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Here's the question, I am using face instancing to create foliage for leaves, but the result is quite uniform in terms of rotation.

Is there a way to randomize rotation of the instanced objects?

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    $\begingroup$ Hi. When you say "the instancing tool", which tool do you mean? $\endgroup$ Nov 28, 2019 at 13:22
  • $\begingroup$ Instancing tool within the Context Menu, specifically it's a face instance, scaled by face size. $\endgroup$
    – Pooch
    Nov 28, 2019 at 13:24
  • $\begingroup$ In which context menu, which mode ... may be helpful if you posted a picture. Also if i may suggest, using a particle system set to hair could help. Still kinda curious about where that instancing tool is from though. $\endgroup$
    – Xylvier
    Nov 28, 2019 at 16:07

1 Answer 1

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The "Object Properties -> Instancing" facility is pretty limited in terms of varying how the children are displayed. If you want control over random variation, you probably want to create a particle system. There are two particle system types, Emitter and Hair. Generally speaking, emitter is used for animated particles (e.g., bubbles, smoke, etc.) while hair is used for static parts growing off of the structure (e.g., hair, leaves, stones, etc.).

It might be worth searching YouTube for "blender leaf particle system", which should give you lots of tutorials/examples.

Briefly, if you:

  1. Create a thin, cylindrical "Branch" with applied scale, subdivided vertically to give it plenty of small faces.
  2. Create a simple planar "Leaf" that's on a roughly one-unit (1m) scale
  3. Add a new Hair particle system to the branch.
  4. Set up the system:
    • Check "Advanced" to make "Rotation" panel available
    • Emission: Number=200
    • Rotation: Checked, Orentation Axis=Normal, Randomize=0.25
    • Render: Render As=Object, Scale Randomness=0.5, Instance Object="Leaf"

then that'll give you a start:

enter image description here

You can use vertex groups and weight painting to control the density on a mesh to make the distribution a little more realistic (or, in this case "low-poly-realistic"):

enter image description here

Here's a blend file:

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