First Spruce for the Forest

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McLeod

Well-Known Member
After seeing the cost of decent manufactured trees, I was convinced that I would either have to win the lottery or make my own forest. Making my own is the only real option, because the lottery gods seem to favor others. So I watched a few videos and read some post to learn how to make models of the spruce that are so common in my area.
My goal became making a tree that looked the part and used available materials that were on hand. I had plenty of #18 gauge copper wire, a bulk roll of bread-bag tie wire, lots of sawdust, paint, and a small bag of WS green turf. I twisted everything together today, and formed this kinda, maybe look like a spruce group of three:
:SpruceTree_03-06-2020 (1).JPGSpruceTree_03-06-2020 (2).JPG
These are my first trees, and like any beginner, I suppose I'm not quite satisfied yet.
I need to figure out a better way to add the foliage while leaving the painted sawdust bark exposed.
These will be good enough to fit inside a boreal forest, though. I've already learned a better way to make realistic trees for the exposed edges. Although, they will be time consuming to make, and I must wait for the thaw so I can enter our forest and collect natural materials. The snow is still 4' deep out there.
Guy
 

migalyto

Well-Known Member
Nice job on your first attempt. I have always found pine trees hard to get right. There are so many methods, but I haven't done satisfactory on any of the methods I've tried. I had the best of luck with the twisted wire (with a drill) and sisal rope. Yours look like after you get a few under your belt, there going to look really nice.
 

McLeod

Well-Known Member
Thanks fellas. I'm trying to make these look more realistic by picking off some fuzz to expose the painted trunks a bit better. It is tough, as I used a lot of spray adhesive. Tomorrow, I'll throw on a bit more paint to the trunks and try to highlight the top edges.
I'll clean them up; it's not in me to give up on stuff. Expect another photo when they are finished.
 

grove den

naturally natural trees
Those first spruce trees are not bad at all!
Did you consider to use some 12 Fibres and 2 mm on the brances and finaly add some fine turf?
Just add with a strainer and use sprayglue to fix the fibres on the small end of the wires.
Before adding the fibres spray the frame with a darkgree/olive colour first.

NspoorSparren6 cm.jpg
If you can get a Stat.gras aplicator you can make even more realistic spruce trees. "Big"ones: 8 inches (and more!)
!verse sparren 13-9-2019 4 klform mbbgroveden.jpg
and ( easy) small ones: max 4 inches( Made like the old "bottle brush" method"
202011971924_N scale trees JOS sm.jpgPhilipeSchyns.jpg

Jos
 

McLeod

Well-Known Member
Those first spruce trees are not bad at all!
Did you consider to use some 12 Fibres and 2 mm on the brances and finaly add some fine turf?
Just add with a strainer and use sprayglue to fix the fibres on the small end of the wires.
Before adding the fibres spray the frame with a darkgree/olive colour firs
Thank you, Jos. I am going to be experimenting with the techniques you mention. Thought about trying that with fiberglass filter fibers, and I do have a small bag of earth fine turf and a bunch of paint. I'm not done playing with trees just yet!
 

McLeod

Well-Known Member
I did a little bit more work to these White Spruce models. I pinched away some of the clumped up MS turf, high-lighted the branch tops with green zinc paint plus a sprinkle of chrome yellow, and finally touched up the trunk with burnt sienna oil. I feel they look better, but, I really have to work on the tree tops and the bottom trunk.
They seem to be reasonably comparable to the real thing I've photographed out my front window.
I might use them on the photo diorama for trains that I want to build, when the modelling stuff is delivered.
WhiteSruce_03-09-2020 (1).JPGWhiteSruce_03-09-2020 (2).JPG
Thanks for looking in. Guy
 

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McLeod

Well-Known Member
I edited my last post, because I had the same 3 tree picture from my first post in there by accident. Now I've placed the intended 3 tree photo in there, which shows how I've been picking on them.
 

Greg@mnrr

Section Hand
Plant them in tight clusters like most evergreens in nature are found for the best realism. Then use a store purchase tree(s) in the foreground. Most viewers attention will be on the foreground trees(s) and your trees will make up the back ground , which doesn't require a lot of detail to be effective.

Greg
 

McLeod

Well-Known Member
Plant them in tight clusters like most evergreens in nature are found for the best realism. Then use a store purchase tree(s) in the foreground. Most viewers attention will be on the foreground trees(s) and your trees will make up the back ground , which doesn't require a lot of detail to be effective.

Greg
I think the idea of purchasing realistic trees for the foreground is sound, except that the prices are just to high for the purchase of 1-3 'premium' trees in a package. At least, around NW Canada the prices are too high; especially if one must contend with the ludicrous shipping costs and exchange rates of today.
These 3 trees are only my first effort. However, I see no reason a person can't learn to make a realistic tree using everyday household junk and materials preserved from nature itself. Even if the method is not yet well documented or invented.

I mean to keep working at it, and in time, I will come up with a realistic tree. I've read good things about young asparagus shoots, so I'll likely be raiding the wife's garden this year.

Guy
 

grove den

naturally natural trees
Hello guy,

just a question about how you add the fine turf...
Do you use a strainer that will keep/sift the "bigger "particels of the turf from the smaller ones?
The smaller ones will look more like neeedles!
When adding without a strainer, just out of the box I think it looks still to coarse!
May be worth trying too!
An other thing that , may be , could change the look to a more realistic spruce : using thinner wire and less fibres and at the end may be some smaller ones! and just one "small tap/tick" against the strainer filled with fine turf....

Jos
 

McLeod

Well-Known Member
just a question about how you add the fine turf...
Do you use a strainer that will keep/sift the "bigger "particels of the turf from the smaller ones?
Thank you, Jos. I'm going to try a strainer for the turf and using smaller wire for the branches. So far I've just spread the turf with my fingers.

Actually, during my afternoon nap, I had a vision of putting a tree trunk into the fly-tying vise and tying on feather quill branches. I might be trying that out, too!

Guy
 



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