Section 6 (Part 3): Learn 3D Modelling – The Complete Blender Creator (Udemy) Course

Alas, I have made it to the end of Section 6 of The Complete Blender Creator Course on Udemy. Looking back, there was an incredibly large amount of material covered for this section. Modelling Mr. Rabbit took up the bulk of the project while creating the environment for him – despite being lean -required many iterations (i.e.- very low quality test renders) in order to pull the final scene together. As a re-cap on where I had left off, here is a look at a high quality render from my previous blog post:

rabbitrender (CPU, 100 smp, 586 min 37 sec)

The next task was to add a plant and a tree to the scene. At this time, the Sapling Tree Generator was introduced and I can’t describe this tool better myself than the course instructor when he says it is (as with many of Blender’s capabilities) “extremely powerful”. To give you an idea of how the sapling tree generator works in Blender, I will run through a quick example on how to construct/model a basic tree and as you are reading and visualizing with the help of associated pictures, I want you to try and visualize how the system could work to create a small plant such as a bush.

Let’s begin. Once enabled, the sapling tree generator add-on in Blender works by first adding a curve named, “Sapling tree gen”. In the operator panel, the Geometry settings shows up by default. A stick figure tree is shown in the 3D viewport and by clicking bevel, the trunk/stem and branches appear to look 3D. Here, the resolution can also be increased. In addition, a Secondary Branching system can also increase the distribution and number of rings on the tree trunk as well as to increase/decrease the overall size of the tree:

saplingtreegen(geometry)

Next, under the Branch Radius settings, the thickness or radius of the trunk and branches can be adjusted. The base of the trunk can also be tapered and flared out to allow for roots to be sculpted outwards if desired:

saplingtreegen(branchradius)

Furthermore, under the Branch Growth settings, the length, angle, and curvature of the branches can be adjusted:

saplingtreegen(branchgrowth)

Afterwards, under the Branch Splitting settings, branches can be split to multiple levels and the number of branches at each level can be increased/decreased (think tree diagrams). The base/trunk can be split into multiple levels as well and its splitting height can also be altered.

saplingtreegen(branchsplitting)

Finally, under the Leaves settings, we can add basic polygonal leaves (i.e.- rectangular, hexagonal, etc..), increase/decrease the number of leaves in the branches, and/or adjust the angle of the leaves:

saplingtreegen(leaves)

How about that tree generator! Extremely powerful indeed… So, have you tried to picture how this could work in order to create a a small plant? Yes, in fact, the sapling tree generator was used to help model a bush for the final scene with Mr. Rabbit. But there were a few extra tricks employed to construct something more original (rather than just simply using the tree generator). Using most of the knowledge that was learned earlier in modelling Mr. Rabbit along with reference pictures, I successfully modelled a small bush:

saplingtreegen(plantbush)

At this stage, I felt I had just about all the elements I wanted and had initially conceptualized in the design for the final scene. Before a final render, I added a couple of things and made a few alterations: changed the skybox and adjusted the lamp lighting, applied a pink material for Mr. Rabbit’s ears and nose, added a second tree, altered the landscape. And so without further ado, here is a full HD render of the final scene:

rabbitfinalrender (CPU, 100 smp, 16 hour 46 min, 1920x1080 HD)

Looking pretty sharp, huh? But perhaps too sharp?! Evidently, one final requirement and learning task for this section was to render a DOF (Depth of Field) image. Similar to what was done in section 4 for the chess scene but in the Cycles Render engine this time, a DOF was added for the camera, and thus, created a blurring effect for the tree in the foreground along with the tree and grass in the backdrop. And so again, here is another 100% uncompressed, 1080p long render of the final scene:

finalrabbitscene (CPU, 120 smp, 1080p, 24h render)

Overall, I am pretty content and proud with how this render turned out. Thinking back on all that I have learned so far in this course and looking at the course discussion board, I cannot help but think of all the things I can do now and how I can improve this scene if I just put more time and effort into it. However, in the spirit of trying to complete this course by the end of next month, I feel that it is time to move to the next section. Section 7, entitled “Game Asset Pack”, will be a pretty exciting one for me as no doubt, it will pertain to game design – something I am very passionate about as of late. I look forward to diving into this section and writing my next blog post! Thanks for reading!

– Taklon

2 thoughts on “Section 6 (Part 3): Learn 3D Modelling – The Complete Blender Creator (Udemy) Course

    1. Thank you for the comment! It is quite a comprehensive course! You do game design? That’s really awesome; it’s something I’m looking at getting into. :]

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