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A Companion Guide To Avomance's Tutorial

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DreamBliss avatar DreamBliss
Level 29 : Expert Architect
UPDATED 8-29-2019

This is a companion guide to Avomance's, "How To Build A GIANT Custom Tree Freestyle" video tutorial:

Specifically, it seeks to address some confusion by viewers about what he did around the 6:20 mark. This is roughly where Avomance comes in with a fully fleshed out tree trunk. If I had a laptop that could handle it, I would gladly do a video tutorial filling in the gaps, as I understand them. But as I do not have good enough equipment and had to quit doing video tutorials as a result. The best I can do is this small, written tutorial with pictures. Here's to hoping it helps!

To start off you will need a world where you are playing in Creative Mode, in order to access the cheat commands. Otherwise you will need to figure out how to manually do each step.

Building The Trunk

We start out with a pillar of yellow_wool. As I decided I wanted to use numbers in the Fibonacci Sequence, my pillar is 47 blocks high. That's 5, 8, 13 and 21. Once you have your initial pillar built press T to access the chat/command menu, then type /up 5, /up 8, /up 13 and /up 21. This will give you three areas where the trunk will narrow.:

Next we build out from each glass block, something like 5 blocks, resulting in this:
Pillar with Extended Segments

Now, as Avomance instructs, we will encase the pillar in logs, I will be using oak_log, and I will also replace the yellow_wool with oak_log. If you happen to have WorldEdit installed and working, you can use the commands //re air oak_log and //re yellow_wool oak_log to make things go quicker:
Encase 1

Encase 2

Encase 3

This pic is from a previous build of this tutorial. It shows clearly the encasing process:
Encase Wool

Next we build a wall on each side around our newly encased pillar that is 13 blocks high, as shown here:
13 Blocks High 1

13 Blocks High 2

13 Blocks High 3

13 Blocks High 4

13 Blocks High 5

Now we build up a wall 8 blocks high around each side. I have taken some liberties here and added a corner block:
8 Blocks 1

8 Blocks 2

8 Blocks 3

8 Blocks 4

8 Blocks 5

Finally we build up a wall 5 blocks high around each side. Again I have added some corner blocks:
5 Blocks 1

5 Blocks 2

Here is a pic of the finished result. This is pretty much what you would have at the 6:20 mark, following the logical conclusion of the instructions given:
Logical Result 1

Logical Result 2

Now you may notice that I have taken a few more liberties with the top to make it look better. First I replaced the yellow_wool inside with oak_log. Then added a "stick" to the top. I think I made it 8 blocks high, but it could have been 5 or 3. Then I lowered and raised bits of the encasing around the top, at the corners, to make it more random. If you need me to clarify any of this, please comment below. Now let's go over a few things you can do to "shape the trunk", as Avomance refers to it!

You can vary the height of each section, as I have already done with the top:
Vary Height

Vary Height 2

You can add or remove blocks, to a section of the trunk, combining that with varying height. As I discuss below, I think Avomance adds blocks to each side. Below is a pic showing a removed section:
Remove Section

You can "shift" a section of the trunk to one side, adding blocks to one side and removing them from the other:

Side 2

Here are two pics, one at a distance, and one up close, from a previous build of this tutorial, showing how this looks:
Roughen Trunk

Roughen Trunk Close Up

You can "shift" a section of the trunk to one corner, adding blocks to one corner and removing them from the other:

Corner 2

From what I can tell Avomance just added blocks around each side (as he demonstrates briefly), using the wool blocks he has marking each segment as some sort of guide. He added these extra blocks at varying heights, and what you see at 6:20 is the finished result.

What I would do at this point is continue to build the trunk out. I would change the height of each section and I would try to make it more round. But I wouldn't alter it too much. Yes, because we build with blocks in Minecraft it seems we have to exaggerate things. But most fir and pine trees grow straight and tall, only curving out at the base where the roots are. So I would keep the trunk fairly regular, as I have done here, and then, when I add limbs, I would add any other details I need. The limbs will create further exaggeration on the trunk as we "connect" them with it. That should be more than enough randomness for a more natural appearance.

