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Sculpting a Dragon with ZBrush

with Maarten Verhoeven


In this lecture, Maarten Verhoeven demonstrates how to create a highly detailed dragon in ZBrush. The entire process is thoroughly discussed from the initial block-in to final rendering. Beginning with ZSpheres, Maarten blocks out the major forms of the creature’s primary shapes including additional subtools for elements like horns, teeth, claws and wings. Then with the overall shapes in place, he retopologizes the dragon in preparation of sculpting the finer details. Various techniques are shared that accelerate the process of sculpting these details through the use of stencils and alphas. A detailed rock base is then created and the creature is put into its final pose using Transpose Master. In conclusion, Maarten sends the dragon to Keyshot for the final rendering of his finished digital sculpt. Artists of any level, interested in learning from a master ZBrush sculptor, will learn myriad techniques both in technical workflows and informed design strategies.

Duration: 3h 53m

Format: HD 1280x720

Maarten Verhoeven

Freelance Digital Sculptor, Monsters & Media

Maarten Verhoeven is a freelance digital sculptor with a love for the dark and weird. He specializes in work for 3D sculptures for concept art, fine art, films, commercials, prototypes, designer toys, and collectibles. With a background in art, he handles many different aspects of production, from original concept sculpts, high-res assets, engineering, and 3D prints. For the past 10 years, he’s working from Belgium as a freelance ZBrush artist, contributing his talents worldwide to various companies, publications and projects.

  • "Maarten is a tremendous sculptor and one of the masters in the digital field. From sculpting from life or imagination he has a great ability to twist the realm of reality and still make it believable. Each new work Maarten completes pushes the bar for digital sculpting higher; even a small insight into his creative process and techniques is worth it's weight in gold."

    - Joseph Drust
    Artist/Creative Development Manager at Pixologic, INC.

  • "Maarten's signature style is distinctive and easily recognised from afar. His brilliant portrait busts, figurines and creatures designs have it all. It’s always a pleasant surprise to see what he’s been working on; from a disturbing monstrous creature to erotic pin-up art to legendary film characters, he emphasises the shapes and poses perfectly for the mood and in his own unique way."

    - Rudy Massar
    The Moving Picture Company

  • "I have followed Maarten's work for years now. It never ceases to amaze me how stunning his work is. Each sculpture has its own sense of life. His work display a strong sense of gesture, weight, and most importantly character. I'm incredibly excited to learn from from his lectures."

    - Bryan Wynia
    Senior Character Artist

  • Trust me when I tell you: There is so much you are going to learn from Maarten. When it comes to learning ZBrush, Maarten is always one of the artists I recommend reaching out to for classes. His work is so inspiring to me and the ZBrush community. I feel like every new piece he posts keeps pushing the envelope of creativity and showcasing what you can do in the digital art world.

    - Paul Gaboury
    3D Product Development Manager at Pixologic Inc

  • Maarten is one of the most proficient digital sculptors working in the profession. His unique talents for storytelling and visual design complement his technical skills and software knowledge, [which are] reflected in his impressive body of both professional and personal work.

    - James W Cain
    Digital Sculptor

  • Maarten is a reference in the industry, really talented, polyvalent, and dedicated. He has a strong artistic and creative eye and pushes constantly his limits. Maarten has been an asset in many successful studios; he has a great sense of professionalism that makes him an asset in any project/production, artistic and production-wise.

    - Cedric Seaut
    Art Director & Co-Founder at Keos Masons