Skip to main content

Sculptris : a free 3D sculpting software

Scultpris is a free, cross-platform (Win+OSX) 3D modeling and texturing software, from Pixologic, famous for their ZBrush sculpturing top software. It allows you to work with e.g. Wacom tablets and can handle both 3D meshes and the texturing, although you can combine this with Photoshop and other 3D software.

After some minutes dabbling with a small Wacom tablet
Info on (current version is Alpha 6, indicating it is not fully finished)

Real example from Sculptris website (artist: Barry Croucher)
While the ZBrush software is seen as the logical "next" step, when you outgrow Sculptris, it is already quite complete:
  • dynamic tesselation (refinement of the mesh when sculpting) to support details in the regions which require it, without having to overwhelm the rest of the model with more smooth, flat surfaces.
  • painterly-like interface, dark color scheme, icons, lots of rounded edges. If you use this only occasionally, this might be a disadvantage, though.
  • several brushes and modeling aids (e.g. symmetry mode).
  • custom brushes, based on patterns with alpha channels.
  • masking support, to protect areas of your model.
  • automatic UV creation, which ensures that the model has a well-structured set of texture coordinates, to assist the texturing on a usable texture map. This will also help with imports in other 3D software, e.g. for rendering or animation.
  • support for texture projecting and bump-map painting.

This kind of software (Pixologic Sculptris and ZBrush, Autodesk MudBox) is mostly used in organic character modeling and design, but nothing prevents you from trying to find a use for it in architectural modeling and visualization. BodyPaint (as included with Maxon Cinema4D) is different, as it is a "paint-on-model" software, allowing you to work as if you where in Photoshop but on the texture map and live on the 3D model. ZBrush and the like will actually model and modify the geometry as well (the mesh).


  1. Very easy to use without specific skills.Like modelling clay under hand.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Improve usage of BIM during early design phases

When I was collecting ideas for a book chapter on BIM (that seemed to never have emerged after that), I collected 10 ideas, which I believe still reflect good recommendations to improve the usage of BIM during the early design phases. These ideas are related to BIM software, but you can apply them in any flavor, as long as you can model with Building Elements, Spaces and have control over representation. Introduction This article gives an overview of several recommendations and tips, to better apply BIM applications and BIM methodologies, in the context of the early design phases. Many of these tips are applicable in any BIM application and they are based on experience gathered from teaching, researching and using BIM software. Sometimes they could help software developers to improve the workflow of their particular BIM implementation. Tip 1 : Gradually increase the amount of information In the early design phases, the architect makes assumptions and lays out the main design in

Getting BIM data into Unity (Part 9 - using IfcConvert)

This is part 9 of a series of posts about getting BIM data into Unity. In this post, we’ll discuss the IfcConvert utility from the IfcOpenShell Open Source IFC Library to preprocess an IFC model for integration with Unity. This is (finally?) again a coding post, with some scripts which are shared to build upon. Conversion of IFC into Unity-friendly formats The strategy with this approach is that you preprocess the IFC-file into more manageable formats for Unity integration. Most Web-platforms do some sort of pre-processing anyway, so what you see in your browsers is almost never an IFC-file, but an optimised Mesh-based geometric representation. However, it wouldn’t be BIM-related if we’d limit ourselves to the geometry, so we will parse the model information as well, albeit using another, pre-processed file. IFC to Wavefront OBJ I used a test IFC-model and used the IfcConvert-utility converted it into OBJ en XML formats. The default way to use it is very simple:

Getting BIM data into Unity (Part 8 - Strategies to tackle IFC)

This is part 8 of a series of posts about getting BIM data into Unity. In this post, we’ll discuss IFC as a transfer format towards Unity. As with the previous post, this is not a coding post, although hints and examples are provided. Open BIM and IFC Everybody who ever met me or heard me present on a conference or BIM-lecture will not be surprised to hear that I’m a strong believer in the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC), an open standard, with already two versions published as an ISO standard, being IFC2x2 and IFC4 (but surprisingly not IFC2x3 which is widely used). In the ideal world, this would be the format to use to transfer BIM data into another environment, such as Unity. So what are our options? Looking in the Unity Asset Store Assimp is a library which supports multiple formats, including IFC.   I did a few attempts, but alas without any success. It is possib