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SketchUp and Lumion Rendering Techniques with Mike Brightman

Jun 30, 2017
Video Length:  1:00:43
Presented By:  Mike Brightman

Looking to jump to the next level in presentation graphics? In this guest webinar, Mike Brightman will demonstrate how to create amazing 3D renders with Lumion. Lumion is a program that lets you take your 3D model and make it come to life with real-time model animation and lighting effects. He will cover the connection between Land F/X, SketchUp, and Lumion and explain how dynamic these programs are for creating lifelike models.

Visit Brightman Designs website for more information.

Webinar Contents:

Note: The following catalog of content covered in this webinar is time stamped to allow you to follow along or skip to sections of the video that are relevant to your questions. You can also search for content on this page using the FIND command in your browser (CTRL + F in Windows, Command + F in Mac OS.)

  • Intro/TOC
  • About Lumion
  • Intro to Lumion
  • Swapping Out Components Using Nodes
  • Setting Up Camera Views in Photo Mode (Photo Studio)
    • Adding Photo Effects
  • Rendering

0:00 – 6:12: Intro/TOC

About Lumion (4:00)

6:13 – 19:40: Intro to Lumion

Starting a new Lumion scene (6:13)


Adjusting cloud cover and daylight in Lumion (6:30)


Adjusting grass size and height (7:10)


Importing a model into Lumion (7:45)


Placing the model at a known point (example: 0,5,0) (8:25)


Changing SketchUp materials into Lumion materials


  • Grass (9:10)
  • Glass (9:35)
  • Water (10:00)
  • Asphalt (12:20)
  • Rock & foliage (12:38)


Using trees from the Lumion Nature Library (15:30)


Replacing SketchUp trees with Lumion trees and reloading the model (17:33)


Adding environmental elements, such as ocean (17:50)

19:05 – 33:49: Swapping Out Components Using Nodes

Lumion doesn’t have a component-swapping capability as of the time of this webinar. For now, Mike is presenting the Nodes technique as an alternative/workaround.


Using Node Placement in to swap out SketchUp elements for Lumion elements, such as trees (19:05)


Reloading components with a “proxy” (21:17)


Switching over to a “render-ready” model in Lumion (23:56)


Reloading the model in Lumion (25:00)


Importing and placing a tree using nodes (25:43)

Note: Having dynamic elements, such as the moving ocean in this example, can interfere with the model’s overall performance. In this case, the ocean was causing some jumpiness. Turning off the moving ocean helped smooth things out.


Bringing in a plant (fern), giving it the proper position, and assigning it a component (28:40)


Bringing in a waterfall material (30:50)


Building a material library (material set) (31:40)

It’s a good idea to build a material library if you find yourself using the same materials over and over.


Using the Merge Models feature (to split up parts of the design) (31:50)

Merge Models allows you to have one person work on one aspect of the design (the planting, for example) while another works on another. You can then merge those two models into one.

33:50 – 37:56: Setting Up Camera Views in Photo Mode (Photo Studio)

Setting up and taking snapshots (33:50)

Mike recommends including a tree or other object in the foreground when taking snapshots.


Lumion allows you to pre-process, rather than post-process, images of your model.


Adding Photo Effects (35:13)

Examples include:

  • Light
  • Shadows
  • Reflection planes and speed ray reflections
  • “Autumn generator”
  • Global illumination
  • Underwater effects
  • Clouds (position, speed, master cloud amount, direction, etc.)
  • Volumetric sunlight
  • Snowing
  • Depth of field (including the ability to blur the foreground or background)
  • Lens flare
  • 2-point perspective


Post-processing effects (36:50):

  • Bloom
  • Overlaying your company logo
  • Selection saturation
  • Sharpness
  • Analog Color Lab (like an Instagram effect)
  • Noise (for extra texture)
  • Hyperlight (extra overlay of photorealism)

37:57 – end: Rendering

Creating a folder and exporting the model (37:57)


Opening a rendered image (39:00)


Saving effects into an image as an “effects stack” (39:20)

If you have one person in your office who is great at tweaking graphic effects, you can dub that person your office “master of graphic standards” and put him/her in charge of effects on all your models and effects stacks.


Creating an animation of the model by taking screenshots using the Movie Studio (42:00)


Copying and pasting an effects stack (42:30)


Cutting up the movie timeline and exporting snapshots of various views of the site (43:50)


In-depth demonstration of materials sets (47:49)


In-depth demonstration of nodes and how they work (54:09)


Recommendations for SketchUp Layout courses (56:09)

Note: Brightman Designs offers a 12-hour course on SketchUp for Professionals. The first 9 hours are free and include a SketchUp Layout lesson. Contact Brightman Designs with any questions.


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