Trees for the river scene

Discussion in 'Photos & Videos' started by Gary Pfeil, Apr 8, 2003.

  1. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Hi all, I've finally gotten to the point in the developement of my river scene I needed to make some trees before I could proceed. There are some flowers in my wifes garden I thought would provide usable materials for the trees. Unfortunately I don't know what they are called, but my wife will find out for me. They have good and bad points but rather than tell you what I find wrong with them I would like honest opinions on their appearance. And what could be done to improve them. First, a shot of the general scene.

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  2. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Here's an unattractively lit close up shot to show the details better.

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  3. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Last one. This shows the leaf material to good advantage. It is made by Selkirk Scenery. I simply use spray adhesive to attach it to the dried up flower heads beneath it.

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  4. McFortner

    McFortner Member

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    Looks very good to me. What did you do, paint the stems grey first for the bark, or leave it its natural color?

    Michael
  5. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

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    Gary,
    Look good to me, but you'd want to mix in some other forms of tree. The variety, will give the scene a more natural look.
    Pete
  6. jon-monon

    jon-monon Active Member

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    Looks great Gary, love the leaves. Doesn't look like ground up foam. Trees may or may not show roots or the stump swelling out at the bottom where the roots start, depending on species. Maples can have roots above ground 10 ft away on a small tree.
  7. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

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    Gary, I think what might be bothering you about those trees is how "solid" they look. I know that when I model trees (which i hasten to add is not all that often) I'm always looking for an open, "leafy" appearance.

    I think that if you're using real plants for the armature, and I have to say those plants do look quite nice as does your paint-job, you should dip it in ground foam first, to sort of build up the understory. Then, if you get a package of Woodland Scenics Fine Leaf Foliage, which is ground foam sprinkled onto very fine branches, you can poke those into the more massed areas of your existing tree.

    :cool: Val
  8. Greg Elems

    Greg Elems Member

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    Real good start there Gary. Like Val said, "the trees look solid." That aside, the over all the impression is very good. Depending on the kind of tree and time of year, they aren't really too far off. Makes me think of mid summer down by the river. Trees will be fully leafed out and have a more solid look. Keep up the good work.

    Greg Elems
  9. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Thanks to all for the comments so far. The plant BTW is sedum. It requires some surgery. Michael, I pretty much have left the stems their natural color. Due to the process of using CAA to glue together branch material, I got that charactiristic white color from the CAA running down the trunk. Where it was particularly bad I dry brushed some roof brown, but I know it needs a little further attention. Due to being very fragile, the armature won't take much in the way of drybrushing and I don't want to spray it. Pete, variety is the spice of life, tis true, do you mean trees by other methods or trying to alter the construction using the sedum? Or both? Jon, the roots are a good idea, I will try to utilize Tysons approach. The Selkirk Scenery leaves are fantastic, I like them much more than foam. Val and Greg, you are right, it is the solid look that detracts from the overall appearance. The sedum has flower heads very tightly packed on top, but little to none on the sides. On my next attempts I will thin out the heads prior to construction.
    Any further comments would be appreciated. Thanks.

    Gary
  10. shamus

    shamus Registered Member

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    Hi Gary,
    The trees look fine to me my friend, you could also try spraying a cheap hair spray onto it and adding a little darker green foliage to it. The trees will also smell nice :D

    Shamus
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  11. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

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    Gary,
    I was thinking other methods, the use of one type of armature, tends to produce look alike trees. You could do some minor surgery on the sedum to vary the appearance, but other methods would provide the greater variety.
    Commercial trees, even the not so good looking ones, can be made to look good enough for background, if not foreground trees.
    Pete
  12. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

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    Gary, here is what the Woodland Scenics tree bits do to dress up an otherwise too clumpy tree. The one on the left is straight out of the package. The foliage is a solid mass of green foam. The one on the right has had nothing more done to it than sticking a couple WS branches through the foam. Already it looks better.

    I have used Bridalwreath branches for tree armatures and they tend to have fairly dense clusters of flowers like your sedum. Using the WS tree bits raises the top and opens it up a lot.

    BTW that scene looks great. The trunks are very realistic and I love the path leading down the hill.

    cheers
    :D Val

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  13. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

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    Gary those are good looking trees! The only thing I would do differently is to use at least 3 colors of "leaves" on each tree, that will also do wonders for the "solid" look. All in alll though those are real nice trees. Hmmmmmm, wonder who I know who has sedium bushes in their yard and aren't home during the day???? :D
  14. jimnrose

    jimnrose Member

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    Gary, great tree construction; thanks for sharing. Take care, Jim
  15. Casey Feedwater

    Casey Feedwater Member

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    Gary, I really like the appearance of the Selkirk Scenery leaves. I think I'll have to try to locate some and try it.

    Some of the others have mentioned openness and variation in color and species. Here are a couple of photos that show how I try to achieve those effects.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
  16. Tyson Rayles

    Tyson Rayles Active Member

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    Mike you trying to slip in some proto photos are you?????:p :D
  17. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Casey, That first photo is unbelievable. Is it really amodel? The angle, taken looking up thru the trees to the sky, is fantastic. Have you written about how you made them? Here is a shot of another type tree, made by inserting sedum branches into holes drilled in a piece of stripwood which was roughly rounded by scraping with a knife. I think a little more attention to the trunk would yiel a nice airt tree. On this one, I removed the flower heads completely. BTW, when you rub the flower heads between your fingers they fall apart and yield nice ground cover.

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  18. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Thought you might like to see what Sedum looks like.

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  19. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    Thought I'd throw in an aerial view of progress on the scene.

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  20. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

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    There are several smaller trees in the lower center of the above photo, they are simply airbrushed "natural candy tuft" from the dry flower section of a craft store. I just cut the ends off, no other work involved.

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