Exercise 7.3

Architectural Perspective Collages


When designing an architectural perspective, the showcase piece of a studio presentation, you need to be able to add depth and perspective and hopefully achieve a sense of place within your drawing. You will need to be able to add people, landscape elements, and objects quickly and easily to your perspective. You should also be able to bring in textures and colors to represent materials in the model. In this exercise, you will assemble the pieces we have learned in previous classes and create your own architectural perspective collage.

Part I: Working in SketchUp

  • Using one of your own models (not your historical building model), a new model of your own design, or the sample model posted to the course website, create an eye level perspective view of the model. (Use the “Position Camera” tool.
  • Experiment with various styles (Window>Styles…) to find one that has sharp, crisp lines and one that has the desired “look” for your final product (this will be demonstrated in class).
  • Export each look (Export>2D Graphic…) to a new .png or .jpg file. If you have SketchUp Pro, you can export the “clean lines version” to an AutoCAD format, which will save steps later.

Part II: Working with your images

  • Place each .png file (from above) into a new 8.5” x 11” artboard in Adobe Illustrator. Each image should be on a different layer.
  • Scale as appropriate using the free transform tool. Make sure you scale both images together. The final “look” image should be on top of the “straight-line” image.
  • Use the Object>Live Trace>Make for each image to create vector lines from the SketchUp images. Make sure to use the Tracing Options Dialog Box and check “ignore white.” (Illustrator Tutorial 3.12)
  • Now expand the Live Trace by clicking the Expand button on the options bar.

Part III: Live Paint on your Live Trace

  • On the “straight-line” image (now a live trace) use the Live Paint tool to create fill regions for collage textures. (Illustrator Tutorial 3.6) Make sure to expand the live paint when you have finished. If you do not have an enclosed paint region, add additional lines on the same layer to fully enclose regions before making the live paint group (you can merge an additional object into the live paint group after by selecting the objects and then choosing Object>Live Paint>Merge).
  • Now, follow Illustrator Tutorial 3.15 to create a clipping mask from the live paint object. This will allow you to create textures for various pieces of your buildings.

Part IV: Envelope Distorts

  • Select the clipped object(s) (texture) and choose “Embed” from the options bar.
  • Now select Object>Envelope Distort>Make with Mesh (Just follow Illustrator Tutorial 3.16)
  • Create 1 column and 1 row in the dialog box that pops up.
  • Use the direct select tool (white arrow) to adjust the corners into the proper perspective.

Part IV: Collage

  • Now, collage in people and other objects to create a beautiful architectural perspective. (You may also wish to turn on your “look” layer).
  • At the end of class today, use File>Export to create a .png or .jpg to post to the course website.

Download Sample SketchUp Model

Download .pdf of Exercise 7.3

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