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Combining a thriving career and a passion for creativity with SketchUp.

Featured by SketchUp UK in the summer of 2018, Gintare Sidaraviciute is an award-winning Interior Architectural Designer and 3D Visualiser. Since establishing GS Interiors, Gintare’s portfolio has grown and the company now serves an expanding global client-base. In the second of our series of Cadsoft Solutions Limited customer case studies, we caught up with Gintare to see how her career and passions have combined since graduating, and any advice she could offer for those keen on breaking into this field of work.

Hello, Gintare. We first read about you via the SketchUp UK blog back in the summer of 2018. An impressive debut! First Class Honours degree, awards and the establishment of a new business….. What’s happened since?

Thank you so much! Back then it really was just the beginning of my business and getting the opportunity to be featured on the Sketchup UK Blog was an absolute highlight. Since then I have grown the business a lot. I introduced a bigger variety of different extensions in my everyday workflow which helped me to create projects faster and more efficiently to improve my renders even further. I have gained more clients and built some wonderful working relationships. I have expanded my business into creating bigger projects such as architectural, commercial and 360 renders. And had an opportunity to work on some truly amazing projects.

I am always interested in getting new challenges, new projects and growing my business even further. Going forward I have a lot of new ideas and can’t wait to see what the next year will bring me!

You’ve been a SketchUp user for a number of years now and clearly SketchUp is an indispensable part of your work. Have projects grown in complexity and size?

I just learn as I go. Every project brings new challenges and experiences and I have to learn from my mistakes and learn new ways of doing things. The projects have surely grown more in size and complexity. I started from small residential rooms and now I am able to do full commercial projects. That has improved my confidence as a Sketchup user and as a person.

Working with Sketchup is an ever growing skill that always needs improving on every step. It is always a good idea to revise and review your skills, find the most optimum ways to work on your Sketchup models that work best for you and your pace of learning

To help you achieve the best results possible, what’s your typical workflow look like now you’re a seasoned SketchUp user?

I think it is just knowing what you need to do before you even start doing. When I receive my projects I instantly know what extensions and what techniques I will be using in order to create my model with desired results. Over time I definitely improved both in speed and quality. Although I recently upgraded my PC so naturally that helped me to achieve my best results faster! 

What extensions do you use and why? The ‘Render only’ feature of Skatter for example, is really helpful in managing file size and enabling users to render masses of objects. Tell us about the tools you use and what you’re interested in trying in the future.

I do use quite a few extensions. The extensions I use most frequently are V-Ray, Round Corner, Skatter, Curviloft, Artisan, ThruPaint. They help me to achieve my finest results when working on Sketchup models. The ‘Render Only’ option in Skatter is wonderful! I am able to work fast without overcrowding my model. Skatter is especially helpful for creating exterior renders, conservatories and any house projects with large glass doors. It improved my renders a lot!

Looking ahead I am very interested in trying Laubwerk. I read some amazing reviews and I believe it would be a brilliant addition to my plugin library. I am also exploring the possibility of getting Profile Builder from Mind Sight Studios.

3D visualisation is a competitive space and you clearly enjoy the creative challenges in what you do…. The ability to produce presentation ready graphics in SketchUp and iterating in 3D must be important in pitching and winning new business?

It is very important because without iterating in 3D there hardly be any work for visualisers. Today everybody wants to see photorealistic 3D images. On the other hand 3D Visualisation can help designers in so many ways for example show their clients the finished design before the work has even begun, spot any mistakes at a very early stage, experiment with different colours and materials and many more.

The main challenge is to get into my clients head and understand exactly how he wants to see the project and transfer his ideas into a photorealistic 3D image. Always be helpful in any way I can and good communication is a key in achieving desired results. When I succeed then both me and my client are satisfied and that is what I am aiming for. This helps me to win more business and make them stay with me.

Architectural, Commercial, Residential, 360 – what intrigues you most about visualising a scene? Is it lighting, structure, exteriors, nature v man-made? How does SketchUp and your favoured plugins ensure these successful outcomes?

