Thanks for many inputs, suggestions and replies. I will try to answer a number of questions and ideas in the order they were posed from the beginning.
@GussNemo. I think the approach in my last original picture (of the ‘look at my hair’ grass) could lead to reasonable or even good looking grass. Depends on the length of ‘hair’, colours, etc. However, that approach was to make a very large ‘hair’ on a full terrain and Look at my hair tends to crash very often when I attempt this. So, it is not the way forward, I am afraid.
@Rashad Carter. The polygon count of the hair object (in third example) was 404064. The terrain was ‘ultrafine’. But it was not a very big terrain, so I am afraid that with a slightly bigger terrain or with a denser ‘hair’ the grass will easily be more than a million polys. I think that instancing is indeed a better idea (as can be seen in my previous mail).
@Horo. Thanks. Though the exact way of doing it is not optimal, I think using hair as grass can still work (with instancing). Still have to try that.
@JStryder. Indeed: instancing is a good idea. I saw a posted tutorial by Rashad that thought me a lot. Before I read (and mostly understood) it, the lab crashed on me very frequently. When making the grass in the previous mail, it worked more or less flawlessly! Your second mail shows that Garibaldi hair is like tubes (which hair is too). Strangely enough, Look at my hair hair is like leaves and therefore (by accident) more suitable for grass. Your (first) picture doesn’t really look much like grass indeed.
The second attempt is slightly more grassy, but the hairs are in my view too thick.
In the render that chohole referred too, it does look reasonable in the distance.
Am I to understand that Garibaldi cannot paint grass on an imported object? Look at my hair makes grass on any imported object.
The Carrara moss looks nice.
And your final terrain with Garibaldi hair/grass works well when seen from somewhat further apart. Although I can still see the tubelike forms. Not much can be done about that, I fear.
@David Brinnen. Indeed, I noted slow AA, even withouth transparency. Of course, good grass and good leaves do have some transparency. That is why I made my last attempt with no transparency, but somewhat lighter colours (which I, by the way) made somewhat more vibrant in Picturenaut after exporting the Bryce render to HDRI.
@JStryder: impressive render speed! My attempt was much slower, though part of that may, of course, be related to differences in our machines. Mine is not a very modern one with Core 2 Duo T6600 2.20 GHz and 4 GB RAM. I assume that even an ‘older’ 5i can be faster.
@Rashad. I do have to try your method! Looks complicated, but probably I will be able to follow it after a few trials. I would like to see an example of what you made with it! Luckily, my last attempt did work quite nicely without memory problems (yet).
Finally. to ad to my thoughts on using clothing instead of hair for grass.
1. I find that Marvelous Designer (which I bought in version 2, still rather cheap) works easier than Look at my hair, although I will attempt is again.
2. You can make several forms of blade that you want.
3. You can control where each blad comes. That is relatively tedious, so I just made lots of lines and fixed blades within regions more or less random.
4. You can add wind, though in my example it didn’t seem to have a lot of effect.
5. You can choose the stiffness and flexibility etc. of the material. I used settings for leather, but stiffer and more flexible can also be used.
6. You can make one basic ‘clothing pattern’ (pieces of not yet stitched cloth). When you ‘run’ the tool, the cloth is stitched, but also dynamically falls around the avatar. When you stop the run after longer or shorter time, you can export the result as object. By rearranging to starting position and doing the run again (longer and shorter periods and more or less wind, or even with changed material settings) you can very quickly create several more or less similar, but slightly different clumps. (Something similar can be done by modifying hairs too, I have to admit).
The process I used was:
a. Make a terrain in Bryce, export as object, import as avatar in Marvelous Designer
b. Create a ground cloth pattern and place it right over the terrain/Avatar (so when running, it falls and stays on the terrain/avatar)
c. Create many lines in the ground cloth to fix the leaves to.
d. create many leaves (one or more forms and sizes)
e. prepare the future stitches by ‘seaming’ the underside of the leaves to a line (you can put more than one on the same line). See picture 1 for the result (from the pattern window).
f. In the 3D window, place the leaves close to the and above the ground cloth and ensure that they have a more or less free fall zone (to prevent strange clumps within the clump of grass). See picture 2 for the result (in the 3D window).
g. Now run, until you like the result (example picture 3). And stop the run!
h. Export the object to obj.
i. Rearrange all patterns.
j. Rerun until you like the results
Repeat h, i and j several times for more clump objects that are not exactly the same. When you want to, also modify the patterns or the material in between reruns.
I think I will give it more tries later. But I will also reattempt Look at my grass with small clumps and instancing!
I would love to see more hair-grass and clothing-grass attempts!