v2021.6.x ZBrushCore


3D Starts Here

ZBrushCore is exactly what its name implies: The most essential elements of the award-winning ZBrush software. It includes everything that you need to get your start and make your mark in the world of digital sculpting and painting. These features are streamlined into a package that is approachable for artists of all experience levels. With ZBrushCore you can sculpt, paint and create nearly anything you might imagine.


ZBrushcore Horse ZBrush Artist :: Martin Nikolov
ZBrush Artist: Martin Nikolov

Modeled to fit your creative needs

Whether your experience level is a lot or a little, ZBrushCore is so natural to use that it’s almost like modeling with actual clay – without the mess! (And with the ability to Undo!) Use ZBrushCore’s powerful toolset to create amazing details with ease, as well as paint and color your models.

ZBrush Artist :: Shane Olson
ZBrush Artist: Shane Olson

ZBrushCore is for everyone.

If you…

  love sculpting, messing with clay, or just love art

are a 2D illustrator wanting to try 3D

an aspiring game, animation, or VFX artist

an artist with big ideas for 3D printing

a professional jeweler wanting to extend your range with intricate and detailed designs

ZBrushCore is for you.

Every step of the way

Over 500 free training videos

With a great library of in-depth training videos and a friendly and helpful online community, you’ll have all the support you need to get the most out of ZBrushCore. Check out ZClassroom.

Multi-Language Support

ZBrushCore is available in 7 different languages.* You can select your language preference during installation, as well as changing your preference on the fly from within the application. You’ll be able to feel comfortable and at home, right from the start.

*English, Japanese, German, Spanish, French, Korean, and Chinese, together with support for custom translations.

New in ZBrushCore 2021.6.2

zbrushcore balloon brushMesh Balloon Brush

Mesh Balloon is an amazingly fast brush for creating base meshes that you will then sculpt using the rest of the ZBrushCore feature set. Simply outline your desired shape with the masking lasso. ZBrushCore will instantly turn that outlined shape into an editable mesh. You can then either jump directly to sculpting or you can continue to refine the outline — adding to it, subtracting, or cutting holes. As you modify the shape, the generated model updates in real-time so that you never have to guess what the results will be.

Lasso, circle, rectangle, and curve stroke types are supported, as are alphas. The Selection brush now also supports the precision of Lazy Mouse.

Mesh Balloon creates soft, organic shapes in a balloon-type of effect that is thicker where the enclosed shape is wide and thins near corners.

Space Mouse Support

Navigate in a way that frees you from a keyboard. Using 3Dconnexion’s Spacemouse line gives you the ability to navigate with just a slight touch of the controller cap. Rotate and zoom at the same time or pivot around your point of interest without breaking your sculpting stride.

At this time, these devices are only compatible with ZBrushCore 2021.6.2 and ZBrush 2021.5 or greater.

Thick Skin

For the true sense of adding, removing or moving clay across a surface use Thick Skin. This gives any mesh the appearance of having been sculpted as a fine art piece. Thick Skin can also be used to establish a specific plateau from which to build upon a surface to create scales and other features with consistent height or depth.

Real-time ambient occlusion

Sculpt with real-time render accuracy that captures every stroke applied to your mesh. Real-time ambient occlusion gives you the ability to quickly see which portions of your model might need that extra touch. Bring your creations to life in real-time with the Preview AO (Ambient Occlusion) feature.

Contrast Deformation

Didn’t sculpt those wrinkles deeply enough? Need to enhance the details of those fish scales for a 3D print? The Contrast slider provides you with the ability to globally enhance all sculpting details. Contrast doesn’t just bump the details. It can also be applied to smooth a surface back towards the original state before any sculpting details were applied.

Gizmo 3D Deformers

ZBrushCore includes thirteen of the 27 Deformers found in the full version of ZBrush. Each deformer has a unique feature set to allow quick shape alterations that would not be possible through brush strokes. ZBrushCore 2021.6.2 adds Offset, Inflate, Scale, Skew, Stretch, Smooth and Smooth All.

Close Holes

Need to close off a surface to make it water tight for 3D printing or you just need to close a surface in order to sculpt details across the surface? The Close Holes option provides a single click solution to close off any open surfaces on your model.

