SketchUp Photo Match

Photomodelling has long been a specialised subject in the 3D world. Dominated by the likes of ImageModeller by Realviz and Photomodeler by Eos Systems the emphasis has always been on camera lens calibration and point matching, making it a time consuming process.

Google in their release of SketchUp Pro 6 have now made photomodelling available to the general user in the form of their new ‘Photo Match’ feature. We have had chance to try it out and it significantly speeds up the modelling process for urban visualisation.

The ability to quickly and easily set up the modelling viewpoints perspective to match a photograph allows one to simply trace a buildings outline and thus create its geometry. Once the outline is created you can then apply the image to the mesh providing instant phototexturing.

While its obviously not as accurate as the photogrammetric solutions it is significantly faster and easier to work with.

Take a look at the example movies to get a closer look at the Photo Match feature.

Author Bio

Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.

5 Comments

  1. Greg - January 11, 2007

    Interesting videos. The calibration step is almost the same as the calibration technique that Realviz VTour uses.

    Sketchups modeling tools look very good and fast. VTour has the advantage of being able to use panoramas as source images, can sketchup do this?

  2. Andy - January 11, 2007

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  3. Andy - January 11, 2007

    It is very much like VTour, so close in fact that we ran them side by side to compare in terms of modelling and calibration.

    Calibration is roughly the same but SketchUp is ahead in terms of ease of modelling. Sadly it doesent work with panoramas.

  4. Anonymous - March 18, 2007

    you have to know that not only pro version but also free sketchup allows photomatching

  5. drew51 - August 16, 2007

    VTour is a very awkward and difficult program to model in. If Sketchup could photomatch a Pano… I would be very happy.

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