Category : creative community

11 Stress-Reducing SketchUp Plugins

We here at Fat Pencil Studio use SketchUp, like, A WHOLE LOT. Part of what makes it so great is the plugins, (or, as SketchUp calls them “extensions”): not only are there just tons of them, but there are always new ones to keep an eye out for. If there’s something you wish SketchUp could […]

Citizens and Artists
Posted by on February 27, 2018
Posted in: activism, creative community, inspiration

These days (but also always), it’s especially important to consider what it means to be a citizen (i.e., “member of society,” not “person of a certain legal status”). If we believe in this whole “American experiment” thing, then, as citizens, we have rights and responsibilities. These are intimately linked: without the concerted efforts of people […]

BBPDX's First Birthday
Posted by on February 14, 2018
Posted in: activism, creative community, events

Business for a Better Portland—BBPDX for short—is a community-building organization focused on mobilizing local business owners toward positive change. When it was founded about a year ago, Fat Pencil Studio was one of the first businesses to join. Recently, BBPDX celebrated its first birthday with a party for its members, cake and all. The last […]

Google Poly
Posted by on December 13, 2017
Posted in: AR/VR, creative community, Plugins, SketchUp, virtual reality

In a November 1st blog post, Google announced its launch of Poly, an online library of 3D objects where you can “browse, discover, and download.” At the end of the month, they also announced their Poly API (application programming interface) platform. So, who’re these new toys for? The API and library are primarily intended to […]

Quantify AR

Above: QuantifyAR: a full-fledged cost estimate for a construction project. Recently I had the chance to beta test QuantifyAR, an iOS app that uses augmented reality to take on-site measurements for construction projects. It then translates them into quantity take-offs and cost estimates. QuantifyAR promises to take what would undoubtedly be some hours’ worth of […]

Portland Streetcar How to Ride
Posted by on October 30, 2017
Posted in: creative community, projects, transportation

Last summer we had the pleasure of working with the fine folks at Portland Streetcar on a number of videos, one of which covers the specifics of “How to Ride” the streetcar. Production of this video was a blast (I hope you’ll see why), and we’re pleased to be able to share it with you […]

Put a Tree on it

Feature photo by Solterra Over the past two years, I’ve enjoyed watching the construction of Solterra’s new building on the corner of SE 9th & Division. As the project nears completion, some unique features are coming into focus. The south facade hosts a giant mural by UK Artist Finbarr Dac. He’s painted similar compositions all […]

Mapillary Action

Recently I heard about Mapillary, an open-source app that lets anyone with a camera and an internet connection contribute to a database of street view images from around the world. We use Google’s street view all the time to create 3D models of remote locations, so I was curious to see what Mapillary has to offer. […]

Design Thinking, in Theory
Posted by on June 12, 2017
Posted in: creative community, graphic design, inspiration

One of our biggest challenges at Fat Pencil Studio is simply explaining what we do. It’s not so hard to show off what we make: 3d models, diagrams, animations, maps, infographics, to name a few. However, these things are just the end result of a design process that we use to create visual stories. That […]

Laser Scans and Precision Modeling

As we mentioned in our previous post on Total Stations, electronic measuring devices are the standard when it comes to gathering precision data for 3D modeling. Laser scanners are becoming more powerful, less expensive, and thus more accessible for folks looking to create very precise 3D models. For what we do here at Fat Pencil Studio there […]