Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Palm Tree Proof of Concept

Earlier today I found this site, which shows a simple, inexpensive way to make if not great palm trees, at least a lot of them for mass effect at almost no investment.

For the first tree I followed the directions to the letter and just used a sheet of printer paper:

The rare Frost Palm. And a cat whisker.
I rather like the way it came out - but obviously a white palm tree is of use in a limited number of gaming scenarios - a frozen planet perhaps?Most certainly not in the Pacific.

I found a palm tree flat online on the Oversoul site, but it's not quite to my tastes. I then tried to assemble one from green construction paper and a tan-ish piece of card stock. The latter looked too much like what it is.

So I got out the paint:

The left-most tree is the white tree painted and the middle tree is the card stock and construction paper with paint.

I like the first tree the best,  and since I want a boat-load of palm trees for my Pacific Theater games, I think this is the way I'm going to go.

Some issues :
  • The fronds aren't quite the shape i want - cutting a different shape is easy enough
  • The trunks get wider at the top - I attribute this to doing this rather hastily
  • Painting the fronds after the tree is rolled is difficult at best - best to paint them even before you cut to prevent unwanted curling (you want some of course, just not as much as you'll get if you apply the paint after they've been cut). They stick together if you do them afterwards.
  • Masking tape wrapped around the trunk may give a more bark-like appearance
These are fun to make as well as exceptionally inexpensive. I think the mass of trees I'll be able to assemble will more than make up for any lack of "realism".

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