I’ve been dabbling with Google Sketchup recently. Sketchup is according to the blurb “3D sketching software for the conceptual phases of design” or as rather more grandly proclaimed by McCall & Associates “SketchUp is the finest (and most innovative) tool available for anyone designing anything from coffee pots to skyscrapers.”

I’ve wanted to produce a series of ‘anatomy of…’ posts detailing the components and terminology related to the various parts of a building for some time now. I really wanted the series to be driven by diagrams rather than words – this is one of those subjects where a picture really is worth a thousand words. It didn’t take much searching to happen upon Sketchup as perhaps the best option for me to use.

So far I’ve created a couple of models and uploaded them to my new Sketchup library. Please take a look.

With the aid of Google SketchUp 8 For Dummies I spent a couple of head-scratching evenings trying to get Sketchup to do something close to what I wanted it to do. To me, the key to Sketchup as so many things in life is keeping things simple (KISS). Its all about edges and faces. Draw an edge (basically a line but in three dimensions), form a shape using other edges and Sketchup will fill the space between the edges with a face… repeat until you’ve built a model of the Taj Mahal, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, or in my case a labelled picture of a section of roof! There are all sorts of other whistles-and-bells, but those are the basics.

Quite enjoyable and a powerful tool for building any models you may have a hankering after. Give it a try… I quite fancy building a complete model of the barn – another one for the to-do list.






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