Building The Roots

I would not, like Avomance shows, add roots all along each side and angle. I would, instead, maybe have 1-2 roots at an angle, and 1-3 straight roots. I would also, as he does with the branches, add some curve to both types of root. Here is a rough sketch:
Roots Direction

I have decided to start with a corner, diagonal root. The curve Avomance talks about with the roots can essentially be thought of as a parabolic curve. Using this idea and the the first few numbers of the Fibionacci Sequence (1, 1, 2, 3, etc.), I "sketch it out" using logs, moving from vertical logs to horizontal logs, as shown here:
Angle Roots

There is really no plan here. I am just going by "feel", what I think looks right. Once I have a sort of sketch for the root, I flesh it out, as shown below:
Diagonal Root 2

Diagonal Root 3

As I build this out, I will add and remove things. I am constantly changing it until I am happy with it. Later I will build up the segments of the trunk along this corner and partly along the each side.

Next, I sketch out the two normal sections of roots. Normal in that these are straight out from the trunk, rather than at an angle. I vary the height but continue to use the Fibonacci Sequence numbers (1, 1, 2, 3 etc.) to make my curve. Here is what that looks like:
Normal Roots

Now I just flesh it out, using my initial sketch as a guideline. Again nothing is set in stone here. The design is constantly changing:
Normal Roots 2

Normal Roots 3

Once I have built out the roots, before I start raising and lowering segments, I have this:
Roots Finished

After I have built out the roots, I make adjustments on the trunk to correlate to each root. So if the root is lower, I lower the segments. If the root is higher, I raise the segments:
Raise and Lower

Raise and Lower 2

Raise and Lower 3

Last but not least I try to blend the segments together so it looks right. It's almost like I build a spiral of raised and lowered segments around the trunk:

Blending 2

Blending 3

Blending 4

Here is my completed trunk:
Completed Trunk

Building The Limbs

It is unlikely I will complete this section.

Parabolic Curves and the Fibonacci Sequence

Here is an EXCELLENT tutorial on building curves:

So let's talk some more about curves... If memory serves the Fibonacci Sequence, that natural spiral in snail shells and other places, shows up in how a tree puts out limbs and their placement. Roots are pretty much the same as branches. So instead of the 1, 2, 3, 4... sequence I did here, try: 1,1,2,3,5,8 etc. for your curve. See how that works with the "taper" in your trunk. Try to apply it to the branches and roots also.

Here are two examples using the Fibonacci Sequence. The first is for a tree like a pine or redwood. The second is for a tree like perhaps an oak or elm. I used the same combinations to build the frame, just moved them up and down to make them more natural. The sequence is: 1, 1, 2, 3 or so to build the trunk, and 8, 5, 3, 2, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 to build out the branches in the second example. The numbers correspond to the number of blocks used in the pattern.
FS Pine Tree

FS Elm Tree

Closing Thoughts

Basically I would "feel it out." I would maybe sketch out a proposed path for the trunk, a limb, a root. I would then get some distance away and look at it. Does it "feel" right? Is it too long? Too short? Does it seem like this tree needs more roots? Less? How is that curve? Is it too regular? Then I would build it out along my proposed path, and again get some distance to look at it. I may even find myself building a little, going away, coming back, adjusting as needed until I am happy with the final result. There is no real tutorial for this. You have to develop your artist's eye. You have to take a walk in the woods and look at trees. Or if you have no woods, find cool images like this:
Fig Tree

Or like this:
EnTree by Graemeb

To get an even better idea of how to build large trees in a blocky world, you should check out Creativerse. Here's a pic:
Creativerse Forest

I hope that helps. Please let me know if there is anything I need to do to make this clearer.

Feedback as to anything you appreciated would help A LOT. I really feel a lot of the time like I am farting in the wind over here, and nobody cares about what I do. So if this helps you in any way, please let me know! If you are still struggling, please comment with your questions and/or suggestions, and I will edit this tutorial accordingly. Thank you!
CreditAvomance, Graemeb

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10/10/2022 9:12 amhistory
Level 29 : Expert Architect
DreamBliss avatar
I noticed Avomance gave me a diamond recently for this. I don't think the quality of this work deserves a diamond, but the effort definitely does. I have grown a lot as a builder since writing this, and actually have gone through a few stages with what I think of as organic design. Here is a stream I did not too long ago, that, combined with Avomance's work and Gemini Tay's, ought to help anyone who wants to make trees in Minecraft.
Planet Minecraft


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