I’ve made a quick scene to show some sensible differences between a 3d model made in SketchUp and the rendered pic we get from Thea Render. We can save lot of time using proxies and placeholders.

Furthermore, converting some file formats into SketchUp could be really challenging so… don’t do it. Easy, right? The reason is simple: the Thea Render standalone program could open a .3ds or a .obj file just in a few seconds, so…

  1. Open a .3ds or .obj file with Thea Render
  2. Save the file as a .mod.thea file
  3. Go to SketchUp and insert the file as a proxy through the Thea Browser

I’ll try to write a detailed step-by-step tutorial about this process, but let’s focus:

That’s what I get from Thea Render…

Anatomy of a render scene (Thea)

…but that’s what I see in SketchUp

Anatomy of a render scene (SketchUp)

Let’s have a look to the SketchUp pic: the floor is painted with a placeholder texture; the wall is just a rectangle (extruded and subdivided) and a seamless texture; the trestles are made using SUbD but there’s no need to model them this way (using Round Corner could be IS a faster way to do the same thing but I wanted to practise with bevels and quads, so… ).

To render the scene with Thea all lights come from an HDRi picture, the textures are improved with normal and displacement maps and I’ve put a couple of models into the scene through proxies. If you want to get them (the dog and the chair), check out these links:

> Black dog from CadNav (free for use both personal and commercial projects)
> Form Armchair from Dimensiva (free for use in both personal and commercial projects)

P.S.: Dimensiva is a really cool site with high quality 3d models for free. Be sure to visit them!

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