of course youre right, no matter where one takes it,
one always has the DEM.
(got MAXed up for a sec ... ...
but, just btw, does MAX export DEM ?
And you're right, it does look cranky, but since Terragen has no option for vegetation representation at all (sadly), one is ocasionally lead astray.
However, for Terragen, there is a small app, called Terramaker, which allows you to implement such artefacts into an existing terrain, and adjust their specific height acording to the underlying landscape.
Its ok for faking satellite footage, since one often only needs the shadows of forest blocks, and there is no poly issue at all.
As long as you dont come any closer than a mile or two to these things, they dont look too bad.
Youre right tho in pointing that it works better in faking pointed conifer than rounded broadleaf canopies.
I wish i was better in creating these structures (blocks of spheres etc.) with PS from scratch, that would improve my workflow a lot.
Im such a looser in PS.
For really long distance POVs, like fake satellite footage, i had considered TerraGen. (this is where the fish-scale forests come in).
For closer POVs, im planning to use VUE (where the work consists rather in producing the apropiate trees).
When having to render large amounts of trees, the way to go, lately, seems to be VUE5I, whose ecosystem technology handles poly plant models as part of the texture, and populates surfaces automatically with lo poly models ....
Im playing with it since a few weeks and as far at that particular issue goes, its quite impressive.
This particular tree-job has to do with showing precolumbian brazilian landscapes, which means *a lot* of forests ..
But my topic here is more general, it has to do with my limitations in Photoshop, really ...
Last edited by doonee; 08-10-2005 at 07:08 PM.
As far as I know, MAX doesn't really use any form of DEM data at all. All it does is offset the vertexs of a mesh based on the lightness values of a grayscale image (any image really, but grayscale gives the best results). There's nothing to export since MAX is already using the grayscale visual representation of the DEM data, which must have already been created.
I suppose one could write a script that would report the offset of each vertex in the mesh, determine a lightness value at each vertex based on that offset, and render out a 2D image of those values. But that's beyond my abilities.
I haven't used VUE51, but from your description it does sound like it's the best solution for you concerning the vegetation.
Here's a quick tutorial on how to make a grayscale "sphere" in Photoshop:
1. Make a circular selection on a new layer.
2. Select the radial gradient tool.
3. With white or light gray as the foreground color, click and hold where you want the highlight then drag out past the marching ants of the circular selection. Let go of the mouse button. You should now have a basic shaded sphere.
See attached images.
i dont thinks thats necessary either, but thats where i got stuck (maxed up) for a sec with my answer...
(VUE5I ecosystem showcase)
about the greyscale spheres:
how do i control whther the shading of the sphere is centered ?
how can i tell that the shading is really sphere-like ?
see examples 2 and 3 from the left in primitives.jpg (in attachment)
as for the terragen distant fish-forests, i attached a quick (lofi) example ...
thanks for the help!
I took a look at the "Silent Springs" images. Some very nice stuff there. I bookmarked the site so I can read more about when I have more time. Thanks for the link.
To center the shading, your initial click point should be the center of the circle, then drag to the edge of the circle selection, but don't pass it, and let go. That should give you the example of the 2nd sphere from the left in your image and the 1st example on my last image.
When making the circle selection, holding the shift key will keep the selection perfectly circular, and holding the alt key at the same time will draw the circle selection from the center of where you click.
To help you determine the center of the cirlce, you can use guides. To use them, first make sure you have turned on the rulers (View>Rulers). Once they're on, make the circle selection. Then, click on the top ruler and drag down to create a guide, it will snap to the edges and center of the selection. Do the same from the left. If you can't see the guides or they aren't snapping, make sure EXTRAS is checked in the view menu, and that GUIDES is checked in the SHOW submenu. Also make sure that SNAP is checked in the view menu as well as GUIDES, LAYERS, and DOCUMENT BOUNDS in the SNAP TO submenu. With all that done, you'll easily see the center of the circle and if you click close enough to the center, the end of the gradient will snap to the center.
Then, once you have one circle made on its own layer. Instead of doing all that again, just duplicate the layer as many times as you need and position them. You can duplicate a layer by dragging the selected layer down to the new layer icon at the bottom of the layers palette.
Last edited by Racc Iria; 08-11-2005 at 09:43 AM.
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