Old School 3d Models


These days of being cooped up in the house give us all incentive to find interesting ways to keep ourselves entertained. I enjoyed making models in architecture school, and thought it would be even more fun without a looming deadline or a critique in the future. These days I'm often building 3d models in digital space, so it was interesting to get back to one of the original ways of visualizing spaces. Side note: The art of investigating crime scenes with physical models goes back a long time.

Designing the house while making something that I could touch, with a few primitive tools, an Xacto knife and some glue, made the process of seeing the space seamless. There was no need to worry about shortcuts, plugins, or file management. It was nice to relax and focus on the end product. When I was building the physical model I was much more aware of how the building would be put together construction wise and how the different spaces were laid out in relationship to each other.


With the physical model complete, I was curious what more I might be able to learn by rebuilding the house in digital space, so I fired up SketchUp and started modeling. One thing I noticed right away was the ease of adding details to test different materials and furniture placement. I also found the digital model made it easier to understand what was happening at different scales on the inside. I even tried walking through the house in The Wild... that's something I was never able to do in architecture school!

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Exterior view of the digital model

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Interior view of digital model in SketchUp


Screen capture of virtual reality session in The Wild

Jazzy Winston was a Visual Designer at Fat Pencil Studio from 2019-2021.