Author Topic: Trees  (Read 3352 times)

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Alaska Railroader

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Trees
« on: March 18, 2013, 08:40:52 PM »
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Before I get zapped for not checking the archives please know I have. I just don't have enough time in the day to read it all before talking about this, if that is acceptable....
I not, go ahead and zap me

Its spring and my son moved out of the storage room (what, everyone doesn't keep an offspring in their storeroom occasionally??) and I rummaged through my scenery supplies. I'm itching to get back to making my deciduous trees again but this time in N scale. Hard to believe but I actually love making them.

Is anyone as crazy as me and use real crushed leaves for their trees? I use the weeds that you have to boil, dip in matte medium, and let dry well before ever touching with color. The results using real foliage as opposed to ground foam is astounding. It isn't a new concept for sure but an incredible choice, especially for front of the layout trees. Also, I plan to do a coat of the real stuff over any trees I have as fillers. In that room I found my stash of crushed leaves and by using different, yet natural, colors the possibilities are endless.

Any tree stories out there? (excluding the ground foam methods) Note: no ground foam was harmed in any way in the making of the trees you see below. However, some real leaves were baked and crushed for the cause.
Hmmm, I might actually start my first N scale layout.......



John

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Re: Trees
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2013, 08:44:32 PM »
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Trees look good .. also, a number of folks use old dried leaves for ground cover as well .  you might also try tea leaves from a tea bag

Ed Kapuscinski

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Re: Trees
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2013, 09:06:14 PM »
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Real crushed leaves?

Me gusta.


That said, here's my treatise on them.
http://conrail1285.com/news.asp?storyid=57



Hornwrecker

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Re: Trees
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2013, 09:17:51 PM »
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Nice trees.  How do you color the ground up leaves?

Thanks for the link Ed, I'm almost ready to start making super trees, and this helps.  I'm trying to do early spring, so I'm thinking of using very fine, pale green to try to look like buds and opening leaves.  Still haven't figured out how to do redbrick and rhododendrons.  Need to find some magenta/pink ground foam.  I can use the white WS flowers for the dogwoods.

I also use the crumbs from my cheap pipe tobacco, along with sieved tea leaves; green and black, for my dead leaves
Bob

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Re: Trees
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2013, 09:25:25 PM »
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Ed, that shot of Max's hippo on your layout is my favorite model RR picture ever.

Josh Surkosky

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Alaska Railroader

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Re: Trees
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2013, 09:29:49 PM »
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Yes, Super Trees, that's what I used for the "armatures" I didn't color any of the crushed leaves, they are all naturally shaded depending on the foliage you choose. Some of my favorite shades come from the leaves of real shrubs and bushes. Armatures yes, I used various camo colored spray paint.

It would take a lot of tea and tobacco grounds to cover a forest full of trees would it not? Leaves are plentiful and are free.

One more thing, gotta be careful how you use this term, some members might not take too kindly to it  :o  8)
try tea leaves from a tea bag

Catt

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Re: Trees
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2013, 09:40:23 PM »
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Quote
It would take a lot of tea and tobacco grounds to cover a forest full of trees would it not? Leaves are plentiful and are free.

Karin, you can get a lot of free tea leaves by just drinking more tea.The neat thing is they work well for both N and Z.Plus the empty tea bag takes up less space in the trash.
Johnathan (Catt) Edwards
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Grande Valley Railway
100% Michigan made

bbussey

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Re: Trees
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2013, 09:52:34 PM »
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I've seen real pulverized dried leaves used to represent a ground cover of fallen leaves, but this is new for me.  Looks good.
 
Bryan Busséy
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www.bbussey.net


tom mann

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Re: Trees
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2013, 09:59:16 PM »
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This is one of those ideas that make you wonder why you didn't hear it before. :D 

So do you need to add some kind of support to the super tree armatures?  Like aquarium filter material?

Color look great!  No David Popp yellow!


Alaska Railroader

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Re: Trees
« Reply #9 on: March 19, 2013, 03:00:58 AM »
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This is one of those ideas that make you wonder why you didn't hear it before. :D

You have  8)

So do you need to add some kind of support to the super tree armatures?  Like aquarium filter material?


I didn't use anything which I think adds to the realism. Don't remember how many times (1 maybe 2) but I would go back after they were dry and spritz more diluted Matte Medium on the trees and add more crushed leaves. BTW, I always backed the real leaves in the oven at about 200-250 degrees before crumpling them.

One thing I look forward to in modeling N scale is using more and more of the real stuff for my scenery. Even dirt and ground rock. Tom, you are one of the best at making something new look like nature had truly done its job at weathering. I'd swear that rolling stock you did your magic on had to have been steel not plastic! Look at Joel Bragdon's weathering powders -all came from nature.


rogergperkins

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Re: Trees
« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2013, 06:43:28 AM »
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Trees and foliage looks excellent!  :)

Ed Kapuscinski

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Re: Trees
« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2013, 10:10:58 AM »
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Ed, that shot of Max's hippo on your layout is my favorite model RR picture ever.

Thanks!
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There are a few more here too: https://picasaweb.google.com/103328750375507168249/MaxMagliaroSNScalePRRSteam

BCR751

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Re: Trees
« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2013, 01:09:00 PM »
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Karin,

Your trees look amazing.

Do you know the names of the plants you use for making the crushed foliage?  I live in northern BC and may have some of the same stuff.  I will be needing tons of deciduous trees for my layout and any way to make it easier and cheaper is a good thing.

Doug

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Re: Trees
« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2013, 01:52:20 PM »
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Do you know the names of the plants you use for making the crushed foliage?  I live in northern BC and may have some of the same stuff.  I will be needing tons of deciduous trees for my layout and any way to make it easier and cheaper is a good thing.
Doug
 
Hi Doug, we started collecting colorful leaves that fell from trees in the fall. However, I found out that most of them ended  up a brownish to reddish brown so I looked for the brightest green bushes and leaves then cut them right off of the source wherever I could (is this even legal?  :scared: ) Baking them also changes the color a bit. You are on the right track if you go this route plus, to my eyes, it looks best. The expense would be the box of raw Super Trees but the yield is pretty good. http://www.scenicexpress.com/supertrees.html Just go out and cut samples and do the baking thing, then you'll know which plants in your area will work for you.

Here is a nice N scale tree that I had in a box. Hubby is a died in the wool Z modeler and is a bit worried about what I will be transforming the storage room into, hehe.

BCR751

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Re: Trees
« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2013, 09:23:31 PM »
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So, this foliage you cut never loses its color?  Gee, the only thing we have here that stays green into the fall is Red Alder.  Some of the huckleberry leaves stay green but they are very small.  Wish I knew what yours is.

I have looked at the Super Trees stock but shyed (sp) away due to the price.  Also, many of the "trunks" are way too big for N-Scale so there could/would be a lot of waste.  I guess if you can get a fair number of trees out of a bag it would be worth it.