I do try to give my attention to every possible detail when creating the scene. But I would have to say the little things is what intrigues me the most. A simple change of wall paint colour, different furniture material or as simple as changing metal colour from gold to chrome can have such a big impact on how different the design will look.

I love how quickly I can change materials using V-ray and the wonderful feature ‘Interactive Render’ gives me results in seconds. But let’s not forget about the small décor pieces. They just make the scene come to life!

Finally, in SketchUp Stories you mentioned a quote, ‘It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion come together”. Fast forward to today, you’re clearly relishing what you do.

Yes thank you I would like to think so. I love my entrepreneurship-life and everything that comes with it. Being self-employed and my own boss has its rewards. However, having to run a business alone can get overwhelming and lonely at times but I am very happy that I met so many wonderful designers and people that I get to work with and having to do that from the comfort of my own home that is just a cherry on top. I love everything that I achieved already and I know that I still have a long way to go and I am very excited about the journey ahead.

What advice would you give someone embarking on studies with a view to entering this industry? 

It is a very competitive market out there but living in a digital age there are so many helpful information and resources that can be found online. Many groups with great people that are ready to help you at any step of the way and courses that can be taken to enhance your skills. And today with so many opportunities to do things remotely you can start embarking this industry in an instant. You only need to have the drive and passion to start and good things will follow.  

Is it important to you to have a good relationship with your reseller? Cadsoft Solutions Limited is here not just to sell software, but to support end users and ensure they get the best out of their investment.

Cadsoft Solutions Limited are always very helpful, understanding and very supportive. Having a good working relationship with a reseller is very important and can make your life so much easier. I value everything that Cadsoft Solutions brings and enjoy working with them.

If you’d like to learn more about Gintare’s impressive work, you can follow her on Instagram or visit her website: www.gsinteriors.co.uk

From colleges to non-profits, architecture practices to architectural visualisation companies, we’re always keen on hearing how our customers use SketchUp (or Rhino, Enscape, V-Ray or Podium you name it!). If you’re a Cadsoft Solutions customer and would like to be featured as a customer case study, drop John Quinn in our marketing team a line and we can go from there. We’re particularly keen to hear from our SU Podium/Walker and SketchUp customers.

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Showcase interior design projects with SketchUp

SketchUp Pro Subscription

In part 1 of this series, we revealed how to create winning interior design options in SketchUp. Now that you’re finished modelling, what’s next? 
We show you how to present your vision to customers and blow them away with your designs. And don’t forget to sign up to watch a live demo of this workflow in our upcoming webinar.

A SketchUp Pro subscription includes a powerful ecosystem of products to help you communicate your creations. Let’s explore!

Add custom Styles to your design

Adding your personal style is an important part of showcasing designs. StyleBuilder allows you to create customised line styles using imported digital or hand drawn strokes. Think crisp pen lines, wavy pencil marks or marks from a fat stick of graphite. Combine line styles with unique textures, colours and watermarks to inject your creative flair into models, renders and animations. 

In SketchUp, you can create and edit styles. Apply your preferred style settings with a single click.

Create stunning 2D drawings and branded presentation documents

Now that you’ve added a style, it’s time to insert the model into LayOut. When you import a 3D model, a viewport is placed on the page. Good news, the scenes you set up in your SketchUp file are ready to use in LayOut. 

Combine model views with text and 2D vector illustration to present design details, materials and design options. Many of the tools in LayOut work as they do in SketchUp. That means you can quickly get to drawing, resizing, adding details, making copies and changing styles and scale. 

Present your project in LayOut

Present your ideas with SketchUp Viewer 

Are printed drawings or a pdf the only way to showcase your work? Of course not! SketchUp Viewer for Mobile gives you the power to view and share your portfolio on iOS and Android devices. Take advantage of Augmented Reality to evaluate design options in real-world scale. Switch between scenes to showcase designs on the go while retaining your model’s style.

Model on the go with SketchUp for Web

Not all CAD tools are fully editable on the web, SketchUp is! Handy if you need to make on-the-fly changes when you’re away from your desktop computer. Let’s say you’re in a meeting at a client’s office and they want to see a project with a revised furniture layout. Open a model to SketchUp for Web directly from Trimble Connect on any web device to make the changes in real-time. Save the file to Trimble Connect for easy access back at the office. 

