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Architecture, design, and media professionals all over the world are using Google SketchUp to create detailed 3D models efficiently and quickly. In Google SketchUp 6 Essential Training, design expert George Maestri teaches the foundations of SketchUp's drawing, design, and rendering tools. He covers the fundamentals of the application, the interface, and the Sandbox extension, which is used to create realistic organic shapes and terrain. George also discusses how to model and texture objects from existing photographs and export models to Google Earth to visualize how buildings fit in a real landscape. Exercise files accompany the course.
The next tool to create a sandbox terrain is called From Scratch and what this does is it creates a rectangular grid that you can then sculpt into the terrain that you want. And you sculpt that using the Smoove tool and also this tool here, which is called Add Detail. So let me show you how this works. First we are going to select the From Scratch Icon and if you notice down here in the bottom corner, we have a grid spacing. Now this is important because it determines how detailed our terrain is going to be. I am just going to leave it at the Default right now, which is 10' and then just drag out a terrain here.
Now what I am doing here is I am left clicking and dragging. As I drag, it lays out a base line. Then I can left click again and then stretch out my terrain. Now because I have a 10'X10' grid, you can see it is kind of broad here. So when I select it you can see that it is grouped just like the Contour Method of creating a terrain. But if I double click on this, it will open the group and then I can individual edges and move them around. So this is one way to sculpt the terrain. This really isn't that detailed, it is not detailed enough to really give me a descent terrain.
Now one way to add this detail is by using the Add Detail tool. So what I am going to do here is I am going to select all of these edges and then just go Add Detail and what this does is add detail to those edges. So when this tool is enabled, I can just click and add detail where I wanted. For example, if I wanted a peak here, I could just add a peak, or right here. So you can that every time I click on an edge, it allows me to move that edge up or down. So let's do it over here, so for example this edge here, I will go ahead and snap to the midpoint, click and then I can move up and down. You can see how, when you add detail, it just cuts things in half.
Now the one thing you may have a problem with is that when you do this, you might not want the edge to go this way. So for example let's go ahead and do this one. When you click on this it automatically creates an edge that goes diagonally this way. Now you may want to go diagonally the other way. We can do this by going Flip Edge and I click on one of these diagonal edges here. I can swap it. So I can flip that edge from one point to the other. Now that can be very handy if you want your detail to go in a different direction. So those are some of the basics of how to create a terrain using Add Detail and Flip Edge and in the next lesson we are going to look at the Smoove tool.
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