Ever since Google Earth included the 3D Building layer, more and more buildings are popping up all over the earth. Google Earth that is.
This is a great platform for business owners to promote their locations. Google Earth is so effective because it taps into a deep image that we all understand — the planet.
But many modelers find obstacles when they first begin to create models for Google Earth.
This post is for such starters. I’m basically laying down some ideas on what things must be considered and things to avoid when creating a 3D model.
This was the most difficult thing for me to personally accept when I started Geo modeling, but the simple fact is that there’s a big difference between what makes for an appropriate architectural model versus what makes an acceptable model for Google Earth (GE). Primarily, GE buildings need to have as few faces (few polygons) as possible and they need to be photo textured.
So we need a way to “discover” these faces and have a trick to make sure there are no faces un-textured.
Discovering un-textured faces:
When you are done with modeling and texturing your model, move into the building and check if there are any unneeded (and usually un-textured) faces inside that you didn’t notice from the outside. This happens quite often actually.
You could also just make a group of your model and then paint the group “from outside of its context” with some bright, striking color (Like bright green). This will reveal any obtrusively apparent, non-textured faces that may still need texturing.
If so, edit the group and texture these faces with an appropriate texture or color.
Beware! If your model is intended for Google Earth bare in mind that no one will look at your model from a distance of centimeters. Usually people will hoover around your building at a distance of 10 to 50 meters. That’s where your model must look sufficiently detailed.
Recently, my brother sent me from Venezuela 24 pictures of the building he lives in. Each picture was at least 2.5 MB each. Imagine what it would be if each and every picture made it to the final model? Let alone being appropriate for Google Earth.
Lastly, take the time to investigate about the building you are modeling.
During the upload process, you will be ask to enter some information about the building you just made and intend to share with the world. It would be great if you could write as much as you know about the building. Things like, local business in the area, address, year built, etc. The more you write, the more interesting it will look, but make sure the information you provide is accurate and will not change in years to come.
Let the modeling begin and have fun!
Be sure to check out the video! You can also check out some of my models by visiting my 3D Warehouse here.