#4 Inkscape – Creating trees in Inkscape 2 –

Creating trees in Inkscape 2

Option 3: create trees with the automatic tree creator within Inkscape.

In Inkscape you’ll find awesome methods to create all kinds of random stuff.
One of these is creating random trees.

Just take a look in Extensions > Render > Random Tree…
When you select this option, the following screen appears:

Trees - Random tree window
Play with the initial size and minimum size settings and check the option ‘Live preview’ in order to see which tree Inkscape creates for you.
If you don’t like the tree Inkscape created, just uncheck and check ‘Live preview’ again and Inkscape will draw another random tree.


Trees - image 1

Select the tree (F1) and add a stroke of 35px (or whatever value you like) to it: menu fill and stroke, tab ‘stroke style’ and change the value to 35px.

Trees - image 2

Then give the tree a color, for instance 008033ff.
One thing to notice: the tree consist only of a stroke, so when you want to change the color of the tree, select shift (to change the stroke color) and then select the color you prefer.
If you change the color manually (in the fill and stroke menu), remember to select the tab ‘Stroke paint’ to change the color instead of the tab ‘Fill’.
Trees - image 3
Inkscape might be responding slow now. If this is the case, convert the image to a path by selecting the image (F1) and the select Path > Stroke to path.

Now we will start using a new tool, the pen tool (select the icon or hit Shift-F6)

Trees - Icon pen tool

To use this tool, simply click on the canvas and let go. Then place your mouse on a new position and click again. Do this until you have something like the shape below.
Note: start at the point left (within the red rectangle), then click the other points. When you return to the first point, put your mouse above it and it will turn red. Then click and you will have a nice closed shape.
Trees - image 4


Now select the shape you just created, hold Shift and then select the tree.
Head up to Path > Division and you will see the result as below:
Trees - image 5


Now click the trunk and change the color to any (trunk) color you like:
Trees - image 6
While selection the division tool, the bottom of the tree (the leaves) doesn’t look like it should.
To fix this, select the leaves part and select Ctrl-d (this makes a copie of the selected item and places it on top of the item, which of course means you can’t actually see it).

Having this copie selected, flip it vertically (V or icon below).

Trees - Icon flip vertically

At this moment, the tree even looks worse but we’ll take care of that!

Trees - image 7
Select the lower half of the leaves (the copie you just made) and start stretching it.
You can stretch an object by first selecting it. When you have selected it, arrows appear on every corner:

Trees - image 8
When you grab one of these arrows, you can change the dimensions of an object. Hold Ctrl while changing the dimensions in order to maintain the aspect ratio.
Try moving around the object to create a better looking tree. You can also use the arrows between the corners to change the dimension of an object.
Don’t worry if you still see some white ‘gaps’ like in the image below: we’ll fix that.

Trees - image 9
To fill the white gaps, simply draw around them with the pen tool as we did before when separating the trunk from the tree:

Trees - image 10
Now click the object (rectangle) you just created and change the color to the color of the rest of the leaves. You can do this with the ‘fill and stroke menu’, tab ‘Fill’ and enter the color code in the RGB box.
However, you can also do this by using the ‘pick colors from image’ icon (F7).

Trees - Icon pick colors from image
Make sure the rectangle you created is selected. Then click F7 and click somewhere on the leaves. Your rectangle will then be filled with the same color.
Also remove the stroke: to remove the stroke, make sure the rectangle is still selected and while holding Shift, click on the red cross in the bottom left corner (as we did before).

Trees - image 11


So far for creating trees.
It’s a good idea to save this file because we will be using it in the future to create an even more realistic tree!


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