Retail outlet animation

  • Macker

    Changed the title of the thread from “Retail outlet” to “Retail outlet animation”.
  • Nice! The way you’ve implied motion in the people is a very clever solution.

    Out of curiosity, how many people have worked on the model? Is it just yourself or were others involved. I ask because I’m ‘the 3D guy” and do everything and if you’re the same then that’s one hell of a big project (modelling, rendering, video)

  • Nice! The way you’ve implied motion in the people is a very clever solution.

    Out of curiosity, how many people have worked on the model? Is it just yourself or were others involved. I ask because I’m ‘the 3D guy” and do everything and if you’re the same then that’s one hell of a big project (modelling, rendering, video)

    Hi Paul,

    It was myself and my junior colleague (who also animated the map/diagram), and it was quite the challenge due to the design of things being ongoing as we were modelling it, plus as you said the scale of it.

    Most of the site/buildings had been modelled in Revit, which we then exported into sketchup. As you can imagine, navigating a site of this size with all the buildings slowed Sketchup and Enscape to a snails pace, so our solution was to storyboard (PDF attached - also shows some shots that weren't used) the proposed camera shots to get client approval. Once that had been done, we could create a Sketchup model for each shot, deleting out all of the surplus geometry that was out of shot/not required. This had the additional benefit of allowing us to spread our workload between us quite easily as we would just each pick a shot and work on it.


    One of the issues we faced when bringing stuff through from Revit is that all of the textures read as being 2.54mm (even though they don't display as that) - so a lot had to be re-textured, which was a real pain. Also due to Revit not having any proper UV mapping facilities, a lot of the brick arches needed re-doing properly in 3DS max and then exporting back into Sketchup.

    The next challenge was getting assets of a high enough quality for vignettes, etc. We have a quite extensive 3s max library, but sadly our sketchup library lacked the quality that was needed. We ended up exporting lots of our shop interiors/windows and plants into Sketchup and going through the laborious task of re-assigning all the various bump and opacity maps.

    Our client then requested that we have animated people (shock horror we had initially quoted for that, which would have meant rendering out of 3DS max/VRay which is considerably more expensive and thus they said they were happy to go with Enscape). So the challenge was how do we get animated people into this?! We had many conversations and meetings about it, eventually arriving at the solution that we would treat each shot as if it were a time lapse, fading different people in and out in post. This meant every camera path had to be rendered up to 4 times, each with a different set of people! Thankfully due to Enscape being so fast at rendering, this wasn't a major headache.

    We did trial some other ideas too such as rendering just the people from 3DS max and matching the camera, which had some interesting results - but ultimately wasn't the look our client wanted to go for.

    For me personally it was a really fantastic opportunity to showcase what we could offer in terms of visualisation; I'm sure I'm not the only one who is bored of the traditional loooooong camera path that takes you round the entire development! We really tried to squeeze in as many little cut-away/B-Roll/Vignettes/Whatever you want to call them as possible, because there were so many nice details within the development that we could focus on. This, plus the faked movement of people is what kept the pace of it a bit more interesting than the standard camera path, I think.

    [edit] The still images of the development that it cuts to in places were 3DS Max/VRay.

  • “Our client then requested that we have animated people“

    Ha! Who would have thought that?


    Enscape’s speed constantly blows my mind, I had to make some minor edits (client request) to one of my houses recently, I made the edits, knocked out 7 panos and 8 video clips, re-compiled the video and pano tour .... all before lunch ..... damn magic in my eyes.

    My biggest bottleneck is SU’s sluggishness with big models; especially with copy/paste operations.


    There’s a thread of the forum requesting Enscape stories, you should post the above (or a version of) there, it’s a good one.

    Share your Success Stories with us!

  • Very well done - and elegant way to suggest lively movement.

    Out of curiosity - why do you need to export the Revit model into Sketchup as Enscape is available in Revit as well?

    Good question.

    The primary reason is simply that our 3D team don't use Revit. We could of course use Enscape within revit (and have done many times), but making changes to the model becomes an issue when it's the working model (imagine us ruining a Revit model of this scale!) and also when we need to tweak things for visual purposes (UV mapping for example) it becomes extremely unwieldy. Also, despite trying many, many methods with our in house Revit guru, we've yet to find a decent way to bring high quality assets in from 3DS max with their textures all still intact.

    Revit simply isn't built for visualisation as its primary function, and it never will be. If you want to venture outside of the Enscape asset library in Revit and model some custom bits of furniture, etc you're going to have a fairly hard time in comparison to Sketchup.

  • Really nicely done! I'm part of a viz team in a large architectural firm, and we have started to pick up a lot of Enscape work in a similar fashion to this. It's interesting to see how two firms a world apart can end up with very similar workflows!

    With regard to your issue with SketchUp slowing down; we have adopted a similar workflow to the typical Max + xref pipeline. We split our Revit models off into various worksets, import those into SketchUp to particular layers/tags, then xref these sub-files (per building babsis usually) into a master file. It means we can have multiple artists working on the various sub-files, while the head artist works within the master setting up cameras, getting the lighting right... all the good stuff. It relies on careful layer/tag management in the files, but we are pretty good with that now. The one issue we have had was Enscape's questionable proxy appearance, but we are going to trial using Transmutr to get around this... not a huge deal as we compose everything within Enscape anyway.

    Lastly - how are you importing your Revit files? We found the texture scaling issue was only present with FBX, whereas if we brought in DWG, while it didn't have material information, the mesh quality was much better and instancing was present. We used an FBX import to "grab" the materials and save them to our library, then apply them to our DWG import using Thomthom material replacer. Most Revit textures and UVs, as you pointed out, are hopeless anyway!

    Great work, has got me inspired for our next job with Enscape.