Tree Building Tips?

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Tree Building Tips?

Post by Kakuloo on Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:13 pm

You know when you have a few days where you just don't have time for playing games? D= That's me for the past few days. T_T

But nothing can stop me from THINKING about them! >=D

As I was thinking about playing on the Treecrafter server, I realized I'm not at all sure how to make my tree look lovely. O_O I'm good at squares, and I can make okay cylinders but how does one go about making a sweet, asymmetrical, realistic looking tree? =P

Any tips as I lay my foundation?
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Re: Tree Building Tips?

Post by Lord_Dust_Bunny on Mon Apr 16, 2012 4:28 pm

Try making a start as a cylinder. Do NOT correct mistakes, use mistakes as the new wall. You can also make small knots in the side to simulate real wood. Hope this helps!
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Re: Tree Building Tips?

Post by Mailleweaver on Mon Apr 16, 2012 6:03 pm

I found it's useful to start with a rough circle and "rotate" every few layers. Do 3 or 4 layers the same, and then rotate the pattern one block. Sometimes this will keep blocks going straight up, and sometimes it will make them hang out over a space that was empty on the last layer.

Every now and then, throw in an imperfection on purpose -- a bulge or a recess -- and rotate it like the rest of the tree for a few times before smoothing it back out.

And don't forget to make the rings smaller every now and then as you go up. Natural trunks aren't anywhere near the same diameter top to bottom, and the bottom often has quite a bit more "flare" to it compared to the steady taper of the rest of the trunk.

This method is easiest to do with a fairly large diameter tree. You'll probably want to come up with some other way if you're making one smaller than 15 or so blocks across.

When you get to branches, start by making a single row of blocks sticking out with the general shape of the main part of the branch (meaning the droop or lift you want it to have) and make it just a tad shorter than you want the finshed branch to be. Then go back and make the side braches coming off of it in a semi-random fashion. Try to make the branches so that they don't shade the lower ones too much; reach for empty spaces with them. Once you have the skeleton of the branch, round it out using the skeleton as the bottom of the branch, not the center of it.
Here's a cross-sectional example of what I mean by rounding it:

    O=air
    H=log

    3. OOHHOO
    2. OHHHHO
    1. OOHHOO
Your original branch skeleton should be in level 1. If you try to round it out with your skeleton in level 2 (or whatever the center level is), it's extremely difficult to place the bottom part of the branch to get it rounded out.
And again, don't forget to taper the branches like you tapered the trunk.

Use leaves to finalize the shape of the branches. Since player-placed leaves don't decay, they don't have to strictly follow the rule that leaves have to be within a certain distance of a log; you can "fudge" a little with them. For example, if a branch needs to be a tad longer or a tad wider but a big ol' fat log is too much, just use an extra leaf block or two.

If you want to see some real examples, check out my birch (X 2304, Z -350) on the old map.
(You can download it from here to explore in singleplayer.)
I only barely started on the leaves, so you can see the branches very well. And notice the extra root flare at the bottom.
I also made the Christmas tree pine in the old map's market. You can see some pictures of it here or find it in-game when you look for the birch.

Check out other people's trees in the old map, too. You can find their coordinates in the Old - Trees and Where to Find Them thread.
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Re: Tree Building Tips?

Post by Blazinfox555 on Thu Apr 19, 2012 10:36 am

On another note, plants use something similar to the Fibonacci sequence to make sure that they don't have self shaded leaves. The best way to get branches and stuff to look more tree-ish would probably be to have about 137.5 degrees between branches, going around one direction only on your tree.

A great video (or two) to show this and that math and plants are generally amazing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ahXIMUkSXX0

Just watch that and the next video (haven't seen the 3rd one myself yet so I don't know what it'll say/do/show).
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Re: Tree Building Tips?

Post by Kakuloo on Thu Apr 19, 2012 12:19 pm

OHMIGOSH.

Why weren't my math classes more like this? O_O She talks really fast...but I'm getting everything perfectly. O_O

Thanks for the awesome find! =D
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Re: Tree Building Tips?

Post by Rysiion on Sun Apr 22, 2012 3:46 pm

Blazinfox555 wrote:On another note, plants use something similar to the Fibonacci sequence to make sure that they don't have self shaded leaves. The best way to get branches and stuff to look more tree-ish would probably be to have about 137.5 degrees between branches, going around one direction only on your tree.

A great video (or two) to show this and that math and plants are generally amazing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ahXIMUkSXX0

Just watch that and the next video (haven't seen the 3rd one myself yet so I don't know what it'll say/do/show).
I just spent half an hour watching those videos, and MY MIND... BLOWN! Shocked Shocked Shocked
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