Need help with modeling a cactus skeleton

How would you go about modeling a cactus skeleton?

cactus skeleton

I think SubD would be a good start. Get it from the Extension Warehouse.

Keep in mind the geometry will quickly bloat the file. It might be best to develop a short segment of the skeleton as a component that can be repeated to help keep the file size in control.

Thank you for the advice. I’ll download SubD and see what I can do.

Most of this saguaro skeleton was done with the native tools, only switching to the extension Joint Push Pull when the outer surface needed to be thickened. Whether or not you want to work with an extension like SubD or Artisan, it’s good to start with a blocked out form.

The image can be dragged into a SU workspace for reference.


Thank you so much for showing me the process. I am going to try and
recreate this, also ss it possible to take this pattern and have it work
with the follow me tool?

Hey so I was able to recreate the cactus skeleton, I ended up taking the groups and patching them together along a circle. Is there a more efficient way to do this? Also I was unable to find the jointpushpull extension. I did find Adebeo, but I had problems with it only changing the surface thickness in one direction.

It may be worth adding in the ‘Copy along Path’ Extension to your workflow.

Would save you the trouble of having to rotate components individually when working through your curves.

… albeit by trading off that work with the task of drawing paths instead, so…

Joint Push Pull is located at SketchUcation. You need to register, which can be done for free.

To bend, first create a linear stack of component sections as shown in the tutorial. Explode. Run JointPushPull if desired. Make the model a group or component. Try CLF Shape Bender as instructed to bend to a curve…

Hey so I downloaded the joint push pull ext. and it worked awesome. I
practiced with the CLF Shape Bender, and was able to do a square shape
easily since finding a straight edge was easy. The problem I’m having now,
it that my cactus skeleton shape doesn’t have a definable straight edge, so
when I start the Shape bender it doesn’t follow the curve.

Make the skeleton a group. Draw a line on the skeleton group.

To use the plugin, select the group. Select the Shape Bender plugin. Click on the line drawn on the group. Then click on the curve. Press Enter.

I was able to do it. Thank you so much for getting me through all the
steps. Now I can move to final challenge, taking this structure and
applying it to an airship design I’m working on.

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