In this tutorial, he made a Goblin that had stolen the king's gold coin. This work was inspired by the other 3D artist Jianxi Wang's amazing concept. References It is necessary to collect references to make the artwork more authentic and credible, especially the texturing, modeling and posing. I collected a lot of references first, then selected and organized them again. Blocking The model was made with ZBrush, using a basic spherical shape as the basis to sculpt the overall model of the head, especially some facial features, such as its big nose, cracked mouth, ears, belly, and sparse hair. I prefer to use SnakeHook in conjunction with SculptrisPro for quick styling in the Blocking stage, and also turn on AccuCurve to make the shape more rigid. In this production, we can use any method to sculpt, such as using Curvetube to make the shape of the mouth, adding balls to make the eyes. And there is no need to consider lines or levels in this part. SculptrisPro is a great feature just like DynaMesh. They make creation more unrestrained. The new version of the stroke preview function is great, which allows us to always pay attention to the outline of the model. The display of the outline is always the most important part of the model carving. Using DynaMesh, this stage only needs to adjust the whole, ignoring all details. Take a look at the silhouette of the model from multiple angles. I used clayBuildup to brush. Then I adjusted all parts of the model in the TPOSE stage. Because it's not animation, there is no need to bind bones. As long as I confirm the shape of the model, I can start placing it. At the beginning, I tried to disassemble some joints that need to move as much as possible. This makes it easy to adjust POSE, silhouettes, etc.. A single SUB has a small number of faces, and the operation is more smooth. We can watch and test repeatedly. At this time, we pay attention to the parts you are interested in, such as the feeling of the head. We can also add a little material and color to preview. Clothing I used Marvelous Designer to make the clothing. I made a shape, and then adjusted it manually. Some of the props can be reduced in number of faces, or some simple models can be made instead. For example, the gold coin treasure in the Goblin bag can be replaced with simple geometry. After checking that the silhouette and the structure were fine, I started to choose the place I was interested in or the visual center to start visual development. I spent a lot of time on the two areas of the head and hands. But the important point is that the primary and secondary models are separated. Silhouette is always in the first place, followed by level one and level two. The simple understanding of level is the volume of the object, the larger the volume, the more priority. BTW, don't focus on small details too much. Grooming While grooming, we need to look for a lot of real references. The initial effect was not good. I repeatedly modified the hands and hair many times, and finally strengthened the hair level and added some long and short collocations. When adjusting the model, I often think about how to make the model look more speedy and attractive. In the end, I added details such as falling gold coins on the basis of the fluttering of the pants. It is also interesting and reasonable. At this stage, I also consciously optimized each area, such as considering the character’s body fat percentage and skin texturing and so on. Texturing and Rendering When making textures, I use colors to distinguish the painting areas. I can use the method to quickly find the layers. Because the character tends to be more stylized, most of the textures are directly painted with Substance Painter. The last step is rendering when the model is completed. In fact, I prefer a more dramatic atmosphere and lighting. I originally wanted to build a small scene based on this atmosphere to do some interaction. The light uses 3 point light sources.
ZBrush 2021.6 With New Features Is Available Now
ZBrush 2021.6 With New Features Is Available Now
ZBrush 2021.6 is coming! The new features in ZBrush 2021.6 are combining with those from 2021.5 and 2021 to create an inspiring digital sculpting experience. Version 2021.6 adds a new mesh from mask features that allow the user to build base meshes from an outlined shape, the ability to extrude an alpha shape along a curve, the ability to use SnakeCurve brushes in Sculptris Pro mode, true raytraced AO, USD (Universal Scene Description) format for export and import, Lazy Mouse support for Lasso stroke type, Closest and Farthest modes for Continuous Z Picker and more. Let's take a look at the Michael Pavlovich's demo video that shows us the new ZBrush 2021.6 features, To learn more about what’s new, visit the Pixologic website.
ZBrush Tutorials: The Making of Hard Surface Models(2)
ZBrush Tutorials: The Making of Hard Surface Models(2)
Follow part one, Fox Renderfarm, your best cloud rendering services provider, still share the process of using hard surface technology to make a sci-fi style head model in ZBrush from 3d Artist ZX. The following part explains the production process, 1. Drawing reference In this step, ZX uses the standard brush. First, remove the sculpting function of the brush, turn on RGB, select red, and draw the hard edge part of the helmet that needs to be made as a reference. 2. Topology When the reference line of the edge is drawn, you can refer to it for retopology. Personally, ZX likes to use Zbrush's tool topology. It is easy to use, fast and the final result is good, which can improve ZX's work efficiency. Of course, the explanation here is not about topology on ZSphere, but topology on the basis of brushes, which can also keep files concise. The usage is simple, just use the brush to draw on the helmet model, simple and easy to use. After the red line is drawn, we only need to click on the model part to generate a thick model from the red line. For the hard surface model that needs to be made on the corners of the helmet, in addition to the thickness, it also needs to have a concave-convex structure. With a structure, it will be more abundant from other angles. 3. Crease We also need to add some lines to the corners of the crease to keep enough lines to support the hard surface. Then ZX used the ZModeler tool, selected the line mode, and selected crease. In this process, we can select crease, Edge, EdgeLoop Partial, EdgeLoop Complete. Hold down the alt key and click to delete the edge. The function used together in this process is the crease pg. If we don't want the effect of the crease, we can also use an increase to remove the crease. 4. Preview We can press the d key to preview our hard-edged effect, and we can cancel the preview by shift+d when we don't need it. Smooth Subdiv can be used to adjust the model smoothly. The above is an introduction to the process of making the entire model. If we are not particularly familiar with the ZModeler tool, this step can be made in 3ds Max or Maya. However, if time permits, please try Zbrush's topology tool, it is really good to use. One of the most troublesome parts is that Zbrush does not support 5-sided, so many places need to be adjusted, which is more cumbersome.
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