DS|Sketch3D is an add-on to SketchUp, the world’s most popular and readily available 3D modeling tool. For DynaSCAPE users there will be an export to SketchUp format right from DS|Design for an easy transition from the 2D world into the 3D world.
For both DynaSCAPE users and AutoCAD designers, there are tools to make this transition quick and painless. Anyone using SketchUp can create beautiful 3D models by making use of a huge library of landscape-specific 3D components crafted by DynaSCAPE specifically for SketchUp. These components include plants, ponds, pools, rose arbors and more!
“99% of my 3D jobs have sold”
Patrick DuChene on DynaSCAPE Sketch3D. With more than 20 years of experience in the landscape industry, Patrick has worked for some of the Northeast’s most prestigious landscape companies and one of the top 100 landscape companies in the United States. Along with his extensive design experience, Patrick has managed million-dollar residential construction divisions.
How it Works
Google SketchUp is powerful and yet very easy to use. In the past, the problem with using it for landscape design has been both a lack of good landscape-specific content called components and the fact that all CAD drawings need clean up when they are first brought in to SketchUp. DS|Sketch3D provides a solution to both of these problems:
Export to SketchUp – DynaSCAPE users will benefit from a new feature in v5.5 that will prepare and then convert your DS|Design drawings directly to SketchUp format (.skp), allowing you to open them in the free version of SketchUp.
CAD Cleanup Plugin in SketchUp – to allow 3D modeling in SketchUp to begin as quickly as possible, a new DynaSCAPE CAD Cleanup tool will automatically fix CAD drawings in one step. This new plugin scans the converted DynaSCAPE drawing (or imported AutoCAD file – .dwg) and repairs all of the common problems with imported CAD geometry allowing you to start 3D modeling right away. More time-saving plugins for Mac and Windows will be added in the future.
Landscape Component Libraries – use the extensive libraries of DynaSCAPE Sketch3D components to create beautiful 3D models of your design. Choose from over 1,000 models of plants, ponds, pools, rose arbors, cabanas and more. With SketchUp’s ‘reload’ feature, replace DynaSCAPE library figures (and AutoCAD blocks) with 3D components in a few mouse clicks, quickly building your design in 3D.
How to turn a 2D design into a 3D model with DS|Sketch3D
Creating a 3D model from a 2D design is easy with DS|Sketch3D. We’re going to be providing you with the training you need to get this done efficiently but here are the basic steps you will be following:
DynaSCAPE Users – From DS|Design choose ‘Export to SketchUp format’
DynaSCAPE Users – Open your design in Google SketchUp (Free or Pro versions). AutoCAD Users – Import your .DWG file (requires SketchUp Pro)
Run the DynaSCAPE CAD Cleanup tool to prepare it for modeling.
Begin modeling the house and hardscape elements.
Add material textures.
Replace 2D symbols with 3D models.
Finish model and create scenes from various angles.
Prepare a presentation for your client by:
- Exporting them as images and printing them out or emailing them to a client or
- Creating a walk through video (.avi) or
- Rendering the model with one of the many rendering programs to create photorealistic images of your finished design.
From DynaSCAPE to SketchUp
Basic Steps for Modeling
Presentation Options Overview
Over 1,000 Models of Landscape Items
Browse through a huge selection of over 1,000 components to build that perfect landscape model. Up until now there has never been a library of models this extensive. You will find 100's of trees, shrubs, palms, perennials etc. along with a large collection of rocks, ponds, pools and landscape structures. Below is just a fraction of what's available.
The proof is in the presentation!
DS|Sketch3D User Guides & Resources for Trimble SketchUp
From guides to plugins to tutorial videos and many other training resources. This list will continue to grow as we find resources that will significantly enhance your presentations and increase your productivity.
This guide will help you prepare your 2D DS|Design drawing for export to Trimble SketchUp format (.skp), making the process as trouble free and streamlined as possible.
This guide will take you through the steps of creating a 3D model of a landscape in Trimble SketchUp using DS|Sketch3D tools, components and materials. This guide is mainly relevant for DS|Design and AutoCAD users although anyone who creates their base design right in Trimble SketchUp may benefit from this guide as well.
