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ZRemesher: Aging and Bevelling on the Cheap

Happy Canadian Thanksgiv’ering. Now that I’m full of turkey I’m back to work on another piece with old rock objects which uses a workflow I thought I’d share. Any time you make aged assets, you are pretty sure you’re going to have to sculpt, bevel and smooth them to simulate erosion, breakage and wear. But sculpting them inevitably gets in you into issues with topology – you want to have quadrangles for sculpting but your modelling workflow might have forced you to use a mix of triangles and quads to get your model. I ran into exactly this kind of thing today when I wanted to break and age a Greek-style column. I did the break in Maya with the excellent Fracture FX, which does localized smashing with results that are more convincing than just doing a Voronoi break on the whole mesh:

But the topology generated at the end was very sculpting unfriendly. So I took it into ZBrush and solved two problems at once with the amazing ZRemesher, which has become a staple of my workflow since it’s introduction in version 4R5. If you set the poly count to something high enough to give you detail but low enough to give you smoothing, it will instantly give you a great, slightly smooth base mesh with topology that is perfect for refinement and further smoothing:

Sorry about the wait to complete the remeshing. I’m on my laptop and forgot to edit that out. Anyway, that’s all there is to it. Once you’ve worked it up a little more, it’s aged pretty well in a small amount of time:

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