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This tutorial will take you through the steps necessary to create 3D text in Bryce using terrains. This is the first in a series of easy to do terrains modification tutorials, to get an assortment of effects in Bryce…Requirements for this tutorial; A paint program such as Paint Shop Pro, Photo Shop, Corel Paint, Windows Paint, or any paint application that allows you to do white text on a black background and blur it. And BRYCE….
I have Paint Shop Pro 7, so that's what you see here for illustration purposes. However, Photoshop works in a very similar way. Create a new canvas in black the approximate size of your letter or text. Mine is 500×300. In the file menu, go to 'new', enter a window size, click 'OK'. Make your outline and filler colors both white.
Go to the text tool (circled) click on your black ground. The text dialog box should appear for you to select
the font you wish to use, and type in the letter or phrase, that you want to make 3D. Make it the largest you can fit within the rectangle, I used 72 points. Close the dialog by clicking 'OK'. The letter or text should now appear on the black ground.
Merge all the layers, this is important. Open your 'Effects' browser, and select 'Soften'. The hard outline of the text should soften somewhat, if it doesn't check to make sure the layers are merged. Okay, save it as a JPG or BMP, under a name that identifies it, in a place you'll remember, to save searching for it later. At this point we close Paint Shop Pro or Photoshop, and open Bryce up.
You won't need a lot of space so make the document 800×600, or something you are comfortable with. Create a terrain. I use terrains for text because they are not mirrored like lattices, and you get nice crisp letters. After creating your terrain go to the terrain editor, that's the 'E' on the little menu to the side of the terrain.
Load your image into the first box by selecting 'Load', at this point you can choose to copy and paste into the second box or load the image again. Hit the 'APPLY', for it to show up in the editor. (Note: the 'load' on the second box comes in handy when doing special effects, but that's another tutorial altogether…)My image needed the resolution increased so I went and selected '2048' or 'gigantic', then hit the 'APPLY'. (NOTE, it is very important when changing resolutions or images to hit apply for the change you want to take place.)
Next steps, you want to; first make sure your terrain is solid, then raise the clipping bracket up to eliminate the black ground, »NOTE: be sure to grab the end of the 'clipping bracket', the bracket is outside to the right of the gradient bar, grab the very bottom and move it up, DO NOT drag in the gradient bar, or it won't eliminate the background. You should have white text on a red background.««« Next, go to the 'Elevation' tab, click it, and hit the 'smooth' bead a couple of times and you're ready to go out and texture your letters (or text)…
Once you are in the work area, scale your letters or text to the size you want (this can be changed later of course), rotate them upright, and forward facing, so that you can see if anything needs adjusting….
Do a quick render 'without' texture to see if you need to tweak the terrain any…when you are satisfied apply whatever texture you like and render! If your terrain isn't to your liking, go back to the paint program and increase the size or, soften the text more. Or in the terrain editor, raise the height (make whiter) the terrain, and smooth again. It's as simple as that…Any font, anytime you need 3D letters or text…