View Full Version : Creating "Blueprint accurate" landscaping questions...

02-20-2016, 04:52 PM
I keep running into a problem when creating the surrounding areas in arch-viz projects. After wasting countless hours ( or days) fighting with different methods, I can only assume that my workflow is flawed from the start. Hopefully those who do this on the regular can help guide me in a better direction.

So here is how I currently create a "landscape" for a building:

I import the client provided PDF site plan into modeler. Remove any unnecessary geometry and use the leftover shapes to Boolean stencil a flat rectangle.
What I am left with is a nice and tidy "cut" version of the site plan that I can assign surfaces to ( ie: pavement, sidewalks, grass).

This has been working fine except for one problem. When I assign instancing to a specific surface, it wont accept the instance ( this is especially noticeable when creating grass). The only way I can get that to work is to apply "Triple" to connect all the points together. I cant subpatch it, because this rounds the square corners where the sidewalks meet the grass, making it hard to match things up.

Is there an easier way to assign instances to a mesh other than by surface? Perhaps via an image map or something I can create in photoshop?
I tried to use Ray Cast Geometry node to create a mask that "shuts off" the instances anywhere that was covered, allowing the grass to meet nice and clean against the edges of the sidewalks. This works to some degree, but it can be a bit of a PITA if the geometry isn't 100% clean ( in fact, it will bring your machine to a crawl... I found that out the hard way).

So I have to resort to just clipping out shapes, and triangulating the mesh so it retains the outside shape. It works, but it is a dirty way of doing things and a real pain if you need to adjust something later now the line. Also, if you need to create any kind of elevation in the surround grounds, it can be nearly impossible. For instance, in my current model there is a covered porte cochere that is higher than the surrounding elevations. The slope is tough to do when everything is cut all to hell.

I have LW CAD, so that helps a lot ( especially with creating curbing), but the rest of the stuff seems like I am just making a mess of things.

SO... my question to the rest of you is this: How do you create an "blueprint accurate" landscape areas for your buildings. Am I on the right track, or am I doing things the hard way?


02-20-2016, 05:50 PM
I think the issue is that you need more geometry for where you want to instances. You could try using the julienne tool to add cuts. Or you could create a giant polygon with a bunch of cuts, then use the outline of your lawn to stencil out the shape you need from that polygon.

02-20-2016, 06:50 PM
of course you can use an image map painted in photoshop, white for full density...black for none, put it in the weight channel in the instance tab, also works to use procedurals.
Then you can also use a weight map, so that is two options,

There are quite a lot of ways you can fix this, except from the above mentioned..you can also add a division plane as itīs own layer, and paint the weightmap over areas you want, and use the background layers as template bacground guidence.
then you could also simply use the pen tool in a background layer and draw the areas you want ..use those polygons instead...just make that layer hidden by cam or object dissolve it.

you could also select points from a divided plane and delete polygons, then use those points as intance points, jitter them a bit to avoid uniformity.

02-21-2016, 09:38 AM
<bangs head against desk>
Ug.. I didnt even think about using a weight map!! That actually works really well. I stenciled out what I needed in Modeler, created a UV, then exported that to Adobe Illustrator so I can use the geometry to create perfect clean maps. Exported those out of Illustrator as high res image files and BAM! Perfectly matched edges exactly where I want them.

Thanks again for bailing me out Prometheus!