There are those times when you need trees/plant life in your scene, but either you don’t want to model it out yourself or you just don’t have the time. Not a problem. We are going to take a look at a couple of stand alone programs that allow you to create some amazing trees and ivy that are easily imported into your scene. Saving you a considerable amount of time that would have been spent if you modeled them yourself.
Arbaro First up is Arbaro. Arbaro is an easy to use tree generator that allows you to set various tree parameters, then export your tree as a Povray, DXF or Wavefront OBJ file. This makes it compliment nicely with Blender.
So, let’s make a simple tree.
1 Open Arbaro (fig 1)
Fig1 Arbaro Main Screen
2 There are various parameters you can adjust to customize your tree. For now you can just go with the defaults.
3 Time to export our tree. Push the first tree icon at the top of the screen.
4 An export dialog box will pop up.
5 Choose Wavefront object and choose where to save it.
6 Clik start.
Your tree is now ready to import into blender.
7 In Blender, go to File>Import>Wavefront (.obj).
8 Browse to where you saved your tree and select it.
9 A dialog box will pop up and give you some import options. The default options are good for now.
Your tree is now in Blender, ready for textures and placement in your scene. Arbaro alos comes with a variety of preset files for you to quickly create a tree.
10 In Arbaro, go to File>Open.
11 A dialog box will open showing you all the saved preset files.
12 Choose one, export your tree and import into Blender like before.
Fig2 Imported tree in blender
Here is a sample of black_tupelo imported in Blender.
You can download Arbaro at: http:// arbaro.sourceforge.net/
Second up is Ivy Generator. Ivy Generator allows you to grow ivy in your scene. The creator, (Thomas Luft), states that while Ivy Generator does not provide a biological simulation of growing ivy, it does provide a simple approach to producing complex and convincing vegetation that adapts to an existing scene.
The Ivy Generator imports and exports obj+mtl files.
Tim Ellis, (sonix), has written a great tutorial covering how to use Ivy Generator with Blender. The tutorial can be found at the Ivy Generator website as well as in the tutorial forum at www.blenderartists.org
On the right screen shot show three step ivy generation inside the Ivy Generator.
Ivy Generator, tutorials and Ivy Textures can be found. http://graphics.uni-konstanz.de/~luft/
Tim Ellis’s, (sonix), Ivy to Blender tutorial can alos be found here. http://blenderartists.org/forum/
Fig1 Starting spot placement.
Fig2 Generating the Ivy branches.
Fig3 Generating leaves.