In computers, 3D modeling is the process of creating a 3D representation of any surface or objects by using curves, edges, polygons and vertices in a 3D space. There are specialized 3D production software that lets an artist create and deform surfaces in a digital 3D space. So basically, you can create a 3D model of your new house and easily add and subtract the features you like or dislike in it. If you didn’t like the placement of the chandelier, change it with ease using these 3D software.
3D Modeling is used in a wide range of fields, including engineering, entertainment design, film, visual effects, game development, and commercial advertising. There are numerous 3D modeling software, some are commercial, and some are free. Sketchup, Cinema 4D, Blender, AutoCAD and Hexagon are some of 3D modeling software.
Google Sketchup is a software which is used to design professional 3D and 2D models very easily. It is available in two versions on the internet, Sketchup Make which is a Freeware and Sketchup Pro which is a commercial software. It was first developed by Trimble Navigation, a mapping, surveying and navigation equipment company. Google bought this software from it in 2006.
The major advantage of Sketchup is that the things to be learned in it are few and most users can learn how to operate the Google Sketchup program within first few hours of working. There is an online open source repository called 3D Warehouse from where you can download windows, doors, vehicles for your model and you can also contribute your own model. And it also integerates with Google Earth so you can easily upload the model of a building on Google Earth.
This simply means YOU can learn it right now and start making your own 3D models.
How to use Sketchup?
Sketchup is a great product which is free and easy to use. If you want to know how to use it, here is a step-by-step guide to you about using this software and its tools.
1. First of all, you have to download Sketchup make (freemium) software and install it on your PC.
2. Open the program. You will see that there is a set of three axes (red, green and blue) provided immediately, so you get the 3D feel at the very beginning. Have a look at the tools available. There is a Line tool, a Circle tool and a Polygon tool. Each of these presents you with various possible options to create your desired shapes.
3. Get to know a few basics to help you navigate around the program.
• To rotate around, push the center scroll bar on the mouse (this is orbit tool) and move around.
• To move the whole viewing screen, push the same scroll key on mouse, hold down the Shift key on your keyboard (this is pan tool) and pan around.
• To delete, choose the select tool (arrow button) on the toolbar, select the object you want to delete and press the delete key on your keyboard.
• If you wish to select multiple things, keep the ctrl pressed on keyboard and then select objects on screen.
• If you wish to deselect a particular object, click on it using select tool with the Shift key pressed in.
• To save some work, click on "file", then click on "Save As". Choose where to save the file. Type the name of your file and click on Save. The file will be saved as a .SKP file.
4. Draw some lines. Select the line tool. Obviously, this is for drawing lines. Give it a try to see what you can create but be aware they're one-dimensional.
5. Draw some shapes. Beyond lines, you can draw two-dimensional shapes using the tools for shapes. Draw some rectangles, circles and polygons just to try them out.
6. Creating three-dimensional objects. The way to do this is by "pushing" or "pulling" a 2D shape into a 3D shape. Use the Push/Pull tool over the 2D shapes you've created.
• Select the Push/Pull tool.
• Press the mouse button on the shape you want to push or pull into three-dimensional form.
• Left mouse Click, then push or pull the shape as desired. Click again.
(Note: you need not keep pressing the mouse button while pulling or pushing, click it once, push or pull, and click again)
7. Using panning and orbiting. There is a great need to see 3D objects from different perspective. With the help of pan tool, you can move the drawing left or right and up or down. It also allows you to do a combination of these actions. The orbit tool allows you to orbit around the object you have created.
8. To move and rotate objects. Sometimes you have to change the position of the 3D object you have created. You can do this by using the move and rotate tool. Give it a try and see if you can move the objects around to a different position.
9. Color or paint the object. When you have completed your model and you want to color it, you just have to select the paint tool and your favorite color and then paint it all.
10. To zoom into a model. Zoom tool lets you zoom in and out on the shapes you have created. You can easily zoom in or out using simple scrolling.
11. To use construction guides. It helps you to position construction guides anywhere within a drawing. Once made, they can be used to align the object. These are the dotted lines and they make it easier to line up objects you made. You can create guidelines using tape tool in the toolbar.
These were the primary things you must know in Sketchup.
Mini Project - 3D model of Taj Mahal
We have created a 3D model of the world famous “Taj Mahal” as per the mini project using the 3D modeling software, Google Sketchup.
Taj Mahal is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The Taj Mahal is the epitome of Mughal art and one of the most famous buildings in the world. It is a white marble mausoleum located in Agra, Uttar Pradesh, India. It was built by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his third wife, Mumtaz Mahal. Almost 3 million people visits Taj Mahal every year to witness the beauty of love and marvelous architecture of this famous monument.
How to make Taj Mahal on Sketchup?
Here is step by step description of the process used to build Taj Mahal along with screenshots and a video.
Let's Get started.
• Create a base for the Taj Mahal and surrounding four pillars. Use rectangle and circle tool.
• Then pull the base up to give it a 3D look.
• At next, create the shape of the center building of Taj Mahal up on the base and then pull it up. Remember, in 3D modeling guidelines are your best friends. You will always need them to make your model look perfect. As you can see we used a lot of guidelines to build the main building.
• Ok. Now a question for you. What will you get if you pull a circle up in Sketchup?
Yes! That right – “a cylinder”.
To make small pillars of the roof, create small cylinders of small radius, place them on small cuboids and place a cone up on them.
Don’t worry! We will teach how to make cones.
• This step is crucial. The main building of Taj Mahal has 5 domes on the roof- one large and four comparatively smaller.
For your convenience we have made a video on “Tutorial - How to make Semi Sphere and Cone in Google Sketchup?"
Please watch it and you will have a clear picture how they are made.
Create one dome and you can just copy and paste it again and again.
• After making domes place them on 5 cylinders as shown in the picture.
• At next, create the 4 surrounding pillars of Taj Mahal.
• Copy and place the dome on the cylinders.
• make shapes on the ground and using Paint Bucket tool, paint them as ground, grass and water.
• You don’t need to make trees, what you can do is just download a tree model from the Warehouse.
Go to File->3D Warehouse->Get Models
Search trees in it and download any one.
• add images to the model. Go to File->import-> browse and select the image file and click import.
• Place the picture on the surface. You will see that the picture is either showing multiple times or it is not scaled perfectly. To make the picture fit perfectly on the surface, you need to learn how to make textures and how you can stretch the texture over a surface.
Watch the following video -
• Now there’s just one thing missing in this model and that is…..