Download Trimble SketchUp – you can also purchase a Pro version of SketchUp ($495).
Download Trimble SketchUp Bonus Packs – For SketchUp 8 Google moved our Bonus Packs of components (pre-drawn SketchUp models of useful objects like furniture, cars etc.) online to the Google 3D Warehouse. To find them, please take a look at this Trimble SketchUp Help Center article.
SketchUp Bonus Packs – SketchUp has once again provided a download for all of its bonus pack components and textures for SketchUp 2014.
Trimble SketchUp Plugins – Links to many different plugins for SketchUp on the Trimble website.
Ruby Scripts for SketchUp – This Google page provides a description of Ruby scripts and instructions on how to install them.
Great Texture Websites for SketchUp – this links to Landscape Architect John Pacyga’s blog where he has compiled a huge list of texture websites.
Other Sites for Plugins for SketchUp
Ruby Depot – a place to find free plugins from Ruby developers of the SketchUp community since 2004. This site offers 800+ free downloadable scripts.
Smustard.com – a great source for free and paid-for plugins to perform a variety of tasks.
1001bit_freeware_v1.0.5.rbz – free from 1001Bit Tools For creating hip roofs as well as rafters, joists, spiral stairs etc.
Roof.rb – free from the Ruby Depot – For creating 5 different styles of roofs, allowing you to quickly model your house (for SketchUp 2013 or older).
Randor.rb – purchase for $3 from Smustard.com – Great for randomly rotating and scaling trees so they don’t all look identical.
Pathcopy.rb – free from Smustard.com – Allows you to copy groups or components along a path.
Drop.rb – this is a free plugin that will help you place components on a surface. This plugin is especially helpful to drop many components (i.e. plants) onto a surface that is not completely flat. It allows you to do this simply with the right-click of the mouse then choosing ‘drop at intersection’. Please note: this tool will not appear in the Plugins folder, but will appear when you right-click on a component or a group of components.
SketchUp Tutorial Links
Great Books for Learning SketchUp
Google SketchUp for Site Design: A Guide to Modeling Site Plans, Terrain and Architecture by Daniel Tal
This book illustrates a holistic approach to SketchUp: how it works and more importantly, what to do with it. Filled with tutorials from front to back, the book focuses on the start and completion of projects that include rich detail and expression. Each part and chapter of the book builds on the previous chapters and tutorial. You will learn how to approach modeling site plans, buildings and site elements: from modeling each of these exterior environment elements to piecing them together to generate a singular and expressive model. The book culminates with tutorials demonstrating effective and simple ways to include grades and terrain using the Sandbox tools and how best to integrate the entire approach with AutoCAD and SketchUp. Also included are links to supplemental on-line resources such as YouTube tutorials and free tutorial and example models from 3D Warehouse. The book is useful for all SketchUp proficiency levels including beginners, hobbyists, and professionals.
Google SketchUp 8 For Dummies By Aidan Chopra
Whether you need to learn 3D modeling for business or you’re just eager to see what you can create, Google SketchUp and Google SketchUp 8 For Dummies are for you. Available in both a free hobbyist version and a full-featured professional version, SketchUp explodes the myth that 3D modeling software must be complicated to learn and use. This book will take you step by step through downloading and using both versions on both Mac and Windows. There are even video walkthroughs on the companion Web site.
- This guide explains both the free and professional versions for both Windows and Mac
- Covers the basic concepts of 3D modeling and how to build a 3D model, print or share your work online, export your drawing to another design package or Google Earth, and create a detailed set of plans
- Companion Web site features video walkthroughs
- Google SketchUp 8 For Dummies gets you up and running with 3D modeling quickly and easily.
Where to buy: For Dummies Store
3DVinci – Google SketchUp Books for Design Professionals
Comprehensive, hands-on SketchUp training, made easy with our detailed, clear, easy-to-follow format.
Their step-by-step, illustrated exercises will teach you every aspect of SketchUp, from the basic drawing and editing tools to components and groups, working with materials and digital images, presentation, animation, Google Earth, and more. These books will make it easy for you to start designing like a pro!
Where to Buy: 3DVinci Website