Mathew Valero, designer - artist, USA
Trees modeled with OnyxTREE BROADLEAF, rendered in SketchUp with VRay. Onyx's OBJ export works flawlessly with 'ply2vrmesh' utility which allows SketchUp users to convert polygonal landscape models from Onyx into proxy meshes. Mr. Valero has created a wonderful tutorial of the workflow using OnyxTREE BROADLEAF to make proxies for SketcUp.
Here he his sharing it with you:

Tutorial: Making a hi-poly tree proxy for SketchUp using ply2vrmesh using OnyxTree

  • Copy the shortcut for ply2vrmesh to my desktop to make things easier on converting.
  • Adjust the shortcut to include some of the parameters that I like to use, like reducing the polygon count. Adjust as you see fit. Under Taret for the shortcut properties, I use this line:

    %comspec% /k ply2vrmesh.exe -previewFaces 800 -smoothNormals -materialIDs

  • Open Onytree Broadleaf and create a hi-poly model of a tree. I use geometric leaves and not 2D planes as to not have to use clip-map leaves which increase render times.
  • Go to the export panel and use OBJ as the file type. I save the OBJ file to my desktop.
  • Drag the OBJ file right on to the ply2vrmesh shortcut you created.
  • The DOS shell window will open and you should see the conversion process take place and a vrmesh file will be saved to your desktop. Copy the vrmesh file to a shared location on your network or workstation. For now, we cannot relocate a proxy file from SketchUp, so the easiest way to deal with this is to just have a shared library in one place for now. Otherwise, you can copy the vrmesh file and place it into the same folder as your SKP file and when you open your SKP file, V-Ray will load the proxy from there.
  • Import the mesh into SketchUp. You will need to open the component and rotate it, switching the green with the blue axis. This is the one limitation of using an OBJ file. If you use the FlipXY argument in the ply2vrmesh utility, you will lose your UVW mapping, so just do the Y flip inside SketchUp.
  • Create your materials to be placed on to the ID channels and assign them. For me. I just use one bark material and one leaf material. From OnyxTree, IDs 1 through 5 are trunk, bough, branches objects, and ID 6 is leaves.
  • I like to render out a low res PNG of the tree and import into the component as a visual reference in SU.
  • Right click the proxy and Save As to save your proxy component into your proxy library. If you dont have one, now is the time to start one!
  • 160 million polys rendered in SketchUp in 3 minutes! This is where the geometric leaves really cut on render times.


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