You're blocking ads, which pay for BlenderNation. Read about other ways to support us.

Blender/ZBrush Tutorial: Old Man

22 features a face modeling tutorial by Oskar Swierad and Kamil Makowski. Their workflow incorporates Blender, ZBrush and Photoshop.

Even though the Blender part is relatively thin, I think it's interesting to see that they selected Blender for the head modeling and UV unwrapping. They even comment 'In Blender it can be done very simply and fast', which is quite a compliment!

If you want to try ZBrush, you can get a free trial version. Unfortunately, it's crippled so that you cannot import models (among other things), which is required for this tutorial :-/

About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


  1. Hmmm... the only thing i don't like about ZBrush and Blender - that blender doesn't (or does???) correctly support displacement maps done in ZBrush...

  2. Blender will need to be able to import 32 bit floating point Tif. files to be completely compatible with Zbrush.

    We already have a few formats like this HDR amongst them, it is only a matter of time before some Zbrusher fixex blender to import the Tif files.

    but untill that happens you will have to degrade your normal maps to TGA or PNG or BMP.

    there is a verry noticeable diffrence, the main one is banding marks on the normal map.

    ALSO blender dose not support Sub poly displacement, so whatever you make in Zbrush is going to look slightly diffrent (flatter) when you port into blender.


    there you have it... we need 2 improvements before 100% compatibility with Zbrush 2.

  3. Hmm, I wish the dude that used Blender's (soon to be) sculpt features to create a stunning realistic head had made a tutorial. I don't have Zbrush (but have amorphium, but never use it :)

    Bottom line: soon you can do these models within Blender!

    Cheers :D

  4. I've had Zbrush 2 for over a year now. The bottom line is that coupled with Blender, I have an extremely robust modelling pipeline for under $500.

  5. i purchased zbrush 2.0 and just got the 'introduction to zbrush' DVD in hopes it would shed some light on how i can work between blender zbrush because i don't really understand mapping yet. i'm sure the limitation p00f spoke of will make sense to me in a few weeks ;)
    sage, that's great to hear! all my figures i've created in zbrush & exported to blender end up in pieces (i'm kinda new at this) when i export as an OBJ. is that normal or do i have to export it as something else?

    thanks - scatterbrain

  6. p00f:

    >> but untill that happens you will have to degrade your normal maps to TGA or PNG or BMP.

    No you don't, you can still use OpenEXR instead.

  7. I don't have any Z Brush experience so I'm not qualified for a comparrison but it seems to me that with the new (In development) Blender Sculpt mode that you may not even need Z-Brush. I realize that Z-Brush may have a lot more features but I've been seeing some pretty impressive models and a lot of positive feedback on the sculpt mode thread.

    Check these out:

  8. ZBrush is not only a sculpting software. It is great, because of texturing tools and SPEED. For sculpting in Blender you'll need at least 768 MB of RAM - the whole model is displayed at one time and it all bases on polygons, not pixols. You can make a normalmap with ZBrush, having only 256 MB installed.

  9. xAvenger,

    Blenders sculpt tools give me similar poly counts to zbrush for my hardware - 448 MB of usable system ram and 64 MB of ram used for video. On Both systems about 400,000 faces is as much as I can handle comfortably. So your claim of ram requirements is inaccurate.

    For generating normal maps you'll need an external tool aside from Blender - not sure what their ram requirements are.


Leave A Reply

To add a profile picture to your message, register your email address with To protect your email address, create an account on BlenderNation and log in when posting a message.