Capture & Turntable

Turntables and recording allows you to present your model in a video format by rotating the model around 360° or showing the entire sculpting process from beginning till the end.

Simply set the size and the area to record, and then press the turntable or the record button to start recording your creation.

New in ZBrushCore 2021


The beauty of ZBrush is that you don’t need to worry about the kind of topology that is created. Feel free to explore, letting your imagination take you where it wants. Once you have your design, ZBrush can nearly instantly convert its polygons into a usable base mesh with clean edge loops and polygon flow.


A piece of geometry can also be added to each polygon as a completely interactive instance. Select from a library of presets to make a surface look like canvas, denim jeans, or even chainmail.


Dynamic Subdivision

The Dynamic Subdivision system contains alternative functions to ZBrush’s Classic Subdivision Surface mode, allowing you to apply dynamic smoothing to your models without actually dividing the polygons.

While working with Dynamic Subdivision active, you see the higher resolution surface while your brushes operate on the lower resolution base mesh.

Dynamic SubdivisionDynamic Subdivision

iMage3D GIF & PNG

Experience a revolutionary new way to save your models. TThe iMage3D GIF and iMage3D PNG formats allow you to share your files as special versions of the universal *.GIF and *.PNG image formats. On websites and social media, these files appear as normal 2D images as seen with the dinosaur to the right. But when someone saves that image and opens it in their copy of ZBrushCore the band of “noise” at the bottom contains all the data necessary to reconstruct the image into a full 3D model.

Zbrushcore dinosaur

Import from Sculptris

ZBrushCore now allows you to import *.sc1 files from Sculptris. This allows you to transfer your past creations from Sculptris to the world of ZBrush!

Zbrush sculptris import

Sculptris Pro

We are pleased to introduce Sculptris Pro, a dynamic tessellation sculpting workflow that enables you to ignore the constraints of polygon distribution and just — sculpt! Sculptris Pro makes it possible for you to begin with any shape or model, whether it has ten polygons or ten thousand. There is absolutely no need to worry about having enough polygons to capture details. With Sculptris Pro you can simply brush across the surface. Sculptris Pro will dynamically add and reduce polygons wherever and whenever it’s needed, freeing you to focus entirely on the look you’re trying to achieve.

ZBrush places a library of over 400 sculpting brushes at your fingertips. Activating Sculptris Pro will transform each of these brushes into a system that places no limitations on your creativity.

ZBrush Artist :: James W. CainZBrush Artist :: James W. Cain
ZBrush Artist :: James W. Cain

Real-Time Silhouette View

Sometimes you just need to look at your model from a fresh perspective, making sure that it works on a foundational level. With the new Real-Time Silhouette view you’ll be able to evaluate the overall shape of the model in a small window while still being able to see the same model with fully painted and sculpted details in the main document space. This can give you the freedom to explore new shapes or ensure that the model will read well from a distance.

zbrushcore silhouette
ZBrush Artist :: Zhelong Xu



With the new CamView feature you will always know the orientation of your model relative to the world axis, providing an accurate understanding of your XYZ space and offering an interchangeable one-click navigation view. Switch from front to back or left to right views of any model by just clicking on icons within the CamView. You can even load any model to create your own unique custom CamView and then share it with other users.

zbrushcore camera
ZBrush Artist :: Juras Rodionovas

Subtool Folders

Speed up your productivity with the efficient new Folder System. Far more than an organizational tool, this feature also makes it possible to apply actions to all contained meshes at once such as Move, Scale, Rotate, Duplicate, Delete, Hide/Show PolyPaint and more.

Universal Camera

Artists can now precisely match the focal length of imported photographs and 3D renders. It is also now possible to export or import the ZBrush camera settings for use in any 3D application, opening the path of rich 2D composited illustrations, using the powerful ZBrush BPR or NPR renderer mixed with other 3D rendering solutions such as KeyShot.

The ZBrush Universal Camera offers complete control over the Focal Length, Crop Factor, and more. It supports the undo and redo of camera movements. There is even storage of various camera settings, making it easier than ever to find that perfect final composition.


A good pose is the essence of a great composition. Rhythm, gesture, weight, and balance are all key to any work of art.

