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Importing a model from Google SketchUp

From: Photoshop CS5 Extended One-on-One: 3D Fundamentals

Video: Importing a model from Google SketchUp

In this exercise I'm going to show you how to take 3D model created inside of Google SketchUp and import it into Photoshop CS5 Extended. But first I want you to have a sense of what we're trying to accomplish inside of this chapter. In the previous chapters we were building these frankly beautiful 3D compositions. In this chapter we're just going to take this image right here, which comes to us from Bart K of the Fotolia image library. It's your standard everyday average frankly low-quality photograph. But what I like about it, it has this obvious sense of two-point perspective, and we're going to import a chair into that photographic scene, and of course we'll position the chair and light the chair and so forth, but that's about the extent of it.

Importing a model from Google SketchUp

In this exercise I'm going to show you how to take 3D model created inside of Google SketchUp and import it into Photoshop CS5 Extended. But first I want you to have a sense of what we're trying to accomplish inside of this chapter. In the previous chapters we were building these frankly beautiful 3D compositions. In this chapter we're just going to take this image right here, which comes to us from Bart K of the Fotolia image library. It's your standard everyday average frankly low-quality photograph. But what I like about it, it has this obvious sense of two-point perspective, and we're going to import a chair into that photographic scene, and of course we'll position the chair and light the chair and so forth, but that's about the extent of it.

We'll ultimately end up switching out this chair for this gargantuan chair right here, as if it's an art installation or something like that, just so we can get a sense of some of the things that can go wrong and how to fix those problems. However, I'm keeping the project simple because we've got a lot of tools that we have to grapple with here and I want you to have a firm sense of how these tools work. Now I've mentioned to you that Photoshop doesn't provide any modeling tools, none whatsoever. You have Repousse, which allows you to take 2D layers such as text layers and vector-based shape layers and convert them into 3D objects, but that's the extent of it.

And while it might I suppose be possible to fabricate this chair using Repousse, you would be at it for an awfully long time. There is much more efficient ways to work and those ways are to work with an independent modeling application. Now I might go-to app is SketchUp, not because Photoshop and SketchUp work all that well together, they actually kind of don't, but rather namely because SketchUp is free. You can download it from sketchup.google.com. For both the Mac and the PC the standard edition of the software is free, so you don't need any 3D modeling experience to get started.

There is free videos at the Google site. There's frankly even better SketchUp videos from George Maestri here at the lynda.com Online Training Library. And finally SketchUp includes a community site where folks can trade their models and there is just thousands upon thousands of these things to cull from. So you can get started very quickly. Problem is things can go wrong as you bring these models into Photoshop. Let me show you what I'm talking about. I'll go ahead and switch to this file here. It's called Low back.skp and I created this model. And by the way I am not a SketchUp aficionado, but I was able to create this model here inside SketchUp.

And then what you do is you export the file. You can't just save it because Photoshop doesn't support SketchUp's native SKP format. You have to go up to the File menu, choose the Export command, and then choose 3D Model. Then make sure to set the export type to the Collada file format, which is a DAE extension, because that'll serve you best. And then finally in this you only have to do once, but you have to do it, click on the Options button and turn off this checkbox Preserve Component Hierarchies. Now problem with turning this checkbox off is without those component hierarchies the meshes can kind of drift away from each other, as we'll see.

However, if you turn a checkbox on, why Photoshop really does a bad job of interpreting the file. So turn that checkbox off. This is a known issue by the way; Adobe is aware of it and Adobe in fact recommends the checkbox be turned off. Then click OK. You only have to do that once. Then go ahead and export the file. Now I want you to notice something about this chair. It is up-right. Now that may seem like an obvious thing to point out to you but in just a second you will wonder if it really was. But it is absolutely up-right. The bottom of the chair is resting on the ground plane and the legs are drifting below. I could fix that if I wanted to, but it is not really all that necessary.

However, despite the fact that it's up-right, ready to go, it's absolutely aligned to the X, Y and Z axes, when I bring it into Photoshop it's a different matter. So I'm going to switch back to that original image, which is called Checkerboard floor.jpg, and to import that file I'll go to the 3D menu and choose New Layer from 3D File, and then I'll go ahead and locate that SketchUp model subfolder and click on Low back.dae and click on Open in order to open that file, and curiously it arrives on its back.

