The Tree Maker is a feature of IRender nXt which allows you to create definitions for Fractal Trees, save them in a library as .ArPlant files and then use them as plants in IRender nXt.
It uses the nXt Tree Editor to create custom trees, stores a 2D representation of the tree in SketchUp and renders it as a full, fractal, 3D Tree. You can create an 3D image of the Side view of the tree or, optionally, an image of the top of view of the tree for use in top view presentations of the site.
Tree Editor usage
Launch Tree Editor
Set the type from the File/New menu at the top.
There are four tree types - Standard, Conifer, Broad Crown, Palm and Complex
(Do not use Groundcover with RpTreeMaker).
Each has different setting on the tabs of the tree editor.
Play with the various settings to see what they do.
Change the Parameters and see the results at the left.
Foliage and Flowers
You can click on the leaf image to select a different image.
You can also add an image to be used as flowers or fruit
Leaf and Flower Images
You can select new leaves, trunk, etc. by clicking on the image.
You can also add your own leaves and bark to the Plant Image folder and use them for your custom trees.
Click 'Start' on the RayTrace drop down menu to see a sample rendering of the tree with foliage.
Use the mouse and scroll-wheel to on the image to set a new view before starting rendering if desired.
Create a tree image
After defining the tree shape and parameters:
- Enter a name for the component.
- Enter a resolution for the image stored in SketchUp.
- enter the Shadow Mask options
- Use Advanced Settings... for other settings.
- Click Start to render the tree
After generating the first image, you can change the resolution or rotation and generate a new image by clicking Remake Image.
- Click Save Tree Image when done.
- Tree Rotation - lets you rotate the tree in the image.
- (Useful for angled, or non-symmetrical trees)
- Camera Height - lets you raise or lower the camera for different effects.
- Top View Height - The, optional, Top View Image will be placed this far above the ground.
- Make Criss-Cross images - I checked then two images at 90 degrees will be placed for the tree.
- Background mode - this does not effect the final image when saved to SketchUp.
- Illumination factor - alter if tree is too light or too dark.
- HDRi sky rotation - will effect how the HDRi sky illuminates the tree.
- Use Defaults - reset to default settings
For IRender nXt users, the RpTreeMaker tree will automatically re-render as a full, fractal, 3D tree.
IRender nXt users should make their tree images at the lowest resolution to save time and keep the SketchUp model fast and small. After the tree is re-rendered the original image resolution will not effect the final image.
The 2D Trees will work properly with SketchUp, including shadows, and most other rendering packages. Users of rendering some other products have discovered that they need to explode the tree component, explode the image entity into a face, and remake to tree component in order to get the tree to render properly.
Note: If your alpha transparent images do not display well in SketchUp, you can adjust the quality (vs speed) of Alpha Image display.
- Set it to 'nicer' for the best tree display.
Saving LIbraries of Trees
If you save the SketchUp Component of your tree onto the disk, you can then import it as a component into another model and it will contain the information for the tree contained in the component and render as a .ArPlant nXt Plant.
You can also place several tree in a SketchUp model, and then save all the the tree components as a SketchUp "Local Collection" - which is a library of components you can place in other models.
If you want to share your trees, you can place them in the SketchUp 3D Warehouse.
Then, anyone who downloads your tree component can render it with IRender nXt.
- The Tree Editor allows you to choose from four types of trees (more coming soon.)
- .ArPlant files can be saved and loaded in the editor.
- .ArPlant files can be loaded into SketchUp for rendering.
Some Limitations on Trees (still numerous)
- Shrubs may be difficult to do in the current interface.
- We don’t have templates for things like Herbaceous Plants yet.
- You can’t change anything about the trees at the moment.