Review of Gnomon Workshop's Introduction to ZBrush

One word describes this product, Fantastic! Back in the old days when the earth was young, I used to teach prospective teachers to "teach." I spent many hours describing how to present material. When called upon to review "teaching products," I tend to look at them from the instructor angle as well as the student angle. This 2 DVD set with 6 hours of instruction is so comprehensive that it actually seems to have more than 6 hours worth of material on it.

To take a program as different and complicated as ZBrush and decide how to present it is a task in itself. Meats Meier is the instructor on the DVD's. He has broken the topics into very workable units where one topic builds on the previous ones. While using the DVD's on one monitor works great, if you have more than one monitor it is even better because you can work along with the DVD.

The duration of the lectures vary from about 1 hour to 30 minutes. The topics of the lectures are:

  • Basics of ZBrush
  • Interface
  • 2.5D Tools
  • 3D primitives
  • 3D editing Mode
  • Alpha Skinning
  • Texturing
  • ZSpheres
  • Multi-Marking
  • Displacement Creation
  • Rendering Within ZBrush
  • Z Scripts
  • Preferences

While watching the program, one can pause the tape at any point. Also, one can go to the previous lecture, the next, or back to the main menu.

I have had ZBrush for many months now and found that I had trouble learning it. The different interface and the number of controls seemed too much to comprehend. Even though I followed the tutorials that ZBrush referenced online, I could not put it all together enough to use it constructively. Even after just a few lectures with Meats Meier, it was as if a light went on. Suddenly not only did I see the tremendous power of ZBrush, but I also realized that I could learn it. Soon I began creating objects for myself.

The minimum system requirements are: 1GHz or faster processor, 512MB Ram, 64 MB Video Ram, DVD-ROM drive,500 MB hard disk space, 1280 x 1024 display.

The minimum operating system requirements are: Microsoft® Windows XP Pro, Windows 2000, or Apple® Mac® OS X 10.2.

My only criticism of the whole DVD is that if one is using a 17" monitor, it would be hard to watch the DVD. When I tried to set the display to 1024 x 768, everything showed up on the screen but the controls.

The cost is $49.00. For more information go to:

I recommend this DVD to anyone who wants to learn ZBrush or wants to speed up the learning process. It really is great!