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Start drawing, designing, and rendering your ideas with SketchUp, the inexpensive 3D modeling toolkit used for everything from architecture to game design. George Maestri covers the fundamentals of the application, the interface, and how to model objects from scratch. Plus, learn how to texture objects and create simple animations.
All of the lessons work with both SketchUp Make, the free version of the program, and SketchUp Pro.
Let's get going by doing a quick overview of the SketchUp interface. Let's understand where everything is at before we start using the software. Now, SketchUp is a highly graphic program. And, as you can see, has a very large view port here. Which allows us to see things in 3D. And we'll talk a little bit about navigation later. Now, along the top, we have a standard menu bar. Which gives us our File, Edit, View. Which allows us to change the way we view our scenes.
Camera, which again, changes our view ports. And then Tools that allow us to draw. Other Tools that allow us to change things that have been drawn. And then, additional windows that can bring up things like materials and that sort of thing, to actually see what's in the scene. We also have a very nice Help system here. Now, when you first start SketchUp, you'll probably see a toolbar just like this. And this is really just graphic icons that represent a lot of the tools that you can find in the menus.
Now along the bottom, we have a number of little buttons here. This first one is for geolocation, so if your model is actually located to a specific place on Earth, you can find that geolocation. This one here shows you who made the model. So if you import a model from somewhere else, you'll know who made it. This just allows you to sign into Google, which is handy if you're using their 3D warehouse. And then this one actually is very important. This is your Help button, and it brings up a window called the Instructor. And this is kind of a nice, graphic representation of how to use each individual tool in the toolbar.
So right now, I have the Select tool activated. But if I were to select say the Pencil tool, or the Line tool, or the Push/Pull tool, each one of those will have a graphic representation of how it works. And this can be very easy to use. Now finally, in the bottom corner is a little input box. Now, if we're actually drawing something, we can actually type specific dimensions into this box to give it very precise measurements. So, those are some of the basics of the SketchUp interface.
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