Tutorial (i) - The First Scene

1. Getting Started

The files needed for this tutorial may be downloaded here:

Terrain File (ter)

Object Image Map (bmp)

You will also need to have downloaded the Boat Jetty, Log Cabin and Pine Tree objects from the Object Library (these are all included in the object compilation - downloadable from the same page)


This tutorial assumes that you are using a registered version of Forester - unregistered versions will not be able to add the grass to the scene or use 3D clouds.

Forester version used in this tutorial: v1.00.0009

2. Import Terrain

Click the Import Terrain button (or press Ctrl-T) and select the terrain file downloaded in step (1). Open the 3D preview window (click the toolbar button or press Ctrl-P). Click the 'Camera' radio button to lock the preview to the current Camera location.

3. Set Camera Position

In the Camera window, set the Camera Position to 65, 202, 6, the Target to 125, 169, 6 and the Camera Zoom to 1.5. Press <Enter> or click the Update Other Windows button to refresh the 3D preview with the new coordinates. Set the image size to 900 (width) x 600 (height).

4. Test Render

Bring up the Render window (Ctrl-R). Ensure that all buttons are ticked EXCEPT for Small Preview, 3D Glasses and Focal Blur. Click the 'Create Script and start POV-Ray' button to render the scene. POV-Ray should start automatically and render an image similar to the one on the right.


All images on this page were rendered with the Small Preview option ticked (which forces the image width to 300 pixels, whilst maintaining the height aspect ratio). Also, the Anti-Aliasing level for all images on this page was set to either the third or fourth positions.

5. Set Terrain Texture

Open the Landscape Parameters window (Ctrl-L)

Add a New Layer to the list (click the Add Layer button). Set the colour to a dark green shade. Set the Blurriness and Patch Size values to near the maximum. Reduce the grain size to just under 50%.

Add another Layer. Set this to a dirty mud colour (for the lake-bed). Set the Coverage to 100%, and the Roughness to zero. Tick the 'Use Height Parameters' option and set the Maximum Height to 5.1 and the Height Tolerance to 0.2

(See the User Guide section on the Landscape texture window for more information).

6. Add Water

Open up the World Settings window (Ctrl-W).

Set the Water Level to 5.


7. Alter Lighting

Set the Sun Heading and Altitude to 245 and 30 degrees respectively.

8. Add Haze

Add a fog layer to the scene (Click the Add button in the Fog/Haze pane of the World Settings window). Set the Fog/Haze Type to Ground Fog.

Set the fog colour to 170, 185, 225 (RGB), and Base, Density and Half-Height to 5, 25, 10 respectively.

9. Add Clouds

Add a cloud layer to the scene (Click the Add button in the Cloud Layers pane). Set the Cloud Type to D (unregistered users may prefer to use types A or B, which are designed to work without the 3D option).

Set the following parameters: Level 70, 3D ticked, Hollow ticked, Height 20, Base Colour 70 (RGB all the same), Middle Colour 120, Top Colour 220.

Set the sliders to the following values (or experiment to find an interesting formation):

Cloud size 60%, Transparency 0%, Coverage 50%, Turbulence 10%, Swirliness 0%.


When performing test renders with the 3D option ticked, reduce the 3D resolution to improve rendering speed - for the final render set it to as high a value as you can be bothered to wait for!

10. Place Objects (Jetty)

Open the Objects List window (Ctrl-J). Click the Add Object button and set the Object Label to "Jetty"

Set the Object Type to 'BUILDINGS - Boat Jetty' and the Distribution type to 'Point'.

Ensure the 'Lock Shape to Terrain' option is unticked and set the Coord#1 X,Y,Z values to 71, 200, 5. Set the Z rotation to 180 and all Scale values to 2.


11. Place Object (Log Cabin)

Add another object to the list.

The the Object Type to 'BUILDINGS - Log Cabon' and the Distribution type to 'Point'.

Ensure the 'Lock Shape to Terrain' option is unticked and set the Coord#1 X,Y,Z values to 70, 201.5, 5.5. Set the Z rotation to 200 and all Scale values to 1.5.


12. Create Image Map

Open Object Placement Image Map window (Ctrl-I). Click the Wipe button (answer Yes to the confirmation question).

Set the Marker Colour to Bright Green (0,255,0 RGB)., and the Line Thickness to Medium.

Click on the Image Map the locations where you want to place a clump of trees.

13. Place Objects (Trees)

Back in the Objects List window, add a new object to the scene. Name this one "Pine Trees"

Set the following parameters:

Object Type: TREES - PineTree04

Distribution Shape: Image Map

Number of Copies: 1

Marker Colour: Bright Green (0,255,0 RGB)

Lock Shapes to Terrain: Ticked

Rotation X,Y,Z: 5, 0, 0 (Y Fixed, X,Y Unfixed)

Scale X,Y,Z: 1.5, 1.5, 1.5 (All Unfixed)

X-Y-Z Variance: 5

Scale Variance: 30%

Water: Avoid Water

Slope Distribution: 0,0,40,60 (S-a, S-b, S-c, S-d respectively)


14.  Add Grass

Open the Grass Setting window. Click the Add>> button and select 'Long Windswept'.

Set the following parameters:

Colour: 60,100,0 (RGB)

Height: 0.2

Density: 200

Fall-off: 0.2

Cut-off size: 2 pixels

Tilt/Mean: 65, Variance 25

Rotation/Mean: 100 degrees

Distribution: Probability

Altitude H-a: 4.5, H-b: 5

15. Final Render

After adding a second tree type, some rocks to the foreground and a Hot Air Balloon above the lake.

Rendered at 900x600 then resized to 600x333.

Unsharpen mask applied and a slight increase in contrast.