This paper presents a simple method to render complex trees on high frame rates while maintaining parallax effects. Based on the recognition that a planar impostor is accurate if the represented polygon is in its plane, we find an impostor for each of those groups of tree leaves that lie approximately in the same plane. The groups are built automatically by a clustering algorithm. Unlike billboards, these impostors are not rotated when the camera moves, thus the expected parallax effects are provided. On the other hand, clustering allows the replacement of a large number of leaves by a single semi-transparent quadrilateral, which improves rendering time considerably. Our impostors well represent the tree from any direction and provide accurate depth values, thus the method is also good for shadow computation.
Tree rendering, billboards, clustering, dual space, plane regression.