Dutch geo-modelers gather to model The Hague

Delft, The Netherlands was the most recent location for a Your World in 3D workshop. The goal of the event was to gather members of the local community to learn Building Maker so that they could model The Hague. Design8, an established Google SketchUp distributor in The Netherlands, organized, promoted and led a very successful event. Over 60 people attended the workshop, which was held at the ultra-modern technical facilities of TU Delft, a prominent Dutch engineering school.

The Dutch version of YMCA?

The day was kicked-off with a presentation from Professor Alexander Verbraeck of TU Delft, where he shared numerous examples of how 3D digital models were being used today. “It’s no longer a fringe area of study” he said, “3D is very much here to stay.”

Participants listen to opening remarks.

I followed with a brief summary of why Google was supporting these workshops and why it was important for local residents to develop and maintain 3D models of their cities. To paraphrase: “The built-world is undergoing change every day. Local residents are in a far better position to maintain an accurate view of their town than Google.”

Workshop attendees ranged in both age and experience. We had everyone from teenagers who have grown up with computers in their lives, to retirees who are eager to learn a new skill. Building Maker is a tool that suits all ages and skill levels. The Hague was added to Building Maker in December with a few other cities. Geo-modeling has been popular in The Netherlands since the concept was first introduced in 2006, so the strong interest the workshop received wasn’t unexpected.

Orlando from Design8 assisting a workshop participant

After a short introductory demonstration by Orlando Sardaro of Design8, attendees began modeling. Prizes were offered for the best model and for the most models created. Had we offered a prize for “most distance traveled”, Supermodeler MILO Minderbinder would have walked away with two awards. The young man, (who is not yet old enough to drive) endured a three-hour train ride (each way!) to attend the workshop. Not unexpectedly, MILO put his modeling talents to work and created this terrific model in SketchUp in the short time he was there. The prize for his work is a 3D print of the model, provided by i.materialise.

Nicole and I would like to thank Design8, TU Delft, and all the attendees for a terrific day!

Summer Sketch Workshop in Toruń, Poland

This past summer, Supermodeler Arkadiusz Pawlowski (a.k.a. Arek, a.k.a. aroo) decided to hold a SketchUp workshop for students at the Nicolas Copernicus University of Toruń. He partnered with fellow Toruń alumni Radoslaw Golba to teach the course. I asked him a few questions about the experience:

Arek alongside the workshop participants

Why did you decide to hold a workshop?

It was like an impulse I had on my way back from the 2010 Google Mapper and Modeler Summit held in Zurich. I came to the conclusion that it would be a good thing to organize classes for students to teach them what I knew about geo-modeling with SketchUp.

So the purpose of the workshop was to teach students how to geo-model?

Yes, but I also wanted to increase the students’ knowledge of modeling tools and have them practice visualizing objects in a digital 3D form. I encouraged them to work independently and to further develop the skills that they could use beyond geo-modeling.

Workshop in session

What was the schedule like for the workshop?

Since most of the students had never used SketchUp before, the first day of the workshop was used to let them familiarize themselves with the program. On the second day, students went out to collect photographs of selected buildings, and then later edited the images to make textures for the model. The third day of the workshop was for actually modeling the buildings in SketchUp and then texturing them with the previous day’s photos. All of the complete models are in a collection on the 3D Warehouse.

The workshop was also supported by the Department of Cartography, Remote Sensing and Geographical Information Systems of University of Toruń, who handed out certificates to participants at the end of the workshop… and Google provided t-shirts. 🙂

Workshop participants sporting awesome Google shirts

See more photos of Arek’s workshop, and download the placemarks of all the buildings created in the workshop, then view the models in Google Earth.