ZBrush 4R4 is the latest update from Pixologic of their digital sculpting tool that makes 3D/2.5D modeling easy. Unlike most other 3D tools, ZBrush uses techniques that are more like sculpting and integrates it with texturing and painting. ZBrush is an application that was created by artists for artists and since 1999, it has been helping both digital hobbyists as well as professionals from over 10 industries to expand their world of creativity.
ZBrush has been used for a wide variety of digital creations that include movies, games, and animations. Some of these include "Avatar", "Lord of the Rings", "Pirates of the Caribbean", "Gears of War", "Assassins Creed", and "Uncharted".
ZBrush uses a proprietary 'pixol' technology which stores much of the information for all of the objects on the screen. Similar to a pixel, each pixol contains information on the x and y position and color value. A pixol also has a Z position that contains information on depth, orientation, and material.
The main user interface is very customizable and it allows you to move things in and out of what are called shelves – side bars that can collapse away when you need more space and reappear when you need them. The tools are stored on palettes which you pull down and put on the shelves. There are a set of predefined configurations that are available, but you can also create your own to match your workflow. You can even adjust the coloring scheme. This can be really handy if you work on different types of projects like animation for some, and sculpting for others.
ZBrush uses Subdivision Levels to detail your sculpting from the macro to the micro levels. Since, in most cases, you are dealing with more than two dimensions, working with subdivisions lets you zoom in on a 3D model. By subdividing, you quadruple the mesh resolution giving you much finer control over what you sculpt. Subdividing again, gives even more. So that when you want really fine control on your brush strokes you can have it, but, since ZBrush retains the previous levels, if you need to go back and adjust something on a broader basis, you can zoom back out and make those adjustments.