AutoCad suggestions for artistic interior drawings

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by Toronto Mike, Jun 28, 2008.

  1. Toronto Mike macrumors regular

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    Jan 5, 2008
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    Toronto
    #1
    I am an artist who has come across a possible new direction for my commercial art.

    While outside working on an artistic pen and ink line drawing of a house, someone walked by and looked at the progress and complimented my ability to render the building with freehand accuracy. He worked at an architectural firm, and occasionally they have clients who like hand drawn interior images. That these images would be done from the architectural drawings. I imagine that you can command a decent fee for such works.

    Since my preferred method is working from life, and my own sketches, I thought that Mac AutoCad software would be a great help in quickly visualizing the interior's perspective layout. I would then be free to do the rest. Knocking in such perspectives with the correct proportions would eliminate the tediousness of making the translations - as well as getting the jobs done faster. I assume I'd print out such images myself in the correct size, trace faint pencil outlines on the art paper, then work on the freehand drawing itself.

    The software must be able to take their drawings if they come as 2D elevations, or floor plans and make the translation into 3D perspective drawings. I am assuming that the Architectural firms would provide what I need, however I can imagine on occasion I would need to do that myself.

    Do you have any suggestions for software that you have used that is very simple to use for such tasks, and is relatively inexpensive? I cannot imagine needing a full professional program to do such things. Ease of use is so important to me. Any ideas would be most welcome.

    Mike
     
  2. LeviG macrumors 65816

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    Norfolk, UK
    #2
    You'd be surprised.

    Only really suitable apps I can think of on mac are blender (although not really suited) or sketch-up although they are primarily a start from scratch affair and I'm not sure how good their suitability for reading (and converting) autocad files is.
     
  3. chedda macrumors 6502

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    Underwater
    #3
    hmmm

    Mac autocad is not available for 2D work look at highdesign. Otherwise i feel sketchup is worth a look to set up your perspectives the free version should suffice.
     
  4. Toronto Mike thread starter macrumors regular

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    #4
    Thanks for the suggestion of Sketch Up. I had a quick look on their website. It could be the answer. The price of the Pro version seems reasonable at $500. I was afraid of the $1000 plus of the heavy industry standards. To me, anything under $500 deserves a closer look.

    The idea of rotating these 3D models and having the proportions remain intact is really what I am looking for. It needs more investigation if it can really do what I need - take a 2D drawing (architectural rendering) and turn it into a 3D model that can be manipulated - even scaled in Photoshop.

    This is a good start. Thanks for your help.

    Mike
     
  5. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #5
    Have you looked at VectorWorks? IIRC it can take DXF exports from AutoCad and create 3D renderings that would be the basis for your art.
     
  6. Toronto Mike thread starter macrumors regular

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    #6
    Thanks Canada Ram

    I think if I was going to get serious about this, I should approach an architectural firm, have them give me what they would in the coarse of doing a real job - then use that material within various free trial versions of these different software packages to see what is suitable.

    Your suggestion of Vector Works needs careful consideration since it is up there in price. I don't mind paying that much for something that does work if that is the best solution.

    Since Vector Works is in that price realm, would the Graphic 3D rendering programs be a substitute? You'd have the ability to do the architectural drawings with the added function of 3D graphic art type of rendering? Maybe it is a case of taking the AutoCad formats, converting them into something these graphic programs understand and go from there. Just an idea.

    Mike
     
  7. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    #7
    um, this is going to sound really basic but just to make sure everybody is on the same page about what you're looking for...... you're not expecting any of these programs to take 2D drawings and turn it into a 3D model by itself, are you? You do realize you'll be creating the 3D model yourself if you only have 2D drawings from a client?
     
  8. Toronto Mike thread starter macrumors regular

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    #8
    My knowledge of this type of software is rudimentary, to say the least. Yes, I was hoping that they would be able to turn 2D drawings into 3D drawings by themselves by the software if these drawings existed in types of files where such information could be further manipulated.

    If all I have is 2D drawings on paper, I would have to make the translation myself by manually creating the drawing so the software could create a 3D model. Is there an easy way to do this? Can software take a 2D image file provided by the architect and create a 3D model from it?

    Mike
     
  9. LeviG macrumors 65816

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    Nov 6, 2006
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    Norfolk, UK
    #9
    Not that I'm aware of and I'm in this kind of work, working from plans and making renderings etc.
    You can sometimes get a 3d model from autocad (and solidworks but thats slightly different) but it depends on how its produced to start with. If its drawn rather than modelled for the plans then its a case of you physically making it yourself in 3D.
     
  10. Toronto Mike thread starter macrumors regular

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    #10
    Thanks for the response LeviG.

    I will have to go down the list of these suggestions and try out what will work for me best.

    Mike
     
  11. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    #11
    I agree with what LeviG said. Basically, somebody has to spend time making a 3D model.

    If what you need is something to make basic models so you can produce different perspective layouts that you can trace and render by hand, then the free version of Sketchup may be all you need to get started. It has a tutorial to help you get started and will give you a feel for things before you start to spend money.
     
  12. Toronto Mike thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jan 5, 2008
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    #12
    Thanks guys - I've downloaded the free version and will try it out.

    Mike
     
  13. LERsince1991 macrumors 65816

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    Jul 24, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    Use sketchup without a doubt.

    The free version does everything the pro does but it can't read autocad (and some other formats) files. Also gives more export options.

    If you want to use sketchup for 2d the just view it from above and change the camera to parallel projection.

    You can print to scale and do pretty much everything.
    With the pro version you could take a 2d autocad file, (import it), fill the 2d wireframe into faces, push/pull these faces up to create walls etc... and very quickly you have a 3d model.

    However 500$ for the extra option of reading some more formats isnt worth it for me. I'm a student and get autocad for free, I got sketchup from a torrent with a serial number (sorry!). My workflow is so fast and efficient, I create a 3d model in sketchup, then export all the elevations, sections, plans and isometric drawings I want into autocad, clean them up - delete lines, add lines, format lines, hatch areas and annotate, then that it, design fully represented :) easy peasy!

    Good luck
    Luke
     

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