ZBrush Artist :: Shane Olson

Mannequins are essentially ZSphere armatures. The way that you interact with them allows for easy posing, so that you can more easily explore your ideas – faster. The ZSphere Mannequins can readily be edited to fit any character or creature you need. Create an entire scene in just a few clicks! In no time, you’ll have established perfect visual harmony and be on your way to sculpting a masterpiece. Use the Mannequin sample projects or Zoo Animals first introduced in ZBrush 2020 and now part of ZBrushCore 2020 to find just the perfect pose for single or multi-character models.

Other new features

  • New Import/Export
  • Snake Hook Brush
  • Remember Draw Size
  • Remember Dynamic Size
  • Pressure Sensitivity Sliders – Brush Palette
  • Preferences > Tablet Menu
  • QuickSave Folder Location
  • VMem Save Folder Location
  • SubTool Size Sliders
  • SubTool Position Sliders

ZBrushCore Features

Powerful Brush System

ZBrushCore’s brushes allow you to shape, sculpt, refine, and detail your models or insert pre-made shapes.

Ready-to-Use Content

Included with ZBrushCore is a whole library of content to help you as a jumping-off point for your own creations.

Dynamesh: Digital Clay

DynaMesh is the perfect tool to try out your design ideas while keeping an optimum sculpting surface. Reshape your models and add or remove parts, all on the fly.


Quickly build complex organic shapes, characters, and creatures by linking the unique ZSpheres together. It’s like drawing a stick figure and letting ZBrushCore give it volume. When you’re ready to start sculpting, a single click converts the structure into a sculptable mesh.

Wherever dreams take you

Whether you are creating an illustration, a game character, a toy, a figure for 3D print, or designing jewelry, ZBrushCore gives you the freedom to go wherever your inspiration takes you.

Almost Infinite Detail

ZBrushCore’s Academy Award-winning subdivision technology allows you to create extremely high definition meshes for the very finest details, while still being able to change the overall shape if you wish.

Surface Noise

For quick surface effects, ZBrushCore includes a powerful noise generator. Want to make your model look as though it’s made of stone? Just a couple clicks and it’s done!

Shape Extraction

The Extract tool allows you to quickly create new shapes by painting a mask on the model. This is perfect for creating armor and other close-fitting pieces.

3D Print Ready

ZBrushCore comes complete with a button to optimize your model, getting it ready for 3D printing.

Render beautiful images.

Use ZBrushCore to produce a final image of your sculpted and painted model that you can then edit with your favorite 2D software. Alternatively, you can use the optional ZBrush to KeyShot Bridge, sending your model to KeyShot with a single click for a photorealistic render.

When you’re ready to progress

If after mastering ZBrushCore you want to take your art to the next level with ZBrush itself, you’ll find the move hassle-free. All that you’ve learned in ZBrushCore can be directly applied to ZBrush.

At its heart, ZBrushCore is the same as the world-class and industry-famous ZBrush. So whether you’re a professional, amateur, or a complete beginner, you can be sure that you’ll get the results you want.



ZBrush Comparison Chart

Base Mesh Generation



Mesh Extract
Zee Zoo
Mesh from Mask




Max. number of polygons per mesh
20 Million
100 Million
Multi-Resolution Mesh Editing (Subdivision surface sculpting)
Insert Multi-Mesh
Number of Brushes
Multiple-Mesh support (Subtools)
Surface Noise
Boolean-type operations with DynaMesh
Live Booleans
3D Surface Effect ClayPolish
Reference Image support
Sculptris Pro
SnakeHook Brush
Curve Alpha
Thick Skin
Contrast Deformations
Close Holes
ZRemesher (Automatic Retopology)BasicAdvanced
Dynamic SubdivisionBasicAdvanced




2D and 2.5D painting and drawing tools
Document resolution:Screen SizeUp to 8K




3D painting capabilities (PolyPaint)
Texture Map support
Projection Painting (SpotLight)




ZBrush to KeyShot Bridge support
Render passes
Material editing/import
Real-Time Preview AO
Raytracing AO




Bridge between major 3D applications (GoZ)
Export settings for 3D printing (3D Print Hub)
Opens all files created by Sculptris
Opens all files created by ZBrushCoreMini
Opens all files created by ZBrushCore
Opens all files created by ZBrush




