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In this course, author George Maestri explains how to model and render 3D objects and scenes using Google SketchUp 8. The course covers the fundamentals of the application, from navigating the user interface, manipulating objects, and building basic shapes to importing objects from Google Earth, animating a scene, and modeling organic terrain using the Sandbox tools. The course also explores SketchUp Pro features, which are available as an upgrade. These include tools for creating dynamic components and adding interactivity, as well as sophisticated importing and exporting options for working with outside applications.
One nice feature about SketchUp is that it allows you to geo-locate your models. In other words, it allows you to take your models and add geographic information so Google knows exactly where those models are located. This is really great for building, so you can actually place your building exactly where they're supposed to be in a city. So right here, I have a very simple model; it's actually a simple representation of the ferry building in San Francisco. So let's go ahead and geo-locate this particular building. I'm going to go to File>Geo-location and when we first locate a building, we're only going to have one option here and that's to add the location.
When we do that, we get a Google Map. So what we can do is we can start searching that map for the exact location. So let's go ahead and type in where we think this is. So this is the ferry building in San Francisco. If you know the exact address, you can type that, really anything that Google Maps will understand in order to locate the building. So ferry building San Francisco, hit Search and here is the tower, right here. So we'll zoom out just a little bit here and you can see that this is the actual Ferry building, you can see the shadow of the tower, and so this is where I need to geo-locate my building.
So in order to do it, all you have to do is find it, center it and then just hit Select Region, and then If you want, you can pinpoint this so that this region is exactly centered on your object. And once we do that, all you have to do is hit Grab. Now that window goes away and what it does is it brings in the actual map and uses that as a ground plain or a terrain. So we can see that I've got the map here but my building is not quite oriented and obviously, the building is facing the wrong direction.
Well, that's pretty easy to fix. All I have to do is select the building and then just rotate it and move it into place. So I'm going to go ahead and just use my Rotate tool here and just go ahead and rotate it as close as I can get it. And then let's go ahead and move the item. I am just going to grab the corner here and try to pin that corner to the corner of the map. So let's see if I can do this here; looks like it's pretty good. Okay, well, there we go. So once you have everything placed, we'll also notice that we've got a couple of other options here with Geo-location.
One is to clear the location, which basically just undoes all the work that we did. The other one is to Show Terrain and if you Show Terrain, what happens is it actually changes the terrain of the object to match. So in this case it's pretty flat but if you had more significant terrain, it would show up. The other one is called Add More Imagery and what this does is it just allows us to redo that previous step which is to Add Location and Add More Imagery. So those are some of the basics of how to geo-locate your models.
Now one thing to remember is that when the maps come in from Google, they will be scaled appropriately. So if your building is too small or too big, you probably have to scale your building and not scale the maps.
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