Review: Beginner’s Guide to ZBrush by 3dtotal Publishing

While I enjoy reading on Kindle (where possible) this book was only available in print when I originally purchased, and I’m actually glad I got the real book. Beginner’s Guide to ZBrush is packed to the brim with full-color photos, and the paper quality is top notch. At 288 pages, it’s not the longest book but it focuses on 3 specific projects and feels more like a tutorial than anything else. The art here is great, and the various authors do a good job of showing every step you need to take to replicate their results. I’d consider this text to be a great success and I’m happy to have checked it out, even though I’m not totally sure I need ZBrush for my workflow.

There are 7 chapters in the book, 2 short introductions to the ZBrush app and interface, and 2 chapters at the end to show the KeyShot app and 3D printing. However, the bulk of the text follows 3 projects, a fantasy girl, a cyborg goblin, and a sci-fi robot. Each of these chapters reads more like a tutorial, basically a step by step guide for creating the 3D model. The clarity of the explanation is great, the authors show photos of the menus used, as well as any hotkeys, and do a great job of making a fairly confusing program understandable. And the art really looks nice, it’s reassuring that the authors are accomplished artists.

Overall, I enjoyed this book a lot and felt like a gained a good understanding of how to use ZBrush in the process. I’m still evaluating tools I might need for game development, and I might just stick with Maya (because it’s more familiar), but I do think ZBrush has an advantage for certain art styles and is becoming more popular in the industry. This is the first book I’ve read on ZBrush, so I don’t know how it compares to others, but I found it to be a brilliant text and I don’t think you will be disappointed.