So Photoshop has not oriented the chair properly at all. Well that's kind of a drag but it's not that big of a problem, because we can lift that chair and set it up-right in no time whatsoever, and I'll show you how to do exactly that in the next exercise.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS5 Extended One-on-One: 3D Fundamentals
Photoshop CS5 Extended One-on-One: 3D Fundamentals

69 video lessons · 21192 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
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  1. 36m 36s
    1. Welcome to One-on-One
      1m 58s
    2. Making Photoshop your default image editor on a PC
      4m 2s
    3. Making Photoshop your default image editor on a Mac
      5m 52s
    4. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      4m 10s
    5. Remapping Mac OS shortcuts
      4m 0s
    6. Establishing the best color settings
      3m 53s
    7. Constructing the ideal workspace
      3m 25s
    8. Adjusting the interface settings
      3m 6s
    9. Establishing the best preference settings
      6m 10s
  2. 47m 3s
    1. Making Saturn
      1m 36s
    2. Creating a basic 3D shape
      4m 5s
    3. Mapping texture onto a 3D shape
      3m 4s
    4. Editing a diffuse texture
      4m 56s
    5. Converting 2D art to 3D
      5m 26s
    6. Defining an opacity map
      3m 35s
    7. Merging two 3D layers into one
      4m 59s
    8. Lighting a scene
      5m 0s
    9. Troubleshooting and ray tracing
      2m 57s
    10. Fixing ambient light and strange rings
      4m 44s
    11. Traditional 2D edits in a 3D world
      3m 39s
    12. Using the Camera Rotate tool
      3m 2s
  3. 33m 44s
    1. Extruding type
      1m 8s
    2. The special considerations of 3D type
      6m 47s
    3. Using the Repoussé dialog box
      5m 32s
    4. Assign textures to surfaces
      4m 2s
    5. Using the Ground Plane Shadow Catcher
      4m 39s
    6. Adjusting and loading lights
      3m 7s
    7. Adding a custom-contoured bevel
      3m 30s
    8. The Repoussé presets
      4m 59s
  4. 1h 1m
    1. Turning any 2D layer into 3D
      1m 17s
    2. Creating the base shape layers
      4m 55s
    3. Cutting holes from shapes
      6m 14s
    4. From circles to "near spheres" in Repoussé
      4m 44s
    5. Adding an active constraint
      7m 34s
    6. Converting constraints into holes
      5m 23s
    7. Merge, texture, gloss, and shine
      5m 17s
    8. Fixing texture and bevel
      6m 10s
    9. Editing an internal constraint
      4m 55s
    10. Rotating and positioning by the numbers
      7m 27s
    11. Sharpening and introducing a background
      3m 32s
    12. Enhancing the colors of a 3D scene
      4m 10s
  5. 49m 18s
    1. Navigating in 3D space
      1m 12s
    2. Importing a model from Google SketchUp
      4m 22s
    3. 3D explained: XYZ position and orientation
      6m 26s
    4. Adjusting orientation by the numbers
      3m 5s
    5. Feeling your way through rotate and roll
      5m 33s
    6. 3D movement: Drag, slide, pan, and walk
      6m 5s
    7. Assigning materials and lights
      4m 28s
    8. Editing and replacing a model
      4m 55s
    9. Repositioning independent meshes
      8m 44s
    10. Finishing the giant marble chair
      4m 28s
  6. 1h 11m
    1. The stuff of the real world
      1m 12s
    2. Making a spherical panorama
      7m 26s
    3. Setting orientation and position
      4m 8s
    4. Moving a sphere into a panorama
      5m 7s
    5. Adding and positioning a point light
      6m 38s
    6. Modifying the attributes of a material
      6m 12s
    7. Designing a custom bump map
      5m 25s
    8. Adding precisely symmetrical spheres
      5m 52s
    9. Designing and saving a custom material
      4m 51s
    10. Replacing an environment map
      4m 15s
    11. Resolving seams in a 3D panorama
      6m 1s
    12. Masking aberrant shadows and adding contrast
      7m 30s
    13. Adding a person to a 3D scene
      6m 41s
  7. 16m 56s
    1. Working low-res, rendering high-res
      1m 35s
    2. Upsampling 3D objects
      6m 10s
    3. Real-world upsampling
      5m 22s
    4. Touching up 3D shadows
      3m 49s
  8. 1m 14s
    1. Until next time
      1m 14s

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