Create rendered images with Trimble Connect visualiser

We’ll wrap this up with something that we are very excited about. Rendering! With a SketchUp Pro Subscription, you can create simplified renders using Trimble Connect for Desktop and the brand new Trimble Connect Visualiser. Note: this feature is currently available for Windows only. 

Step into AR/VR to experience designs before they’re built

Do you have access to a VR or Mixed Reality device? If your answer is yes, you can bring 3D models to life in mixed or virtual reality. Step into a powerful new way to explore, understand, and share your work. The best part? It’s part of a SketchUp Pro Subscription.

Are you using a SketchUp Pro Perpetual license that has expired or is soon to expire? Want to get on to subscription and take advantage of all the new additional features the new plan offers? Email us info@cadsoftsolutions.co.uk and we can advise you.

Remember to sign up to watch a step-by-step demo of this workflow in our upcoming webinar on December 11th, 4pm UTC.

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How to win interior design projects with SketchUp

SketchUp Pro Subscription Workflow

Pitching for a new project is one of the most exciting parts of the design process. Creativity needs to flow but deadlines are around the corner. You want to get ideas out of your head quickly and turn them into winning results that will wow your client, boss or team. 

Leverage the full power of a SketchUp Pro subscription at every stage of your creative process to deliver impactful concepts, quickly. Watch us do it live by signing up for our upcoming webinar (and keep reading for a sneak peak!) 

In Part 1 of this series, we’ll teach you how to start from scratch and create design options with ease. In Part 2, you’ll learn how to showcase those designs in their best light, leaving your audience mesmerised. The examples used are interior design focused but don’t worry, these concepts can be applied to almost any industry!

Get started with a 2D sketch, floorplan or photo in SketchUp Pro

There are a few different ways to bring your project into SketchUp right from the start. Don’t be afraid to use what you have depending on the project, whether a sketch, photograph (check out how to use Match Photo) or a 2D plan:

  1. Working from a hand-drawn sketch? Import the hand drawing as an image and start tracing with the Line tool to create a floorplan. This is an easy (and thus popular) way to bring a floorplan into SketchUp.
  1. Have a set of plans? Import a floor plan in CAD, image or PDF. Draw the outline of your project by scaling and drawing from the plan as a reference.

Bring the outline into 3D 

Once you have an outline, you’re ready to draw exterior walls. This workflow highlights how to use imported CAD geometry as your starting point

Create multiple design options using 3D Warehouse

It’s time to bring your space to life. Apply colors and textures with materials to add detail and realism to your models. Visualize your design ideas fast by importing real products from 3D Warehouse

SketchUp lets you quickly work through configurations and build upon the ones you like. Show off options for furnishings or add in various types of greenery to brighten the space and give your design some personality.

The key to showcasing and organising design options for your projects in SketchUp is use of Layers and Scenes. Layers help you organise your model, and Scenes help you present designs easily by adjusting layers, objects, styles and more! 

Save your project to Trimble Connect 

Now that you have your design options in hand, it’s time to save your project to the cloud. Trimble Connect offers you unlimited cloud storage with full version control. The best part? It’s included in a SketchUp Pro subscription

Trimble Connect

Part of a design team? 

Working together just got a little easier with Trimble Connect. Let’s say you’re working on the interior design at the same time another team member is working on the MEP design. 

You can import a reference model into SketchUp from Trimble Connect. You won’t be able to modify the model, but you can use it as context to more easily coordinate the project. This is useful when you have a team of designers working on different areas. 

Invite other people to your project, create groups with different permissions to control which files members can access. You can also utilize version control to track project history and progress.

Flying solo? 

Each time you upload a copy of your design file, Trimble Connect will keep track of the versions. Use version control to manage different iterations of your model and share those as design options with your client. Assign to-dos and quickly work through client feedback, all within Trimble Connect.

Sign up to watch a step-by-step demo of this workflow in our upcoming webinar on December 11th, 4pm UTC.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article to learn best practices for showcasing your design.