Concept Sculpting in ZBrush

Concept Art and Illustration > Concept Sculpting in ZBrush

    Teacher Information

    Bin Li is a 3D Modeler and concept artist who specializes in character sculpting. He is currently working at Framestore on the following upcoming feature films: Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Mary Poppins and Scooby Doo. During his career he has worked on many high profile projects for clients including Sesame Street, Ugly Dolls, Nike, BMW, Toyota, Ford and the USA National Olympic team as well as Black Science and Deadly Class comics. In addition to this, his artwork has been featured in Virtual Reality Projects such as Son of Jaguar and Power Rangers: Zord Rising.

    Course Outline

    Part 1: The basics of ZBrush

    Week 1 - Learn the UI of ZBrush and obtain a simple and powerful Zbrush workflow. Understand how and why to use brushes, tools, sub-tools, symmetry layers, UI shortcuts and morph targets so you can work efficiently and effectively in 3D.

    Week 2 - Learn the basics of organic sculpting, using the sculpting from sphere technique and working with a variety of brushes.

    Week 3 - Acquire the basic techniques for rapid mechanical sculpting, working with hard surface brushes as well as the clipping and slicing tool.

    Part 2: Creating a concept with ZBrush

    Week 4 - Learn how to sketch out quick ideas in 3D using Zbrush. Understand the concept sculpt pipeline.

    Weeks 5 - 7 - Sculpt your concept in Zbrush while receiving one-on-one feedback and correction from the instructor.

    Week 8 - Learn how to apply materials and textures so you can bring your concept to the next level of realism.

    Week 9 - Become proficient posing your character and lighting in ZBrush so you can create an epic hero shot.

    Week 10 - Learn to render, using KeyShot, and composite your image in Photoshop to produce a jaw dropping finished piece you can be proud to use in your portfolio.


    Mondays from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM

    Date of first class: October 1st

    Duration: 10 weeks

    You can register at the bottom-left of this page.


    ZBrush is an amazing tool for concept artists and illustrators, especially for characters, creatures and other organic concepts. You can use Zbrush to both quickly sketch out concepts and then bring them to a highly developed state. After that, you can render them with Keyshot and export the renders for compositing in Photoshop. You then apply the finishing touches and create a breathtaking ultra-realistic production painting or portfolio piece. And this is exactly what you will learn in this class!

    You don't have to have any prior experience in 3D or be a technical wizard to use Zbrush. If you can use Photoshop and imagine objects in 3D, then you have the necessary technical skills to add this powerful tool to your arsenal and acquire one of the most efficient pipelines in this rapidly evolving industry. Once you have integrated digital sculpting into your workflow, you will never again be limited to working in just 2 dimensions!

    In this course, you will learn the basics of ZBrush so you can efficiently sculpt your concepts. Classes usually consist of about 90 minutes of explanation and teacher demonstration followed by 90 minutes of practice time with individualized coaching from the instructor. You will learn 3d concept sketching, digital sculpting, applying textures and materials, posing, lighting, rendering and compositing.

    By the end of this class you will be proficient in the basics of Zbrush for concept design. You will have a new and amazing ultra-realistic portfolio piece that can you be proud of. And what's more, you will have the skills and confidence to take an organic concept to a highly finished state and present your art director or client with both incredible beauty shots and a 3D model of the concept (which you or they could then have 3D printed)!  By learning these tools and skills, you will be dramatically increasing your market value as a concept artist and illustrator.

    Note that for every class, you are required to bring a Laptop equipped with a Wacom tablet as well as ZBrush, Keyshot and Photoshop.


    This is an advanced class. You should either have equivalent experience OR you should have taken the classes Drawing the Human Form and Analytical Sketching and Drawing Animals (if you want to do creatures) and Advanced Anatomy (recommended; though you can take it at the same time as this class).

    *Note that for every class, you are required to bring a Laptop equipped with a Wacom tablet as well as ZBrush, Keyshot and Photoshop.

    Language requirements: You need at least intermediate level English to take this class (the teacher will use many visual examples and there will usually be students in the class who speak French and can help you if you don't understand something).


    This long awaited ZBrush class is expected to fill up way before the registration deadline, so sign up early! $470$430.

    The Early Registration Deadline is Wednesday the 15th of Aug at 11:59 PM.


    • Learn the seven essential tools in ZBrush so you can digitally sculpt your concept quickly and accurately
    • Understand how to visually brainstorm your concepts directly in 3D
    • Acquire one of the most powerful pipelines from an industry veteran

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