Available on Windows and MacOS
64-bit architecture
Number of activated machines (licensing)
CPU-based - no special graphics card needed
Graphics tablet support
Library of 3D startup models
Language localization - English, Japanese, German, French, Spanish, Korean and Simplified Chinese.
SubTool Folders
Real-Time Sihouette View
Universal Camera

Advanced Features



Gizmo 3D Deformers 1327
Gizmo 3D Primitives
Advanced Brush/Stroke Customization
User-made Brushes ZBrush can load brushes created in ZBrushCore, but ZBrushCore can not load brushes created in ZBrush
3D Layers
HD Geometry support
Fiber generation (Fibermesh)
Advanced copying and instancing tools (Array Mesh, NanoMesh, MicroMesh)
Masking capabilities
Polygroup capabilities
Mesh projection
Advanced split/merge of models
UV Mapping
Ambient Occlusion
SubSurface Scattering
Environment Maps
BPR Filters
Advanced 3D file export through plugins
Mesh Optimization (Decimation Master) ZBrushCore is limited to 5 preset polygon count optimizations. (20K, 35K, 75K, 150K or 250K))Basic Advanced
Scripting / Plugins / Macros
Model hollowing for 3D printing
Cloth Brushes

ZBrush and ZBrushCore are CPU-based software, meaning that a special video card is not required to get the best results when running the applications. ZBrush and ZBrushCore will work on most computers running Mac OSX and Windows. Simply make sure that your system meets or exceeds the following minimum requirements.


  • Windows: 64-bit editions of Windows 7 or newer
  • Mac OSX: 10.10 or above.
  • CPU: i5/i7/Xeon technology or AMD equivalent
  • RAM: 8GB required for working with multi-million polygon meshes. 16GB+ recommended
  • HDD: 100GB of hard drive free space for the scratch disk. SSD highly recommended for ZBrushCore and its scratch disk
  • Pen Tablet: Wacom or Wacom compatible (Carbon API) recommended.
  • Monitor: 1920×1080 monitor resolution or higher with millions of colors.
  • Most cards manufactured 2008 or newer. Must support OpenGL 3.3 or higher.


  • 64-bit editions of Windows Vista or newer
  • Mac OSX: 10.10 or above.
  • CPU: Core2duo with SSE2 technology or better.
  • RAM: 4GB (6GB+ strongly recommended)
  • HDD: 8GB of hard drive free space for the scratch disk
  • Pen Tablet: Mouse or Wacom compatible (Carbon API) pen tablet recommended.
  • Monitor: 1280×1024 monitor resolution with millions of colors.
  • Most cards manufactured 2008 or newer. Must support OpenGL 3.3 or higher.


ZBrushCore 2021.6.6 Update

This release brings feature parity with ZBrush and ZBrushCoreMini*.

Of special note, Chisel 3D and VDM (Vector Displacement Mesh) brushes now work with Sculptris Pro mode, providing an easy way to build out your base meshes uses pre-sculpted elements.


  • Added several new Chisel 3D brushes.
  • VDM Brushes have been updated to work with Sculptris Pro.
  • Increased the alpha tolerance when using Mesh Extract. The cut-off level is now exactly 50% gray.

*If you have an older computer system and were previously unable to run ZBrushCoreMini 2021, please go to My Licenses and download the updated ZBrushCoreMini. It has been updated for increased compatibility with older systems.

What’s new in 2021.6.2

  • MeshBalloon Brush
  • SpaceMouse Support
  • Thick Skin
  • Real-Time Ambient Occlusion
  • Contrast Deformation
  • Deformers
  • Close Holes
  • Capture & Turntable


Master Hair & Fur in ZBrush

Learn how to use PolyPaint and groom and optimise fur by Pablo Muñoz Gómez.


Tutorial: Pixelogic ZBrush Z4R5 Time for Art The Dragon Flyer

In this session, Pixolator demonstrates two of the new Z4R5 features: ‘Panel Loops’ and ‘Polish By Features’. With the help of these tools, you will be able to quickly transform a roughly shaped mesh to a glossy hard-surface model.