Polypaint allows painting on a model’s surface without first assigning a texture map. A texture map can be created at a later time, and the painted surface can be transferred to the map.

Polypainting offers significant advantages compared to standard workflow:

  • The resolution of the texture map need not be decided in advance. This is particularly valuable if you find you need more detailing on an area than you thought you would. Instead of repainting a new, larger texture map, you can simply transfer the existing surface painting to a new, larger map, with no rework necessary.
  • Similarly, the UV unwrapping need not be fixed in advance. If one unwrapping proves unsatisfactory, simply create a different unwrapping and transfer the surface painting to that map.
  • Removing UVs from your model frees up system resources and allows you to work with more polygons.

Getting Started

To polypaint your model you need to:

  • Make sure there are sufficient polygons to support the detail you want to paint
  • Turn on Colorize in the Tool > Polypaint sub-palette
  • Turn off Zadd or ZSub to avoid sculpting your model as you paint
  • Turn on Rgb and set RGB Intensity to 100
  • Pick a color and paint


Gradient Polypainting

It is possible to use a gradient color when polypainting a model. This gradient is a mix of two colors: The main color is the default color available in the color picker, blended with the secondary color, enabled when the gradient button is pressed.

Gradient painting

Standard polypainting and on the right with Gradient on

The Gradient switch is in the Color Palette or below the color picker in the standard ZBrush User Interface.