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Marshallae

Wanted - proper 3D plant rendering

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The plant graphics are generally fine from a front or side perspective, but can look poor quality when viewing from an isometric position.  This includes things like items having a straight line base, which is then at a 45 degree angle on an isometric view making it look very unrealistic (see below screen shot and look at the base of the grass type plants).

 

If plants could be set to a direction to face, and the 3D image locks to that, it might help.  Or have genuine 3D models rather than 2D images like the current way, so that as you pan around them you actually see a different aspect of a plant rather than the same image just always facing you.

 

As a side note, the shadow rendering on some of these items is also very poor; again see furthest left grass on this image, the shadow starts half way across the shape and is a straight line.

Grass being squared off.png

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I agree, that image props are often not as aesthetic as desired, but they are a trade-off between realism and performance. If you had a 3D model of each plant the load on your computer would become unworkable pretty quickly - although Vectorworks 2020 has introduced much more efficient ways of handling the geometry it displays so maybe they are now more viable to display - the geometrical data (file size and memory consumption) would still be very large. 

 

There are 3D plant resources available. Add them to your plant definitions and see how whether they work for you or not. Use the VBvisual Plant Tool in the Visualisation palette. 

 

On 6/18/2020 at 12:45 AM, Marshallae said:

see furthest left grass on this image, the shadow starts half way across the shape and is a straight line.

This is because the Image Prop is made up of two identical perpendicular images, and in the screenshot the one of the image prop images is aligned with the light source and the other is perpendicular and creating a shadow from its base up (as it should be). One factor in this result is whether the image prop is set to, "Auto Rotate" towards the viewer. See 'Creating image prop objects' for a full explanation. 

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On 6/19/2020 at 1:06 AM, Jeremy Best said:

 

There are 3D plant resources available. Add them to your plant definitions and see how whether they work for you or not. Use the VBvisual Plant Tool in the Visualisation palette. 

 

 

Thanks Jeremy, I did check these out, and they are great (so much better than the upright flat 2D ones), but with only 20 odd trees/plants in there it feels like a bit of a half-effort at best on VWs part to produce them. If there were more of these with commonly used plants in garden design it would be a superb addition to vectorworks overall offering.  At the moment I find myself constantly frustrated with wanting to make good designs, having (relatively common) plants in mind and then them just not existing in VW.  It then means I can't show anyone a 3D view of a design at all and have to rely on top plan only which is a real shame.

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As a landscape architect that does a lot of work in desert environments, there are few plant resources that look correct or of good quality.  Fortunately, the plant tool allows us to place our own 3D geometry within a plant object.  I would suggest looking to a 3rd party provider for the plants you need.  It seems to be the only way for me to get close to what I need.

 

This was done in Vectorworks, animated in Twinmotion.  I purchased a few models, found some on 3D warehouse, and modeled what I couldn't quickly locate.  Plants in more temperate climates are easy to find from 3rd party suppliers.

 

 

 

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On 7/3/2020 at 5:33 AM, Marshallae said:

with only 20 odd trees/plants in there it feels like a bit of a half-effort at best on VWs part to produce them

 

Vectorworks don't produce the VBvisual plants. I believe they license them. Regardless of where they come from the more the software contains, the more it will cost for users. Given the presumably low-level demand for 3D plants it wouldn't be wise for VW Inc to include a large collection that only some people would use. 

 

There is also this plug-in for Vectorworks that can be used to create plants with specific characteristics. Maybe you can use it to create plants you can't find or model quickly, then add it to your plant objects as Jeff Prince mentioned. 

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I believe there is becoming a clear dichotomy between design/modeling apps and visualization/presentation tools like Lumion, Twinmotion, and others.  The trend is to become effortlessly sync-able with those visualization apps - and you should see how that works with Vectorworks live sync.

 

You can then use something like Plant Factory to either find/edit (or create from scratch)  your plant resources and then use your model in Vectorworks to drive a visualization app like any of the ones listed above.  I know this might seem like a hassle at first, but i promise once you get your workflow down its actually very simple and worth the effort in the presentations you can offer.

 

 

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