Senior Studio II - Post #08
Since my last post I have been troubleshooting optimization for the third tree model. This model has been the heaviest and most difficult to work with, but I am making progress. I needed to split up the geometry into the leaves and the trunk/branches so that I could group the geometry and can easily apply shaders to the different pieces, as well as manipulate the UVs, and delete portions of the leaves for optimization. I was able to run Mesh -> Separate successfully, however I was then unable to open the file afterwards because of how heavy it was, so I needed a different approach.
Because of the density of this tree, while working on it I experienced a lot of file crashes and slow moving progress which is why optimization will be so important for the tree assets. My classmate Alexis Behilo made the suggestion to try extracting faces, and I was able to double click and it selected the faces for the main part of the trunk so I could extract it, but a lot of the smaller branches remained with the leaves. I was able to split up the mesh by selecting the remaining branch UVs and then going back to the main viewport and extracting those faces, working in small groups to not crash the file. Now that I have it split into the branches and the leaves, I am working on reducing the density of the leaves.
I also made the decision to not use the Black Gum tree asset, as it had an even higher poly count, so I will be populating the scene with 3 species of trees.