Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Back to School with Vectorworks

It is nearly Spring where I live, which means that it is Fall in the Northern Hemisphere, and time to get back to school. If you want to learn Vectorworks to use in school, you have several options. Nemetschek Vectorworks has a student portal . This allows you to get a free educational version of Vectorworks, and there are several free manuals to download, along with a video library.

There are you tube movies, just search Vectorworks in youtube and you will 100's of movies. 

The great way to learn Vectorworks is to use the self-paced Training from Vectorworks.  Here, you will find videos, free resources, and the training guides. The training guides are a great way to get started with Vectorworks, especially the Vectorworks Essentials Tutorial manual. This manual is designed to get you to use Vectorworks effectively from the beginning. 

If you teach Vectorworks, wouldn't it be nice to have access to Vectorworks training materials? Imaging going into a class and saying, "Please open your computers (tablet or smartphone) and download today's lesson, Quickstart to Vectorworks (or 3D modeling, or textures, etc)"

We have this ability right now, though kindle books and PDF manuals. Kindle books are great, because each student manages their own account.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Do you Need Sketchup if you Have Vectorworks?

I have been chatting with a couple of friends of mine about modeling in Vectorworks, and whether or not you need Sketchup along with Vectorworks. The argument in the past was that Vectorworks was alright for modeling simple buildings, but what about more complex shapes.

For a long time I have argued that Vectorworks is great for modeling complex shapes. I have used a bus stop project for a few years now to show that Vectorworks is perfect for urban design projects. But my friend Bill, still meets people that use Sketchup and they don't see the point of the bus stop.

I have been looking at my modeling manual, 3D Modeling in Vectorworks, 3rd Edition to make sure that this manual covers the topics you need. If you want to know more about Vectorworks in 3D, this is the manual you need. Not only does the manual have several exercises to teach you the most important techniques, but is also includes movies to show you how to work in 3D.

If you combine the Vectorworks 2011 techniques of working planes, planar graphics and the Push/Pull tool, I believe that you can create the models you want.

This model uses techniques that are in the 3D Modeling manual, and it only uses fairly simple techniques like working planes, planar graphics, Push/Pull tool and the Split tool.

When you render the model, it looks pretty reasonable, for a concept model. This model does not use any doors, windows, walls, or roofs. Everything here is built as raw 3D objects, just using simple techniques.

I have the building on a site, with a sun set for 12pm, 22 March, for my latitude and longitude. You can see the neighbouring house casts a small shadow that will affect the bedrooms on the left, but the patio is enjoying the sun.
Learn to use Vectorworks effectively, then you won't need Sketchup.

Should you use Vectorworks Fundamentals?

I usually use Vectorworks Architect, Landmark or designer when I'm working or writing my manuals. But for the past couple of weeks, I've been using the very basic Vectorworks Fundamentals ( the most basic version of Vectorworks you can get). I can't get over how many of the good things I'm used to using are not there. There are tools and techniques I use so much, I don't even think about them anymore.

For example, the Navigation Palette. I have gotten so use to this, it never occurred to me how much time is saves, until I had to make do without it.

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