Most of you know SketchUp and how SketchUp works. The software is simple. And the most important thing that we need to keep it simple doesn`t matter in which stage of the project. Plugins are great and make work much faster, but most of the times not so good for size and simplicity of the model. If you don`t need to use plugins, please don`t.
Editing existing simple forms with plugins makes simple forms bigger size. Editing complicated forms with same plugins makes same forms huge. Working with one huge file is acceptable, but working with a couple of huge and complicated forms is not acceptable at all.
Making different elements has different steps in the process. Let’s take canopy for example. Canopy is a combination of columns and roof structure. Some of the columns have more than 20 elements. The roof, for example, is a combination of hexagonal on the completely random wavy form. More random structure makes changing elements in that structure more complicated. Changing element from a different stage in modeling requires different time to make changes. A lot of elements is easier and better to make again. Plugins make this change fast, but model gets bigger and bigger just in one step. Keep that in mind.
Models downloaded from SketchUp warehouse need to be cleaned and checked before using in the overall model. Sometimes this model is just not for using. To much polygons, to heavy model, to much-exploded elements.
Sometimes even simplest command like changing color can be painful. Some of the models are using a combined texture instead of one solid color. To change color on that element means that you need to change material on every single piece of that element. We are talking about hundreds of pieces.
Working with detailed, big and heavy models can be really slow. One of the ways how to resolve that problem is to take group by group and copy it to new empty file. Working in one file, you are leaving hidden marks behind. Even if you deleted one of the detailed and heavy models, invisible information staying like mark which makes model big. In that way, empty SketchUp file can have the same size as an original model file.
Making model detailed, simple and clean is perfect like that to use in Lumion. Lumion recognizes materials like ID numbers and positive/negative side. In that case, if you are going to use the model in Lumion, you don’t need to apply materials in SketchUp at all. Organize materials by ID material number, doesn`t matter which SketchUp color.
Working in Lumion on big and complex projects is all about separating model in SketchUp by zones, structure, interior, landscape, furniture… Reloading big files in Lumion can take up to one hour. Organizing separated files by layers in Lumion makes your workflow much faster together with reloading this files.