3D Modeling a Landscape Design in SketchUp & Lumion
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3D Modeling a Landscape Design in SketchUp & Lumion

Friday, 14 June 2019
Video Length:  54:10
Presented By:  Josh Webb

3D modeling is the future of design, and a great way to provide a striking preview of your intended design. It may seem intimidating to dive into a 3D program, but Josh Webb from Stack Rock Group is here to ease your mind. He'll show you how easy it can be to create an awesome visual for your clients in a surprisingly short time.

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
  • The Process
  • Preparation of the Design
  • Modeling Hardscape and Structures in SketchUp
  • Modeling in Lumion

0:00 – 2:39: Intro

2:40 – 3:43: The Process

Step 1: CAD/Land F/X (3:08)

Design team creates a concept in CAD with Land F/X


Step 2: SketchUp (3:22)

3D team imports the CAD file and closes the linework to create faces to use for modeling


Step 3: Lumion (3:32)

Add entourage, plants & effects, and produce a final set of images.

3:44 – 5:09: Preparation of the Design

Importing the design into SketchUp, cleaning up layers and linework (4:15)


Using the Make Face extension to close lines and create faces (4:25)

5:10 – 9:27: Modeling Hardscape and Structures in SketchUp

Creating a roof using the Make Roof extension (Valley Architects) (5:25)


Creating textures in SketchUp for Lumion (5:50)


Creating a fence or railing using the Make Fence extension (Valley Architects) (6:15)


Creating contours using the Soap Skin & Bubble extension (7:20)


Bringing in tree nodes and running the Cleanup extension to clean up the model (8:50)

9:28 – end: Modeling in Lumion

Selecting a scene (9:38)


Importing the SketchUp model (9:50)


Selecting and placing materials (e.g., grass, pavers, concrete, wood) (10:25)


Orienting textures to change their appearance (13:20)


Adding relief (13:45)


How to work with nodes in SketchUp and Lumion (15:20)


Importing your own models of objects to use in Lumion (such as boulders) (19:25)


Indication of how well Lumion is currently running (21:28)


The importance of placing the model as close as possible to the origin in Lumion (22:30)


Applying the trees and entourage (23:45)


Scaling and rotating objects (24:40)


Question: Do you have suggestions for bringing in a large planting plan? (25:04)

Answer: If it’s something excessively large, they’ll have the CAD file open and place it manually.


Note that SketchUp and Lumion are not linked by default, although you can use an extension to link them. (However, this extension can slow the model performance.) (26:20)


Adding 2D people to the model in Lumion (28:55)


Taking still renders (30:05)


Adding photo effects, including shadows and skies (30:30)


Correcting colors (32:50)


Adding a watermark (33:10)


Stylized photo effects (33:25)


Exporting a set of photos (34:50)


How to show a mix of two or more grasses or groundcovers by “painting” the or pasting material in (37:27)


Question: Is it possible to geolocate a model in Lumion? (40:24)

Answer: Yes. You would turn off the sky photo effects and add a sun study to select a location, time zone, date, and hour, and you’ll get the exact sun location for that information.


Question: How would you add a backdrop to hide the horizon line? (41:30)

Answer: You could bring in a Google Earth image to serve as a backdrop, add clusters of trees to block the horizon line, or model more of the surroundings. You can also add fog from the Precipitation options.


Adding night lighting (43:55)


Considerations for file sizes (48:00)


Overview of the Valley Architects plugin and the tools available within it (49:30)


The Cleanup extension (51:20)


The Instant Road and Instant Door and Window extensions (52:10)


Flooding a plan using a water material (53:00)


If you ever need your online backup sent to you on a physical drive, be prepared to pay for it. It’s a good idea to organize your backups by year, which will tell you what actually needs to be restored immediately and, as a result, save you money. (43:30)

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